Ork Records: New York, New York
Through a little bit of luck, the memory—and the importance—of short-lived, New York-based punk label Ork Records has persisted. After gaining access to the storage space of Ork President Charles Ball, who died in 2012, Numero Group is shedding light on the piles of invoices, letters and contracts with Ork Records: New York, New York. Terry Ork founded the label in 1975, releasing an oddball assortment of weirdo rock and punk records, most notably from Richard Hell and Alex Chilton's early post-Big Star output. This 49-song collection also includes lesser-known artists like Erasers and Link Cromwell (Patti Smith guitarist Lenny Kaye). But the music tells only half the story. The vast paper trail in the accompanying 190-page book paints an intriguing narrative of a time and place that was short (Ork folded in 1980) and incredibly sweet. You see? Punk isn't dead. It's just collecting dust in an old storage unit somewhere.