Sound — 9
Just think, if The Ramones had released their first album just about seven months after they did then Australian band The Saints would've had the first punk album. Released in Feburary of 1977 (and recorded in late'76) (I'm) Stranded captures the urgency of punk while still maintaining some musical intelligence. The style of The Saints has differed in many years (as have the line-ups which mostly center around singer/guitarist Chris Bailey) but this first album is a fast, loud, abrasive album. The first album from the "classic line-up" (Bailey/vocals, Ed Kuepper/guitar, Kym Bradshaw/bass and Ivor Hay/drums) that would continue for two more albums showcases some of the best material to come from Australia. The production is harsh and quite distorted and could be the result of two songs "(I'm) Stranded" and "No Time" having to be taken off of a vinyl single (which predates anything made by the damned, the buzzcocks or the pistols) the band had released earlier in '76 instead of the master tapes (which they couldn't afford at the time) but this just adds to it's "punkish qualities"(come on when has punk album ever had a clean production).
Lyrics — 9
The lyrics are a lot of the time about boredom, disinterest in modern day life, long lost love affairs or people screwing with you. Also with some covers thrown in to the mix. Some songs like "Messin' With The Kid" talk about the trials and tribulations of growing up and growing old ("It aint to easy, being a young man"). The title track speaks about being "Stranded" in a boring modern day society. A lot of the lyrics are open up to your own judgement to what they are about and that's what makes a lot of the songs so great. Unlike other punk bands of the time who just shoved their meanings down your throat. The singer, Chris Bailey applys a kind of boredom and disinterest in his voice, he also has the power in his vioce to be loud and harsh or light and sombre when the song calls for it.
Overall Impression — 9
This album is still seen as a stepping stone in the evolution of Australian music and the punk scene of the late '70s as a whole. The reissue released in 2007 include 8 bonus tracks including covers of "River Deep, Mountain High" and "Lipstick on Your Collar" that completely blow the originals away. Probably and arguably the most impressive songs on the album are the title track and "Messin' With The Kid" because the sound of both those tracks is at the oposite end of the spectrum, where one is loud and fast the other is slower and more meaningful while both still manage to keep the power and distortion in their sound. And that just proves what incredible musicians Kuepper, Bradshaw and Hay were and how tight they all were as a band. Any person who calls themselves a fan of 1970s punk music should seriously buy this album, and for anyone who just like rock music in general buy it too.