“Slow down Cunthead!”

I get to hear this profanity being hollered by a rather worse for wear Blackpool local just after 10am on a glorious Saturday morning and actually take it that its aimed at me as I admit I feel like death warmed up after our Fan-dabi-Friday spent in the unprecedented heat of the Winter Gardens with The Stranglers in The Empress last night possibly setting the record for the hottest gig I’d ever been in. It’s not though, the comment, it’s actually aimed at a local taxi driver who dared to pass the unhappy chappy on a pedestrianised area, but still I find it a life lesson worth taking on board as with the prospect of another full day spent in the punk rock pleasuredome ahead the last thing I really want to do is crash and burn with so many great bands still to check out.

To counter this I feel a bit of retail therapy is in order to restore some balance as I plough through the local second hand record shops looking for that ever illusive vinyl copy of Alistair Terry’s ‘Yonge At Heart’, which of course I never manage to find, but instead I come away with 10 cock rock albums that would make any grown man blush if they were ever caught in the possession of them.  Let’s hope then that I don’t happen to bump into The Bar Stool Preachers on the way back to the hotel and become the brunt of some brutal ribbing for actually buying an album by a band called Dirty Blonde… oops!

With my sanity partially restored I head back into The Empress for my first band of the day at the still ungodly hour of 12:35 to catch the return of South Californian hardcore outfit Spider to Rebellion. Featuring former and current members of bands such as Channel 3, Walk Proud, Total Massacre and Bullet Treatment Spider provide a thunderous wake up call for those brave enough to leave their pits early doors.  There’s a cover of Black Flag’s ‘Depression’ slotted in somewhere within their energetic blur and it’s a song which also features on the band’s new ‘Energy Gone Wrong’ EP. ‘Barcode Baby’ and ‘Metal Detector’ help them deliver some killer blows too. You know I’d pay good money to see a double denim rocker actually turn up at a show played by this lot thinking it was the 80s UK boogie band who went by the same name and get the shock of their baldy longhaired lives, I really would.

Taking a trip up to the Rebellion Punk Art show is always on my list of “must-dos” if not just to see my old mate Colin Creamcrop Scott who as always is entertaining the masses with his tales of 80s Polish hardcore bands as well as wowing them with his use of reclaimed items to deliver his stunning visuals. There’s always something that catches my eye here not least this year the ever-growing mixture of media being used but I must admit what I do miss having witnessed some right corkers over the years are the old John Robb curated literary interviews that used to take place throughout the weekend in this very venue. Still this year there’s Micky Geggus and Jordan popping up for some Q&As and signing sessions so all is not yet lost.

Heading back to the Arena just in time to catch kung fu kicking Swedish garage punks Zero Zero this bunch of mentalists leaves a lasting impression me both on and off stage with their intoxicated antics. There’s no nudity to write about this time around but bassist Felix later revealing to me and Dom that The Sick Livers are one of his all-time favourite bands was indeed a weekend defining moment.

Quickly shuffling over to the Opera House ready to catch The DeRellas playing what has become their Rebellion second home (and duly rechristened The DeRellaDome by yours truly) the immediate thing that hits me – other than the rather welcoming air conditioning – is just how packed it is down the front ready for Joe, Timmy, Luca and Billy to make their appearance, and this alone really restores my faith in the UK music scene right now as it’s great to see the guy’s continuous hard work making such a noticeable impact.  Of course, delivering a set packed full of glam pop goodies like ‘Don’t Go’, ‘Rip It Up’ (where Luca channels his inner Spaceman) and the simply fantastic ‘High Rise Supersize’ is only going to help the fan devotion grow even further and a year on with Billy Chaos holding down the backbeat The DeRellas really are sounding like the band I think they’ve always dreamed of being. I once saw The Only Ones play the Opera House and they weren’t anywhere as good as The DeRellas were today. You better believe it brothers and sisters.

