Released in the US in 1978, Blondie's Parallel Lines brought the band their first commercial success. By mixing punk, disco and radio-friendly rock with nostalgic influences from 1960s girl groups, pop and surf rock, the album was a departure from Blondie's earlier two albums. Parallel Lines embraced the diversity of New York City's varied music scenes, and embodied the social conflicts that played out between fans of disco, pop, punk and mainstream rock.
Kembrew McLeod's critical account of Parallel Lines and the story of Blondie's rise also serves as an alternative history of 1970s American popular music. It challenges the conventional wisdom that dismissed disco as fluffy (and implicitly feminine) prefab schlock, while at the same time elevating punk's pop influences.