The Nothings  The Recorded Legacy

A lot To Learn  (Augustus Records) 1983

A Lot To Learn / Horrible Suspicion / Do You Remember / Reality / World War 3

This 5 track 12”, Steve Jones produced record, was released in ‘83 on The Nothings own Augustus label.

It proved to be one of the best documents of Steve’s work during his “lost period” in L.A.
It’s easy to see why Steve agreed to work with The Nothings. They sound like The Professionals Mk 2! Powerful melodious punk, with catchy tunes by the bucket load.

Guitarist/vocalist  Phil Holmes plays with a solid energy, while Lenny Keringer’s driving bass and Bob Deagle’s rhythmic drumming ensure a full, layered sound.

“A Lot To Learn” (with Steve on backing vocals) delivers full on, “Horrible Suspicion” snarls & bites, “Do You Remember” tames the energy before shouting at you, “Reality” hits you Professionals style, and “World War 3” makes you participate in the action, like it or not. The vocals are handled well with a cutting/biting delivery.

Above: Phil & Steve, Feb. '83

Unreleased Demos

Government / Never Change / Horrible Suspicion / Here We Go Again / Do You Remember / What Went Wrong / She’s In Another World

Never mind the released output! The energy & excitement blows you away! Steve leaves the beast untamed, pure 4 track magic.

The 2 cuts featured on the record “A Lot To Learn”, “Horrible Suspicion” & “Do You Remember”, lose nothing in this cruder form. Always a sense that things will get out of control, yet never quite losing the plot. Power punk from the “Silly Thing” mould, just hear The Nothings version of "Here We Go Again". That guitar! I can confirm that Steve didn’t do the solo. You’d never believe it.

The angry youth stance of “Government” may appear dated to some. I wouldn’t agree, if it was worth saying in ’83 it’s certainly worth listening to in ‘99. “Never Change” is a gem. Good meaty performance.

“What Went Wrong” starts with some in-your-face singing/ranting before accelerating into possibly the finest Nothings song captured on tape. Blistering performance.

The final demo is in fact an unreleased Chequered Past demo (see The Nothings/Jones story). Phil & Bob provide the rhythm while Steve provides spine tingling guitar, in classic “I Didn’t See It Coming” fashion. With Michael Des Barres on vocals, this cut surpasses anything on “Chequered Past”. It’s a stunning, moving, performance.

Review by Phil Singleton

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