"Got me down on my knees"

Stranglehold Front cover (UK) GEM 5 Back

  • Above: Stranglehold UK release, 1979, front & back cover. 
    Click to enlarge.

Cat. No: GEMS 5 (PB9404)
Label: GEM Records
Recorded: 1979
Released: 8th June 1979

A-Side: Stranglehold (Harper) 2.26
Run-out groove: B SIDE RULES  GEMS-5-A-1

B-Side: World War (Harper, Garratt)
Rockers (Harper, Garratt) 3.19 (Combined time)
Run-out groove: A PORKY PRIME CUT GEMS-5-B-1
(Some black vinyl copies have a different message in the B-Side run-out groove:
BILBO  GEMS 5-B-2  'w')

Line Up

Vocals: Charlie Harper
Guitar: Nick Garratt
Bass: Paul Slack
Drums: Peter Davies


The Subs' first release for Gem, recorded at Kingsway Studio Holborn (owned by Ian Gillan of Deep Purple), and produced by John McCoy (bass player with Gillan and the father of future Subs drummer Matt McCoy). Pressed on red vinyl with push-out and solid centres, then on black vinyl with a push-out centre. The last of the black vinyl pressings came in a GEM company sleeve.

According to press advertisements, the single was "rush released" (see cutting below) on 8th June 1979, and pressed "in Blood Red Vinyl"!

The single entered the UK top 100 chart on 23rd of June 1979, staying there for 8 weeks, peaking at number 26 (Source: Guinness British Hit Singles 11th edition). This prompted their first Top Of The Pops appearance (sung live over pre-recorded music), complete with a slight lyric change from "only 13" to "only 18". Stranglehold then dropped out of the top thirty the following week, only to re-enter the week after, which generated another appearance on the show.

Stranglehold was held back until the band had a record deal, it was then re-recorded with both b-sides for Another Kind Of Blues


Click on images to enlarge
Stranglehold Demo A-Side
 Demonstration Sample A-Side      Stranglehold Demo B-Side Demonstration Sample B-Side
Red vinyl push-out centre A-side Red Vinyl Push-out centre A-Side  Red vinyl push-out centre b-side Red Vinyl Push-out centre B-Side
Red vinyl A-Side Red Vinyl Solid centre A-Side        Red Vinyl B-Side Red Vinyl Solid centre B-Side
Black Vinyl A-Side Black Vinyl A-Side                        Black Vinyl B-Side Black Vinyl B-Side



Click on images to enlarge



  • Above: Stranglehold lyrics, unknown source.


Stranglehold press ad

  • Above: Stranglehold press ad, NME, 1979.


Full page press ad

  • Above: Full page press ad, Sounds 18th June 1979 pg35.

News story


  • Below: Music press news item, unknown date or origin.

From the Peter DC collection


Press article

  • Above: Press article, Record Collector, May 2006 (Punk Special)

Single review


Stranglehold Promo Sticker


Price list


Alternative chart

  • Above: Alternative chart, NME 7th July 1979, heralding Stranglehold release.
    From the Pete Davies Archive


Alternative Chart


Alternative chart

  • Above: Stranglehold at number 17 in the Alternative Chart.
    Unknown origin, from the Pete Davies Archive

Sounds crossword




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