It’s at this point in our Rebellion Saturday that me and Dom normally find a local boozer and enjoy the first weekend of the football season unfold on a TV screen but this year Dom’s interviewing Mr Spunk Volcano for a soon to be published RPM exclusive interview so instead I tag along to listen to possibly one of the most in-depth discussions the masked man has ever given and trust me when I say this one is certainly going to make for some interesting reading.

Returning to the Winter Gardens with every intention of watching my old mate, ex- Glitterati and current Rich Ragany & The Digressions guitar dude Gaff, playing with Desperate Measures I arrive at the Arena for their allotted slot only to find the place in band changeover mode so I assume they are running a little late and get myself a drink. Then when Blitzkrieg finally do make it onto the Arena stage the penny drops and I realise I should have been in the Pavilion all along and even with a quick sprint to the correct venue I literally turn up just as the final chord is echoing out around the horseshoe. Bollocks! Sorry lads, that’s gotta be a first for me, but at least I’m man enough to admit it and hopefully raise a smile or two in the process.

Angry with myself at this band faux pas I make sure I’m in The Opera House well in advance of Alvin Gibbs and The Disobedient Servants taking to the stage and yes I do triple check my planner this time, because having see this band deliver one of my gigs of the year so far I was not about to miss out. Especially when today the core trio of Alvin, Leigh and Jamie that I saw just a few months back are being joined by the master of guitar crunch Steve Crittall and for just a couple of songs birthday boy Gizz Butt who looks positively delighted to get to shred his way through the solos on the raw power of ‘Clumsy Fingers’ and the Iggy tribute ‘Down On The Streets’ . The setlist is pretty much the same as the one I’d seen previously but with the added bite of Crittall on guitar, I can’t help but wish I’d seen this line up play these songs in a small club. Still here’s hoping for the future as with the band sounding this great the ‘Your Disobedient Servant’ album surely can’t be the end of the solo adventure for Alvin.

Moving back to the Empress Ballroom just as Italian boot boys Giuda are about to take the stage with an uproarious version of ‘Overdrive’ from their excellent if somewhat sonically different ‘E.V.A’ LP it’s the intensity of the slightly rejigged line up that immediately hits me. I admit I was half expecting them to have turned into Giuran Giuran (thanks to Jim Rowland at Uber Rock for that one) given the use of synths on the new record, but no, as they rattle through the likes of ‘Back Home’, ‘Number 10’ and ‘Get It Over’ they actually sound tougher than ever before, which with no between-song banter and this time around no cover versions makes for the almost complete version of Giuda yet. Leaving the stage with ‘Cosmic Love’ from ‘E.V.A’ blasting out of the PA was certainly a bit odd though.

At this point, I admit I could have just stayed in the Empress for the veritable smorgasbord of tasty Oi! bands that were about to follow but with the lure of Duncan Reid playing the Opera House and that venue’s rather splendid sound and air-con I decided to play it cool ahead of Cock Sparrer and catch the 1-2 of The Big Heads and then later Walter Lure before sweating out half my body weight back in the Empress.

Opting to catch Duncan Reid And The Big Heads proves very quickly to be an inspired choice of band as the quartet rattle through some of their very best songs including a poptastic ‘Baby Doll’, a huge sounding ‘Bombs Away’, along with the uplifting ‘Just Because You’re Paranoid’. It’s also guitarist/keyboardist Sophie K Powers’ birthday and that seems to add an extra bounce to the whole band tonight and as guitarist Nick Hughes takes to the microphone for a run through ‘Brickfield Nights’ and the whole band join in on ‘First Time’ (a song Duncan dedicates to the songwriting genius of Honest John Plain) the whole party atmosphere seems to engulf the front rows right through to the last chord.

