THE CLASH – ” Rat Patrol From Fort Bragg “

Posted: March 12, 2022 in MUSIC

Rat Patrol… was meant to be The Clash’s fifth studio album. Conceived by Mick Jones as a double album, the plan was to continue the theme of a global rock’n’roll jukebox the band had staked out with its predecessor, “Sandinista!.” But Jones’ 15-track, 65-minute mix was rejected by Joe Strummer; Glyn Johns was brought in to edit it down to a single album: “Combat Rock”. Johns’ edits are cleaner and shorter (“Sean Flynn” loses three minutes, and its tropical atmosphere), but on “Overpowered By Funk”, the Rat Patrol version is closer to the skittish playfulness (and indulgence) of Sandinista!. There’s a sense of intimacy, too, on Mick Jones’ “Death Is A Star”, which is absent from the released version. Combat Rock ditched five Rat Patrol cuts. Three remain unreleased. “Walk Evil Talk” is seven minutes of jazzy atmosphere. “Kill Time” is a Caribbean shuffle. Ironically, “The Beautiful People Are Ugly”, later reworked by Topper Headon as “Casablanca”, would sit happily next to Strummer’s solo work.

The Beautiful People Are Ugly Too from The Clash´s Rat Patrol From Fort Bragg. RPFFB (as I have decided it should be abbreviated as) was, or is, what was originally planned to be the album that evolved into Combat Rock, and features along the Combat Rock songs a number of unreleased ones, such as this one. The Beautiful People Are Ugly Too is also commmonly known as The Fullham Connection, and according The Clash Wiki and some people I´ve spoken too (on the internet) Mick Jones has confirmed that to be its correct name, but I´ve yet to see the proof and the Rat Patrol From Fort Bragg ‘release’ titles it…well, The Beautiful People Are Ugly Too. So that´s what I call it. Anyhow. This is a pretty damn beautiful song if you ask me, with some pretty damn beautiful lyrics too, though to be perfectly honest I can understand why it didn´t make it to the final Combat Rock release.

Sound quality: Good, occasional murkiness
See also: D.O.A. (Demos, Outtakes, Alternates)

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