1970s Manchester Punk Bands: Slaughter & The Dogs.
Above Photo: The cover of Do It Dog Style, Slaughter & The Dogs’ 1978 album.
One of my favourite Punk bands of the late 1970s was Slaughter & The Dogs, and as such they get a number of honorable mentions in my Punk and New Wave memoir, Bombed Out!. They also have special significance, as their album motivated me to learn how to play the bass.
They were one of the first Punk bands to form in the UK, way back in 1975 when they got together in Wythenshawe, Manchester. They were also one of the first UK punk bands to sign with a major record label.
What I didn’t know back then was the band’s name was dreamt up by singer Wayne Barrett in 1975 by combining the names of David Bowie’s Diamond Dogs album and Mick Ronson’s Slaughter on 10th Avenue album, which were then two of his favourite albums.
Slaughter and the Dogs famously supported the Sex Pistols at Manchester Lesser Free Trade Hall on 20 July 1976. This gig is credited with catalyzing the Manchester Punk scene, but their album Do It Dog Style also galvanized me as a sixteen year old Punk in Liverpool, when it came out in May 1978.
I mention in Bombed Out! that I won the album by submitting a Punk Playlist one Friday night to a BBC Radio Merseyside music programme hosted by Phil Ross, and I was knocked out by it. The bass playing was superb, and it prompted me to go and buy a second-hand bass guitar, learn to play it and to set up a Punk Band of my own, so I have a lot to thank them for.
I also used a track off the album (Keep On Trying) as a chapter heading in Bombed Out!, ironically dealing with my efforts to get a pittance from record sales from the band I was then in (1980s Liverpool band, Pink Military Stand Alone), when I was so broke I couldn’t even afford to be in the band any more.
Tough times certainly, but fantastic memories too.
I got to see Slaughter & The Dogs play twice at Eric’s Club, Liverpool, including the below gig, on 13th October 1979, and they were fantastic.
These are three of my favourite tracks off Do It Dog Style.
Where Have All The Boot Boys Gone (I’ll never forget the electrifying impact this had on me the very first time I played it, when I heard the powerful bass line at the start of the song).
We Don’t Care
Since You Went Away (I love the instrumental in this, when the song breaks down around 2 minutes in).