Picking up a quick bag of chips to keep me going I’m soon back in the Opera House in time to catch the only remaining Heartbreaker Walter Lure and his all-star LAMF band that also features Mick Rossi on guitar, Mark Laff on drums and Nigel Mead on bass. Now the cynics out there might be thinking this has car crash written all over it, but I’d actually say after watching these guys live it felt a hell of a lot more like a real band than the last time Lure played Rebellion back in 2013 with a few (admittedly excellent) hired guns. In particular, Laff and Mead are a watertight rhythm section and Rossi has always been something of a Johnny Thunders disciple can barely hide his excitement tearing off the riffs to the likes of ‘Pirate Love’, ‘Chinese Rocks’ and ‘Born To Lose’. Lure again adds in a few Waldos numbers along the way plus this time there’s also a couple of Slaughter & The Dogs tunes sung by Rossi. What we have here ladies and gents is a highly entertaining set that once again treats the Heartbreakers legacy with the respect it deserves.

Saturday night at Rebellion 2019 is all about the return of the mighty Cock Sparrer to the Empress Ballroom, and trying to get a good vantage point from which to watch their set is proving an almost impossible task even a good 15 minutes out from the scheduled start time. Having previously watched them from the pit, from half way back by the sound desk and from when the stage was side on almost from the side, tonight I choose a balcony view from behind side stage which means I not only get to watch the band without obstruction but I also get to watch the huge crowd too. As the lights dim and the ‘Overture’ intro tape booms out the PA I can feel the beads of sweat already running down my head, heaven only knows how hot it must be onstage under those lights or down the front, as once again the opening trio of ‘Riot Squad’, ‘Watch Your Back’ and ‘Working’ send the (shock) troops into a veritable frenzy. I’ve seen Sparrer live a good few times now and tonight really is one of the very best performances I’ve seen to date (even right up there with that show stealing Hellfest slot a good few years back now) and its perhaps made all the more significant and special when mid set Colin asks Andy (the husband of Kathy Rocker) to join them onstage for a truly heart wrenching rendition of ‘Gonna Be Alright’.  Elsewhere from the 2017 album ‘Forever’ we get the awesome ‘One By One’ along with the tongue twisting ‘Nothing Like You’ whilst the rest of the set is packed full of classics like ‘AU’, ‘Runnin’ Riot’ and ‘Where Are They Now?’ and never mind how many times I hear these songs live I never grow tired of them. That Sparrer play for 80 minutes and it feels like 10 minutes also shows what an immersive experience seeing them live really is, and yes, I’ll be doing it all over again when they hit the UK club circuit for one last time in 2020 along with support from Spunk Volcano & The Eruptions.

Joining back up with Dom at the Opera House for the end of The Godfathers set (and in fact as it turns out the end of that band) we ponder for a minute about going to watch another band before the night is out, but me, I need to go back to the hotel to wring out my T-Shirt as that really was the kind of day Saturday was at Rebellion 2019. (JH)

Whilst Johnny went off to lace his Doc Martins up and iron his Fred Perry I stayed in the Opera House, took five and waited for The Godfathers to take to the stage. Starting the set with ‘Birth, School, Work, Death’ seemed like a great idea as the band sounded thunderous and little did we know what was brewing. ‘This Is War’ had Steve Crittalls guitar slashing like a samurai sword through the super locked in and tight rhythm section. It was a ‘Big Bad Beautiful Noise’ and it was, a Beautiful noise that is.  It was commented that the band was ripping it up and I think it’s fair to say that this was shaping up to be one of the performances of the weekend. ‘If I Only Had Time’ had never sounded so good and following that up with the flip flop of ‘Til My Heart Stops Beating’ throughout the fifteen or so songs the band played they were on fire and ending the set with ‘Defribulator’ seemed apt under the circumstances.

The band returned briefly for a romp through the Ramones ‘Blitzkrieg Bop’ and then they were gone.  Little did we know that some days later Peter was making the public removal of the whole band on Facebook! 

Sure it’s his baby and his prerogative to shake the lineup and hire and fire but Facebook?  From a fan of the music and the legacy of The Band I’m gutted – shit happens, I get that but this line up was channeling some incredible MC5, Stooges,  Detroit sounds which makes it all the more sad to see it unfold so publicly and after such an electrifying performance.

