'Cocks, Rock

Buzzcocks still kick ace, in case you've forgotten

"People always have this idea that he's very serious, very studied and intellectual," Shelley says. "Which, I suppose, he can be. But, really, he's got a great sense of humor. We just laughed through the sessions. It's a wonder we managed to get anything done."

The same could be said for the Buzzcocks sessions. Or lack thereof. Diggle was sidelined for a year after he took a spill on a rented scooter while on vacation in Greece with his girlfriend, requiring a metal plate to fix his mangled wrist. The guitarist's injury was the latest hurdle thrown in the band's path since its rebirth almost 15 years ago, joining the ongoing label difficulties and general indifference that have slowed the group's progress.

"This year will be the 14th anniversary of the reunion," Shelley explains. "So it's taken us almost three times as long to do just as much [as we did before]." He laughs. "So it's a little more leisurely, but I'm not sure whether or not I'm quite happy with it being that leisurely."

Two of these guys helped change the face of music in the 1970s, and neither one is named Johnny Rotten or Joe Strummer.
Two of these guys helped change the face of music in the 1970s, and neither one is named Johnny Rotten or Joe Strummer.

He's got a point. Time isn't as free as it once was, as Shelley and Diggle get older, when every album could be the band's last. Which brings up a sad thought: If Buzzcocks is the group's last gasp, if they break up in a week or a month or even a year, will they be remembered?

Maybe there's still time to change that.

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