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Played This Week

August 28, 2009

Three sides of Clash brilliance this week, in the ultimate “Bankrobber” single that never actually existed.

Opener: the original a-side. Complete excellence. The poetry, the sounds, the style, everything that made The Clash so great is here. A non-album cut that was released in 1980, “Bankrobber” was pretty much dismissed by their record company. Paul Simonon has said that they were told the song sounded like David Bowie backwards. It was fairly successful in the UK nonetheless, and it helped pave the way for the amazing Sandinista! record later the same year.

Next: “Robber Dub,” a version that appeared on the Black Market Clash compilations. On the first of those compilations, a shorter version of it was edited right onto the end of the original track, creating a nice after-dub. Let’s go with the full version though.

And to finish: “Rockers Galore…UK Tour,” the original b-side to the 1980 single. It’s a toasting version by Mikey Dread, who collaborated with the band on a number of tracks in 1980 and toured with them as well, which his rhymes on this track document. Still a rare cut, but worth the hunt if you liked Dread’s contributions on Sandinista! It is actually included in the Singles Box compilation, which compiles all the singles and b-sides in their original orders.

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