"Published in 1978, In The Gutter is a real-time account of Punk as it happened. As a newspaper columnist, Val Hennessy presented a series of TV shows which were labelled as a “chaotic disaster”. Entitled “Punk and Acne Go Together”, his iconic programme encapsulated the anger and the pathos of punk. The book drew on that programme and Hennessy to describe the punk movement, often through the words of the “punk fans”.
What is so exceptional about In the Gutter by Val Hennessy is that it was written and published at the time of Punk’s giddy ascendency to the top in 1978. The contemporary nature of the book ensured that the contributors were the genuine Punks of the time – the originators and the creators rather than, as can be the case in later books, fringe participants who staked the claim to be at the very heart of the movement."