Alex, Steve, Tim, and Darren’s contribution should be recognised because they seriously rocked, it’s a real shame that the legacy of The Godfathers might very well be damaged  (I hope not) because I was buzzing after the set and that was largely down to the band who just played, Peter included. Who said Rock and Roll was boring? (DD)

Now over to Mr. Sutton to fill in the blanks of what else went on elsewhere in The winter gardens…

Saturday is something of a tactical battle as alcohol intake has to be tempered by an impending midnight gig to be played. As a result, many intended viewings fall by the wayside. ut there’s no way I could miss the Cockney Rejects and there’s also no way you can miss the full-blown Wonk Unit set after last night’s masterclass and it’s good to see a totally packed Club Casbah agree wholeheartedly. Two blinding sets in 24 hours?  Wonk Unit shit them!!!  The early day logistics meant that one of the bands I missed was Informal Society but that aforementioned midnight set we had to play at a fringe gig also happened to have Informal Society playing the 2am slot, so actually catching them was a real bonus, as the LA troupe really ripped out a high energy set for their second stint of the waking day.

Authors (JH) Johnny Hayward additional words from (DD) Dom Daley and Mr. Darrel Sutton.

Pictures of Alvin Gibbs, Gizz Butt, Cock Sparrer, Cockney Rejects courtesy of Dod Morrison Photography

All others from the shakey Dark Fruit sponsored phones of Hayward & Daley

When you get your debut album Produced by Flood (PJ Harvey, New Order, Foals) you have to e onto something don’t you? An album that features three singles already released from the band  “Feeling Fades”, “Green & Blue” & “Don’t Cling To Life” as well as their breakthrough song ‘More Is Less’.  Its give you a fairly panoramic vision of how the band sound.

post-rock on the two-part ‘Slowdance’, to the slower,  ‘On Twisted Ground’ a song about loss and keeping your friends close is simple in its bass notes leading the way. To finish the band lay into some industrial throb of the albums sign off ‘Love, Love, Love’, Its an extremely confident album that’ll see The Murder Capital hoover up an audience because at times I hear early U2 (don’t let that put you off) and that’s not a lazy connection due to their geographic existence.  They also touch on Joy Division and I’m also hearing shades of New Model Army thrown into the melting pot as well as a whole bunch of other bands I get flashes of.

There are times when it feels cold and bleak and other times it feels crushing and warm and every available space is filled with noise and that’s not an easy thing to do.  Especially not from a band on their first album. The album’s opener is better dressed than Idles but I guess comparisons will be made. ‘More Is Less’ is like a late-night bare-knuckle street brawl when the guitars kick in and there is an excitement captured in the music. Its an album you’ll have to invest some time in to get to grips with its widescreen appeal and one I can see peeling back track after track like an onion revealing different layers with every play. It’s easy to see how Flood wanted to produce this record and a fantastic job he’s done too.

About to head out the door to tour the backside of this album The Murder Capital are reaching for the stars and they might just catch themselves some.  An amazingly confident and complete debut in the field of alt post-punk or whatever you want to call it.

 

Buy When I Have Fears Here

Author: Dom Daley

Everyone knows the image of Paul Simonon destroyed his Fender Precision at a gig in New York in 1979, The image was captured forever by Pennie Smith. The moment was used for the cover of the band’s third album, ‘London Calling’. Smith originally didn’t like the shot as she has said it was too blurry but the band loved it and the rest is history. Going on to be ranked the greatest rock photo of all time.

Now, the Precision will be displayed at the Museum of London as part of an exhibition of more than 100 personal items, some previously unseen, all taken from the band’s archive.

Strummer’s notebook from the period as well as the typewriter he used to note his ideas and lyrics will also be on show, Mick Jones’ contributes handwritten album sequencing notes and Topper Headon’s drumsticks will be on display.

