What Mark Perry says: "It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that Punk turned my world upside down! In July 1976, after hearing and seeing the Ramones, I went from just another music fan, avid reader of the NME and Melody Maker, to become editor of punk’s premier fanzine, Sniffin’ Glue. It was almost an instant success and by December 1976, through our no nonsense approach, our position as the ‘punk Bible’ was assured. But it was never enough for me. As I saw the initial punk explosion subside into a succession of third-rate copycats, I wanted to have a go myself.
My first attempt at forming a band was in late ’76. We called ourselves the ‘New Beatles’ and it ended after a couple of rehearsals. It wasn’t until I met guitarist Alex Fergusson, a mate of Sounds writer Sandy Robertson, in early 1977, that I started putting together some more interesting ideas for a band. I worked on a bunch of lyrics and, pretty quickly, Alex had put tunes to them. Eventually calling ourselves Alternative TV, we had our first rehearsals at Throbbing Gristle’s Industrial Studios in March ’77. That initial line-up was just me singing and Alex on guitar, with Genesis P-Orridge helping out on some bass and drums. We did ask Gen to join fulltime, but he decided against it and stuck with Throbbing Gristle. After more rehearsals, we played our first gig at the Nottingham Punk Festival in May 1977, joined by Mick Smith on bass and John Towe (ex-Generation X) on drums.
I started thinking about doing a record almost from the start because, by this time, I was running the Step Forward record label with Miles Copeland, who was also to become the band’s manager. It seemed like a natural move to put out my own record, but it instead ended up on Deptford Fun City, another of Miles’ labels. Before that actually happened, we made a slight detour by recording a demo for EMI. They didn’t want to sign us, but we did end up with the tapes…"