Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.


"Read and Burn 01" (Pinkflag)

Emerging from London's fruitful punk scene in 1976, Wire released three diverse, seminal albums -- the brilliantly terse Pink Flag, the pop opus Chairs Missing, and the atmospherically prog 154 -- before disbanding in 1980. More influential than popular, Wire's early work was then covered, referenced, and distilled by legions of artists, from Big Black and R.E.M. to Elastica and Fischerspooner.

After a moderately successful regrouping from 1985 to 1992, Wire returned to perform a few shows in 2000 and is now back with "Read & Burn 01," the group's first genuinely new material in over a decade. This deliberately short EP -- six tracks in 17 minutes -- is the first in a series of releases via the band's own Pinkflag label. The brief, hard-charging cuts hark back to Wire's punkish material, percolating it through the outfit's later, more avant aesthetics and edgy production. Every song clocks in at fewer than three minutes and features smartly rigid pummeling rhythms, interlocking buzz-guitar riffs, shouted-sung lyrics, and repetitive, looping intensity. All told, "Read & Burn 01" manages to succeed both as a back-to-basics update of the glory days and as a stand-alone release among the current crop of '80s revivalists. Indeed, Wire helped invent that stuff, you know.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.

More by Mike Rowell

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 23, 2020

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


Staff Pick Events

  • Open Turntable Tuesday @ The Winchester

    • Tuesdays