The Perry Boys are one of the great untold stories of modern youth culture. They emerged in the pivotal year of 1979 in inner-city Manchester and Salford, a mysterious tribe of football hooligans and club-goers united by a new fashion. Their only counterparts at the time were the Scallies of Liverpool, who became their biggest rivals both on and off the terraces.
As a young follower of Manchester United, Ian Hough witnessed first-hand how the Jurassic bootboys of the infamous Red Army were slowly usurped by a small but fast-growing group of unlikely-looking pretenders. They sported Fred Perry polo shirts (hence the Perry name), Lee cords, Adidas Stan Smith trainers and wedge haircuts. Their sound and style-track was Roxy Music and David Bowie and they established an appetite for amphetamine-fuelled excess that would eventually transform both cities into clubbing and style capitals of the world.
Hough was one of the originals and charts those heady years in vivid prose. He describes the fights, the fanaticism, the drugs, the trips abroad and the main faces who scoured Europe for the latest obscure designer gear.
As the scene developed and split, it spawned gangsters, grafters, drug dealers and the nascent rave scene. It also went mainstream, influencing high street fashion and spewing out a host of imitators.Perry Boysis a witty, nostalgic yet unsentimental look at a cultural explosion whose tremors are still being felt.