Simonon smashed his Fender Precision bass at The Palladium in New York City on 20th September 1979, when he realised fans were not being allowed to stand up out of their seats.

“That frustrated me to the point that I destroyed this bass guitar,” he said in an interview with Fender in 2011. “Unfortunately you always sort of tend to destroy the things you love.”

 

But the musician made sure he gathered the pieces of the guitar to keep. This exhibition promises to be an amazing experience for fans of the band and music fans in general.

 

Beatrice Behlen, the senior curator of fashion and decorative arts at the Museum of London, said the venue tells “the stories of our capital through the objects and memories of the people who have lived here”.

She continued: “This display will provide a brand new, exciting and vibrant take on this, showcasing rarely seen personal objects and telling the incredible story of how London Calling was, and for many still is, the sound of a generation.”

The Clash: London Calling, a free exhibit, runs at the Museum Of London from 15 November 2019 to spring 2020.

Today, California legends Redd Kross have released “When Do I Get To Sing ‘My Way’” the latest single to be lifted from their much-anticipated album Beyond The Door out August 23rd on Merge Records. On “When Do I Get To Sing “My Way’ Redd Kross reinterpret the beloved Sparks single with a new blast of fresh hooks and hum-able melodies.

About the cover, Sparks’ Ron Mael says, “Redd Kross has always been one of my favorite bands and that opinion was cemented when I heard their amazing version of our ‘When Do I Get To Sing ‘My Way.’ To do a version of that song with a completely different musical approach from the original while keeping every ounce of the original sentiment was an amazing feat. I love it!” “When Do I Get To Sing ‘My Way'”

Beyond the Door can be pre-ordered now on CD, digitally, and on limited-edition opaque purple Peak Vinyl in the Merge store. Redd Kross have also announced a massive US tour with the Melvins which kicks off on September 3rd in San Diego and includes shows in major markets including Los Angeles, Seattle, Boston, Philadelphia, Brooklyn, and more.

Beyond the Door is an album inspired by the band’s “total commitment to having the best f*cking time we can have while we’re all still here” (what they like to call “The Party”). Musically, it’s guitars, bass, and drums topped with a generous portion of sweet vocal melodies often delivered with an ambiguous edge. The album marks Redd Kross’ most collaborative record to date. Steven describes this evolution: “Jeff is still very much the driving force behind the compositions, but with more help from me than ever. Jeff and I haven’t shared this much of the writing and singing since Born Innocent in 1981.” Guitarist Jason Shapiro and drummer Dale Crover (Melvins, OFF!) are longtime members of the Redd Kross live band, but this album marks the pair’s recorded debut with the group. Mixed in Los Angeles by Steven McDonald, Beyond the Door includes notable guest appearances from Anna Waronker (That Dog), Geré Fennelly, Buzz Osborne (Melvins), and Josh Klinghoffer.

On the surface, the album title is a playful reference to an Italian horror film the McDonald brothers watched as children, a loose rip-off of both The Exorcist and Rosemary’s Baby that stars Juliet Mills of ’70s television program Nanny and the Professor. But like all things Redd Kross, it would be a sad injustice to stop digging there. No one knows what lies Beyond the Door… but we’re all in front of it.

Inspirations as varied as K-pop, glitter gangs, embarrassed tweens, long-term relationships, a mysterious character named Fantástico Roberto, and much more all contributed to Beyond the Door, an album that lures the listener into Redd Kross’ secret club full of riddles and inside jokes, with the ultimate reward of the perfect pop moment!

New album ‘Beyond the Door’ out August 23rd via Merge Records.

RELEASED 13TH SEPTEMBER (CANDLELIGHT/SPINEFARM RECORDS)
 
Leading lights of the UK Black Metal scene, Winterfylleth, return on 13th September 2019 with a brand new live album ‘The Siege of Mercia’ on CD/DVD and gatefold LP.
 
