"It's Irrational" – Gl*xo Babies
"On the Continent" – Europeans
"Green Is in the Red" – Private Dicks
"Too Much Commotion" – Moskow
"Chronicle" – Essential Bop
"What You've Got" – Directors
"Own Up" – Various Artists
"Slugweird" – Sneak Preview
"Sound" – The Stingrays
"Anthem" – The X-Certs
"The Alternative" – Apartment
"Cross-Slide" – The Numbers
"Nothing" – Vice Squad
"Move Fast-Stay Ahead" – Stereo Models
"My Dead Mother" – Double Vision
"Poison" – Apartment (Bonus unreleased track)
"Desire" – Sneak Preview (Bonus unreleased track)
"Don't Follow My Lead" – Private Dicks (Bonus unreleased track)
"List '99'" – Double Vision (Bonus unreleased track)
"Down at the Park" – Vitus Dance (Bonus unreleased track)
"You Have Been Warned" – The X-Certs (Bonus unreleased track)
Avon Calling is an album of tracks featuring bands from Bristol, UK, on local record label Heartbeat Records, and was originally released in 1979. All but 2 of the tracks were recorded at Crescent Studios in Bath by David Lord and Glenn Tommey, when the bands were "neatly fitting in on "off days" from on-going sessions by the likes of Peter Gabriel, The Korgis & Kate Bush."
At the time of the LP release Rick Joseph of the NME started his review of the album, "Avon Calling is the collective endeavour of 15 bands that live and languish around Britain's Most Unsung Major Metropolis. So, leaving aside any thoughts of the value of compilation albums in general, and digressions on rock geography in particular, it only remains to be said that 'Avon Calling' is a veritable riot of stunning pop."
In 2005 the album was re-released as a Double CD, that included bonus unreleased tracks and selections from each of the first 12 Heartbeat singles from 1978 to 1981. It starts with an excerpt from John Peel's BBC Radio Show where he introduces the album as, “And we had numerous, well quite a few compilation LPs in recent, in the past year …but now, there's a new one called Avon Calling: The Bristol Compilation, and this is really the standard by which the others must be judged in future. Because it really is superb there are 15 tracks on the LP, genuinely not a bad one amongst them, and a lot of really good stuff. I’m going to start really, side 1, band 1, and will work my way through it over the next few programmes…”
Gerard Langley of The Blue Aeroplanes wrote in the sleeve notes for the reissue, "These CDs will give you actual punks (X-Certs), reclaimed pub rockers with skinny trousers and ties (Private Dicks), up-tempo attempted popmeisters (Various Artists), arty kids in a strop (Glaxo Babies), New York bohemian wannabes (Apartment), rock-poetic wannabes (Art Objects), teenage dubheads (Double Vision), closet Doors fans with a grudge (Essential Bop), and many more."
Also the Allmusic review by Stewart Mason notes, "What's most illuminating about Avon Calling … is that it puts the lie to the narrow definition of post-punk that has grown in the popular imagination since the turn of the millennium, when it seems that this era in British pop music consisted solely of bands that sounded sort of like either Joy Division or the Human League. As a matter of fact, there's little Manchester gloom or straight synth pop among these 46 songs." and, "Touches like a bit of John Peel introducing the Glaxo Babies' "It's Irrational" and an interesting, scene-setting radio interview by DJ Simon Edwards set the social context. This might seem like the sort of compilation that's mostly for boffins, but there is enough solid material on Avon Calling: The Bristol Compilation to make it worth recommending to even the casual fan of the style.”
At the time of the original release of this LP, the city of Bristol was in the short lived (1974–1996) English county of Avon, hence the play on the Avon Products advertising slogan.