Spin - 7/96, p.96
"...at their best...these Irish teens are power-pop heartthrobs..."
Q - 12/99, p.90
Included in Q Magazine's "90 Best Albums Of The 1990s."
Q - 7/96, p.1124 Stars
- Excellent - "...Words informed by Star Wars, Jackie Chan and fancying girls, Wheeler's voice imbues a Ramonic sneer with playful elasticity....1977 is rich with cherishable brio and bluff romanticism..."
Alternative Press - 8/96, p.703 (out of 5)
- "Ah, so someone else has been at the Black Sabbath albums, and Ash's true intentions are finally laid bare....Ash remain all chirp and charm, but that guitar presages something more than a simple hankering for volume...."
Melody Maker - 12/21-28/96, pp.66-67Ranked #34
on Melody Maker's list of 1996's 'Albums Of The Year.'
Melody Maker - 5/4/96, p.54
"...'Honestly,' you sneer, before going all funny. 1977 never aspires to be anything beyond 'My Guy' indie, boys-next-door making music for girls-next-door. It's as exciting as school discos promised to be, but ultimately as fulfilling..."
Kerrang (Magazine) - p.51
"Ash's timely debut straddled the divide between indie, punk-pop and hard rock with ease."
Mojo (Publisher) - p.1184 stars out of 5
-- "[T]he bonus material commemorates Ash's early breadth, with a masterful cover of Abba's 'Does Your Mother Know?' offset by creditable faux-American post-hardcore in the shape of '5am Eternal.'"
NME (Magazine) - 12/21-28/96, pp.66-67Ranked #25
in NME's 1996 critic's poll.
NME (Magazine) - 5/4/96, p.547 (out of 10)
- "...a happy-go-speedy thruzz and thrumble....vaguely charming [with]...simple, honest, priceless standbys--top-hole tunes..."
Ash: Tim Wheeler (vocals, guitar); Mark Hamilton (bass); Rick McMurray (drums).
Additional personnel: Lisa Moorish (vocals).
Recorded at Rockfield, Wales.
Personnel: Tim Wheeler (vocals, guitar); Lisa Moorish (vocals); Rick "Rock" McMurray (drums).
Audio Mixers: Mark "Spike" Stent; Phil Thornalley.
Recording information: Rockfield, Wales.
Photographers: Rolant Dafis; Brian Cannon; Ash.
On its 1996 debut, the Irish trio Ash offers up an immediately engaging set of energetic punk-pop. Given Green Day's rise to fame in the preceding years, Ash often received comparisons to that American band, but the young group, led by charismatic frontman Tim Wheeler, was more directly influenced by common older sources (as the album title would imply) such as the Buzzcocks and the Ramones.
Largely due to the presence of producer Owen Morris (the Verve, Oasis), Ash also benefited from a Britpop connection, a trait magnified by its playful demeanor (see the fun, martial arts-themed "Kung Fu"), which echoed precursors such as Blur and Supergrass. While the hard-charging, highly melodic single "Girl from Mars" garnered attention on both sides of the pond, it would prove to be Ash's peak of popularity in the U.S., though the U.K. would go on to embrace the ensemble's later, more adventurous sound, which reached full fruition on FREE ALL ANGELS.