Visitors

Poet's End

Telephone Explosion

Released: 26th April 2019

LP£22.99 Buy Now In Stock. Dispatched today.


We totally missed the boat on this on its release in 2016 but we're here now! On the excellent Toronto label Telephone Explosion that was also home to the Chandra reissue.

"Holy shit! In the world of shit landfill reissue records, there occasionally comes a release that actually makes sense and deserves a spot on my record shelf. This band hailed from Scotland in the late ‘70s, released a couple of singles that vaporized, but somehow they piqued the interest of Mr. John Peel. Peel had them do three sessions, all of which were magical but, alas, they disappeared back to obscurity and the nine to five. Mercifully, someone pulled the sessions out of the ether and stuck them on the a 12”. One part Wire, one part Joy Division, and the rest a mix of the darker side of Crass records like Lack Of Knowledge. What makes this disc shine is the faultless BBC recording. I can’t believe this has been wallowing in obscurity for so long. Absolutely mandatory for all the folk who like a little sour taste to their post-punk."

–Tim Brooks (Telephone Explosion)

In their brief lifetime, Edinburgh’s VISITORS popped in and disappeared like a flash. Formed in the late 1970s by brothers John and Derek McVay, school friend Colin Craigie and rotating drummers Alan Laing and Keith Wilson, the group sparked a fuse with their rightfully titled debut single, 1979’s “Electric Heat.” This instant classic caught the ear of BBC’s godhead DJ John Peel, who financed their second single (1980’s “Empty Rooms”) and welcomed them for a series of Peel Sessions resulting in a third single (1981’s “Compatibility”).

VISITORS’ twitchy guitars, rattletrap electronics, discordant grooves, and droning vocals are perfectly emblematic of the era, but this was also a group with great songs. Though they dressed down in eerie minimalism, the quartet had a knack for melody and musicality. From the scorching “Electric Heat” to the static dance of “Our Glass”, PIL-style propulsion of “Compatibility” and Wire-y claustrophobia of “Pattern”, these could all be cult classics. Alongside themes of paranoia and unrequited love, the band’s signature moment might be the insistent seven-minute anthem “Poet’s End” or the creeping horror of “Visitors” (ending with a shouted warning of “footsteps coming towards your door!”).

Thankfully we now have Poet’s End, a VISITORS compilation which includes all previously released VISITORS singles and 4 previously unreleased tracks.