The album features a span of the band’s classic material – as well as a previously unreleased bonus track – and serves to demonstrate the formidable live abilities of Winterfylleth, as performed as part of their main stage appearance at Bloodstock Festival 2017. 
 
Bloodstock is often seen as the only domestic open-air festival to really focus on providing a stage for underground bands and they were one of the first to take a chance on adding Winterfylleth to their line up almost 10 years ago; something for which the band have always been grateful. Guitarist/vocalist Chris Naughton comments,
 
“Back then, playing the festival coincided with us releasing our second album ‘The Mercian Sphere’ (our first for Candlelight Records), and provided us with a huge platform on which we were able to launch that release. It was also the first time we had performed those songs on such a national scale. Having done so, our profile grew quickly and we were able to push the band forwards to where we find ourselves now. 
 
We have been fortunate enough to have been asked back to perform at the festival on a number of occasions since those early days, and it has always felt like ‘coming home’ when we do. Looking back, the highlight of all our appearances to date was in 2017 when we were invited to play the Ronnie James Dio stage. It was a great show for us”
 
Mixed and Mastered from the original desk recordings by long time collaborator Chris Fielding (Primordial/Electric Wizard/Napalm Death), with the live DVD footage professionally filmed on the Ronnie James Dio Stage,’The Siege of Mercia’ is an absolutely essential release for fans of atmospheric Black Metal. The band add, “with no overdubs, and a lot of passion; this is Winterfylleth live in 2017. We hope you enjoy it and we look forward to seeing you from another stage very soon! Until then…”
 
 
Winterfylleth are also currently working on the follow up to last year’s album, ‘The Hallowing Of Heirdom’ stating that, “we are also deep into the process of writing a new Winterfylleth studio album. Having taken a breather on the last record to make an acoustic album, we are now fully focused on a new, Black Metal album which we are hoping to record at the back end of 2019. 
 
The material that’s coming out so far is fierce, epic, triumphant and as emotionally charged as anything the band has ever done before, but this time it’s been honed through the filter of skills and writing experience we’ve garnered over the past few years doing a different kind of album. 
 
We’re hoping that what will come next will be a welcome surprise for our fans and a real statement of intent for the future”
 
 ‘The Siege of Mercia’ is available to pre-order now –Here

After waiting a decade for The Wildhearts to deliver their first new studio in May, they now deliver a new mini album featuring Diagnosis and 5 brand new tracks on October 4th through Graphite Records.

 

