The Wall - Dirges and Anthems. A scaffold tower stands out against a cloudy sky.

The Wall
Dirges and Anthems LP

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Originally released in 1982, sought-after vinyl Dirges and Anthems has received a remaster and landed on YouTube.

The album is an eclectic mix, inspired by the musical mélange spinning out of the punk movement. Amongst punk and new wave tracks, you’ll discover a ska detour, a Burundi-influenced beat and vocal track, and a Banshee-esque track. This is all a perfect tribute to punk’s ability to spin out new things.

You’ll find some versions of the 1982 recording online and it’s rather muddy. The 2024 remaster sharpens things up a great deal, separating the instruments so you can hear details that were hard to discern in the original.

While I know ‘Wunderkind’ is one of the big fan favourites, ‘Money Whores’ takes my top spot. There’s something about that opening riff and the punchy chorus vocal that draws me in. The fact it leads straight to ‘Barriers’ helps, another great song with an atmosphere of its own.

You sit in your room
Building barriers around you
Never trusting anyone one ever again
You’re on your own now

The new wave sound is fully embodied by ‘Walpurgis Night’, while the second half offers up the excellent ‘Chinese Whispers’ and ‘English History’.

The Wall are woven into the fabric of the experimentation and creativity of the era, changing and flowing away from a rigid structure or definition and preventing rock music from becoming a church. You’ll recognise flickers of their peers, whether that’s the Sex Pistols, Joy Division, Siouxie and the Banshees, Adam and the Ants or many others.

Listen to Dirges and Anthems

Listen to The Wall – Dirges and Anthems.

Dirges and Anthems Track List

  1. Who Are You
  2. Nice to See You
  3. Wunderkind
  4. Epitaph
  5. Money Whores
  6. Barriers
  7. Pete’s Song
  8. Tyburn
  9. Walpurgis Night
  10. Only Dreaming
  11. Footsteps
  12. Chinese Whispers
  13. Everybody’s Ugly
  14. English History
  15. Anthem

Written by Fenton on

Steve Fenton writes in our music, words, and culture categories. He was Editor in Chief for The Mag and covered live music for DV8 Magazine and Spill Magazine. He was often found in venues throughout the UK alongside ace-photographer, Mark Holloway. Steve is also a technical writer and programmer and writes gothic fiction. Steve studied Psychology at OSC, and Anarchy in the UK: A History of Punk from 1976-1978 at the University of Reading.

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