ALBUM REVIEW: The Men They Couldn’t Hang - Silver Town (reissue)

The Men They Couldn't Hang ... Silver Town (T-Bird reissue).
The Men They Couldn't Hang ... Silver Town (T-Bird reissue).

London folk-punk outfit The Men They Couldn’t Hang have enjoyed renewed attention since last year’s excellent new album The Defiant.

It received their best reviews in years, and they’ve also experienced a flurry of interest as a fine live attraction.

That’s as good an excuse as any to revisit some of the gems from their back catalogue, which is why T-Bird have reissued Silver Town, their fourth studio album.

Originally released in 1989 on the Silvertone label, it was, quite staggeringly, the only TMTCH album to make the Top 40, reaching No 39.

The good news is that it’s been remastered, so sounds great, and six bonus cuts have been added to the original 11 tracks, including demos, an extended mix of the single-that-never-was Rosettes, a couple of demos, and single A and B-sides.

Only one song sounds a little out of place - their cover of 10cc’s 1973 hit Rubber Bullets. It’s passable enough, but a bizarre choice to cover in the first place.

Often political, always tuneful, frequently ascerbic, their lyrics pulled no punches, and remain relevant on songs like Company Town, “the company owns every piece of ground, and everybody in the company town”.

That is one of this album’s standout tracks, along with the excellent single A Place In The Sun, and while it’s not their best album, it’s still a worthy addition to any collection. 8/10. GW