The Wildhearts are proud to announce the release of the Diagnosis mini-album on October 4th through Graphite Records. This six-track mini-album features five brand new songs and is released as a limited-edition special white vinyl with pale blue powder splatter 10’’ (to look like a pill) and as a regular black vinyl 10” and CD. All 3 physical formats will also include an exclusive bespoke inner gatefold comic strip illustrated by the award-winning Hunt Emerson, who last worked with the band on the Earth Vs’ cover and their classic logo.
The Diagnosis mini-album follows the success of Renaissance Men, their first full-length studio album in 10 years, which gave the band’s classic line up of Ginger, CJ, Ritchie and Danny, their highest chart entry since 1994’s P.H.U.Q when it debuted at number 11.
Well fuck me we dropped our first new album in 10 years back in May and blow me down if we didn’t drop a humdinger of an album full of monster riffs and razor sweet melodies. Well, we’ve not only gone back into the studio to record 5 new songs that will be released as the Diagnosis mini-album in October, we’re hitting the road too. We have some great supports confirmed already, The Professionals and Janus Stark and I know there are some other amazing bands to be added to the rest of the tour.
You’re going to love the new mini-album and the surprises we have on there and the tour is going to be one you should not miss. You can’t keep a good band down.” – C.J Wildheart.
The lead track Diagnosis is about “mental health institutions and the medical health profession in this country, and about how it’s letting people down. How the system is broken, and how the suicide rate is not getting any less.
Depression and mental illness isn’t an issue that attacks any one type of person. Whether you’re homeless or if you’re rich, this illness is taking people out on a regular basis. The government has pulled most of the funding into mental health research, and as a result, people are still ignorant about it.
Education is everything. And the more people talk about depression, the more need there’ll be for education, and the more people will want educating about an issue that doesn’t just affect the people suffering from it, but it affects everyone around them.
And when someone is in a desperate position and their hope is taken away, then they’re at the mercy of an illness that wants them dead. There’s nothing more important in the world than education on mental health issues.” – Ginger Wildheart
Diagnosis tracklisting
  1. Diagnosis.
  2. God Damn.
  3. A Song About Drinking.
  4. The First Time.
  5. That’s My Girl.
  6. LOCAC.
Format
CD
Cat number: GRAPHFAR35CD
Barcode: 5053760053057
10” vinyl
Cat number: GRAPHFAR35LP
Barcode: 5053760053064
10’’ ltd edition coloured vinyl
Cat number: GRAPHFAR35LPC
Barcode: 5053760053071
Digital
Cat number: GRAPHFAR35D
Barcode: 5053760053088
To pre-order the Diagnosis mini-album go Here
To coincide with the release of Diagnosis, The Wildhearts’ play a10 date UK tour. This tour will start in Brighton at the Concorde 2 on Saturday 5th October and concludes at Booking Hall in Dover on Tuesday 22nd October.
Can’t wait to get back out on tour. I’m one of those people that could live in a tour bus” – Ginger Wildheart
Creatively brilliant, The Wildhearts play a distinctive fusion of hard rock, perfectly complimented by contemporary melodies. With a career spanning 30 years, The Wildhearts helped change the landscape of British rock through the ’90s, and to this day they haven’t shown any sign of slowing down. Miss these shows at your peril.
The Wildhearts Renaissance Men tour part 2
with special guests The Professionals and Janus Stark on the shows marked *
October
Sat 5th Brighton Concorde 2 *
Sun 6th Reading Sub 89 *
Mon 7th Chester Live Rooms *
Tue 8th Hull Welly *
Thur 10th Holmfirth Picturedrome
Tue 15th Cambridge Junction
Wed 16th Bath Komedia
Thur 17th Southampton Engine Room
Mon 21st Wolverhampton KK’s Steel Mill
Tue 22nd Dover Booking Hall
November
Fri 29th Buckley Tivoli
European shows
October
Fri 11th Helsinki Virgin Oil and Co. Finland
Sat 12th Stockholm Fryhuset Sweden
Sun 13th Oslo Pa Bryn Norway Sold Out
Thu 24th Amsterdam Q Factory Netherlands
Fri 25th Essen Turock Germany
Sat 26th Paris Backstage France
Sun 27th Ooestende Manuscript Belgium
November
Sat 30th Madrid Sala Spain
Tickets and ticket bundles with new album pre-orders are available Here

With what seems like a couple of hour’s kip we’re up and at ‘em in the RPM Camp. Breakfast looked like it was on the critical list and had been out in the rain all night but we eat it all the same.  We have the dilemma over breakfast of who we won’t be able to catch due to the number of quality bands on today’s bill.

We wanted to catch so many bands today it looked nuts however we looked at it. It came down to the flip of a coin on what will forever be known as Fandabi-Friday (Don’t ask but our sides almost split).  If you need an explanation I’m sorry but it’s locked in a chest and buried at the bottom of the ocean off the North Pier.

TFG and Riskee & The Ridicule were on early so we had to take a pass on as it was our annual Ratboy Magic show but we got sidetracked on the way so missed the lot before we paid an early doors visit to the Empress to catch a bit of brass courtesy of The Popes Of Chillitown  (that our esteemed fellow writer Nev recommended) they kicked up a fair old racket with their ska /punk hybrid and nailed it.

