After listening to Cut from 1979 , it's no wonder the Slits first tour was with the Clash. However for these girls, dub-reggae was injected into them from the start. Along with co-conspirators The Raincoats, LiLLIPUT (who also got reissue treatment as of late), and Siouxie Sioux they expanded the framework for Riot Grrl and to-die-for indie sweethearts of today, but Cut proves to be a very important step forward for punk rock music.

M.I.A. isn't exactly ripping off Ari Up (lead vox), Palmolive (Teresa Pollitt [bass]), and Viv Albertine (guitar), but with a backing band instead of a backing track she might sound a little bit like them. Right from the onset, opener 'Instant Hit' begins with picky guitar and tip-toeing high hat, with all three girls swirling about. At:48, the album kicks off the dubbed-out sound with a cliche, taut-snared bdddDADA *crash!*. Copy and pasted from Alton Ellis and Desmond Dekker, from there, the rest is just relentless reggae. The Slits' particular brand of it is angular and broken up. The drums, here provided by the only male member Budgie (Peter Clarke) are colorful, but tie-dyed as he climbs over walls of change with relative ease on So Tough. Shoplifting anticipates a straight feel, and then chokes you for a second and leaves you to groove, but between the trios gang-vox chorus and Ari Up's screeching, the mere 1:40 of the song is a lower class living English viewfinder, which sums it up perfectly: "Do a runner!" so you can eat tonight. Cut is quite thin, and sounds as if it's RIGHT in front of your face, little sounds to create a big idea. Spend, Spend, Spend's just as Ari sings "I want to buy..." at the 1:20 mark, a coin drop cuts through everything sizing down their sound yes, but more so giving perspective.

The 2010 deluxe edition gives this morsel justice, by expanding it to a double disc with 29 other tracks including alternate takes, 8-track demos, and John Peel sessions. Highlights include the spacey 'brink style dub' version of Typical Girls, the straight post-punk of Vindictive, and several instrumental out takes on disc 2. Feminism? Would Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Lucretia Mott pose loinclothed and muddy? Welcome to a broader revolution.


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