Only a handful of bands can lay claim to being truly influential: the likes of Velvet Underground, Kraftwerk, Roxy Music, Joy Division, Wire, The Smiths andPixies have the kind of musical impact that rings through generations, the kind of influence that makes people want to start bands in the first place. Often overlooked from such lists of earth-shakers – perhaps because of their sadly limited recorded output – are Bristol’s The Pop Group (pictured). Initially active from 1977 to 1981, The Pop Group were a truly postmodern phenomena, from their own meta band name to their hotch-potch of musical influences, blending funk structures with Situationist content, politics with freeform jazz. From Sonic Youth and Faith No More to Manic Street Preachers and Optimo, the ripples of The Pop Group remain and the group themselves have overcome their differences to produce their third studio album in 26 years, Citizen Zombie, and to hit the road. To mark their ninth year of celebrating innovative musical weirdness, Manchester promoters Dots & Loops have snagged The Pop Group to play a special gig at Ruby Lounge. They are joined by three support acts – Gum Takes Tooth, Kogumaza and Dead Sea Apes – giving punters a chance to celebrate some great British originals and to hear the wonderfully strange musical legacy they’ve left in their wake. And because it’s a birthday there’s also an afterparty. Back at Dots and Loops’ usual haunt, Kraak, there will be eclectic playlists galore played late in to the night from the regular Dots residents, plus guest spots from the much-missed Underachievers Please Try Harder and from Greg Thorpe of Drunk At Vogue and Off The Hook. All will be airing out their weirdest and very best party starters. You might even get chance to say hello and thank you to The Pop Group in person.

The Pop Group: Sat 13 Jun, Ruby Lounge, 28–34 High Street, M4 1QB, 6pm, £18,

Dots & Loops 9th Birthday Afterparty: Sat 13 Jun, Kraak, 11 Stevenson Square, M1 1DB, 11pm, £4 OTD or FREE to those with tickets for The Pop Group show

Sat 13 Jun
Joshua Gordon
Published on:
Wed 10 Jun 2015