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Reviews of "Protect and Survive" by final program



1980 7" EP "Protect and Survive",

In November 2010 Final Program featured alongside Depeche Mode, Soft Cell and New Order as part of a noteworthy DJ mix and playlist “SSG Special: High-Rise Living 78-86 [Part 1] - compiled by "The Black Dog & Regis"  released on Wednesday, November 24, 2010 "The Black Dog" stated:

'Historically, music only really gets interesting when the British get involved and this was a very British musical revolution.'



Close to the Noise Floor

In 2016 Final Program (Protect and Survive) featured alongside Human League and OMD on "Close to the Noise Floor"  described as:

"....an immensely powerful compilation album which may ultimtely come to be seen as the ultimate definitive collection of nascent Electronica."




In May 2016 Record Collector magazine (Issue 453) as part of a review of “Close to the Noise Floor” by Oregano Rathbone pays particular homage to the original Final Program track "Protect and Survive" first released 35 years earlier:

"Whatever nexus of elements provided the impetus, it’s significant how almost homely so much of the chilly electronica produced in that era now seems. “Adorable” is emphatically not what any of them would have been going for; but listening to, for example, In The Room by Third Door From The Left, or the earnest and utterly wonderful Protect And Survive by Final Program – “WHAT’S ALL THIS I HEAR ABOUT NUCLEAR FALLOUT?” proclaims vocalist Richie Program, in a stentorian android monotone – the envisioned dystopia was clearly our dystopia, a comfortably familiar landscape bordered by Frisbee-trapping pylons, rough-cast Bauhaus concrete and the Poundsaver monophonic synths that acted as sonic emojis for The Tomorrow People.



Cherry Red records described the importance of the collection:

 "inspired by the DIY ethos of punk, a quiet revolution took place across the UK in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The rise of the microchip and the advent of affordable synthesisers enabled countless artists for whom guitars, drums and bass had become old hat, and in grubby bedsits, unremarkable living rooms and art school halls across the British Isles, UK electronica was born. The underground, fuelled by cassette exchanges, co-operative vinyl compilations and a thriving mail order network, quickly began to stretch the boundaries of sonic experimentation."



A review by Pitchfork further develops the theme:

The primitivist phase of the synthesizer came after the sophisticated start. In the late 1970s, cheaper machines like the Wasp became available; they were also compact, portable, and relatively user-friendly compared with their bulky predecessors. This democratization of electronics happened to coincide with rock’s own self-conscious return to juvenile basics in the form of punk. .....Close To the Noise Floor is a 4xCD survey of the excitingly messy birth of British electronica during the late '70s and early '80s. .....“Minimal synth” works as a shorthand tag for Close To the Noise Floor’s remit, although the scope of the trawl is actually wider and more disparate than what that term tends to signify, taking in electro-punk, industrial, synthpop, dark ambient, and more. Rather than use generic focus as an organizing principle, the anthology achieves coherence through sticking with a single country—Britain—when it could have easily have swept across the equally active European scene or harvested the scattered but significant American exponents like John Bender and Nervous Gender. The national focus makes sense historically, in so far as the UK scene was catalyzed by half-a-dozen native outfits who released debut singles within a few months of each other ... Close To the Noise Floor provides a fascinating overview of the formative years of British home-studio electronica: groups who were precursors in spirit, if not direct lineage, to the techno and IDM artists of the ’90s.



Metacritic gave the 4 cd boxed set a score of 89.







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Future Music on Happy Here by Helm of Awe







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Official Guide to Scottish Minimal/Synth 1979-1983

Also in 2014 Vinyl on Demand included an extensive selection of Final Program material in a massively definitive 8 record set : "Official Guide to Scottish Minimal/Synth 1979-1983" featuring Alistair Robertson and “100% Man Made Fibre”

Final Program contributed the material for the fourth 12” disc in the set: