1 2 X U (2006 Digital Remaster)
Label: Parlophone UK
Wire got it right several times during their evolutionary career but never as much as its first, Pink Flag. Like the Clash, Wire were true innovators and channeled punk's ethos beyond other progenitors' narrow vision. Here, their short, sharp sonic attacks are executed with pinpoint accuracy and rarely clock in more than three minutes. Singer Graham Lewis' warbling spitfire is strangled by tightly wound chords and spartan drumming. The kneecapping fury of "Ex Lion Tamer," "Mannequin" and "12 X U" informed future generations of bands, including Joy Division, REM and Elastica.