The Stranglers formed as the Guildford Stranglers in the southern England village of Chiddingfold (near Guildford) in 1974, plowing a heavily Doors-influenced furrow through the local pub rock scene -- such as it was. Of the four founding members, only Hugh Cornwell had any kind of recognizable historical pedigree, having played alongside Richard Thompson in the schoolboy band Emil & the Detectives. According to Thompson, their repertoire stretched from "Smokestack Lightning" and the blues, through to "old Kiki Dee B-sides," while their gigging was largely confined to the Hornsey School of Art, where Thompson's sister was Social Secretary. -- Dave Thompson
TRACKS: Time to Die - Sugar Bullets - Heaven On Hell - Laughing At The Rain - This Town - Brainbox - Southern Mountains - Gain Entry To Your Soul - Grand Canyon - Wet Afternoon - Never See - Leave It To The Dogs - Coffee Shop - Vicious Circles - So Uncool.