Everywhere we looked there was someone we wanted to watch – Miss Fragile in the Almost Acoustic – The Snivelling Shits in the Opera House but it was Knock Off  who got the nod as they knock out their street punk which they claim is fuelled by the state of the country and play like it with added anger and disillusionment and on this evidence its hard not to disagree even with their technical difficulties the band deal with it and get on with business and turn in a solid performance. We hang around to catch Dragster in Club Casbah who have a great new(ish) ‘Anti Everything’ album under their belts.  Fi and the boys were cutting a fine jib upon their return to the festival and they sounded ferocious. They attacked songs like ‘Anti Everything’ and ‘Vultures Circle’ and the epic ‘Death By 1000 Cuts’. It’s always good to hear ‘Dead Punks’ the band play like their lives depended on it and it would seem that the punters were out early enjoying the audio assault. With Fi spending a lot of the set on the barrier getting amongst it and the band dog deep by dragging up ‘Eat The Dirt’ from their debut back in 2006. A tonne of energy and a raft of tunes that are getting better and better.

We quickly realised we haven’t yet been to the Opera house and it’s already Friday evening.  but it has to wait a little as were back in the Casbah to catch some of Disciplines set (whilst over in Empress TV Smith was playing ‘The Lord’s Prayer’ so we’re reliably informed).  Discipline did a split some years ago with Argy Bargy so to have a one-two jab from the Dutch boot boy rockers followed by Argy Bargy’s return in Casbah at Teatime for the RPM bootboys was a real treat. Discipline were good To be fair and their love of all things PSV came across loud and clear.

  It was a most welcome sight as Watford John rustled up a tea time treat with some choice cuts from the most excellent album ‘Hopes Dreams Lies & Schemes’ as ‘Looking For Glory’  sounded fresh as the first time they played it. We were also treated with songs off ‘Drink Drugs & Football Thugs’ call it Oi! Or Thug Rock but I’ll just call it quality Rock and Roll and a most welcome return it’s been today in the Casbah.

To have a break we wander through the labyrinth of backstage corridors to navigate our way quickly around the venue and find ourselves in the surreal surroundings of the Arena.  Nothing different with the venue it’s just Brazils action figured self-proclaimed Billy Idol Of the Amazon Supla S&V along with his trusty accomplice for the evening is Victoria Wells as the due knock out what can only be described as house meets dance meets punk sampled mash up whilst wearing a nice blazer and skin-tight shorts.  I kid you not – Supla is out there on his own when it comes to entertainment and vision but the good people of The Winter Gardens didn’t get the memo and the dynamic duo of dance were left playing to a few clued up disciples.  As for what the songs were? Fuck knows. Your guess is as good as mine. Anyway, we too had to cut and run as Spunk Volcano and The Eruptions were about to take the stage back in our haven that was Casbah.  The temperature must be about 120 degrees plus (it certainly seems like it) and the most sensible person in the room seems to be the guy in the pants…oh hang on he’s wearing a woolen balaclava with just one eye!

There’s no fucking about here and the bodies start being flung around in an impressive pit as the band doesn’t have time to fuck about and it’s straight into ‘Death Or Glory’ from the impressive ‘Double Bastard’. sure the classic SV tracks are present and accounted for like ‘Hanging Round The Shops’, ‘Shit Generation’, ‘Ram Raid’, ‘Xr3’ and ‘Sellotape’ and ‘CrossFire’ as the Rebellion audience sing along in all the right places  and by the end of the set the Casbah is full to bursting and for the next few hours at least I can’t get ‘Knobhead’ out of my noggin’ I even think he dedicated to us as well, how rude but bloody entertaining.

Right it’s just gone 8 pm and we’ve not stopped for any food yet so whilst my colleague is on the blower to his union to see if it’s lawful to have this much fun and no breaks I’m off to the chippy before Duncan Reid goes Acoustic.  Right, That was a quick hour and without delay, we’re back in Almost Acoustic to catch the full set from Duncan Reid & The Big Heads and after a few of those dreaded technical difficulties were off and running and Mr. Power Pop is showing exactly how to write great pop tunes that can be played both electric and acoustic as the pub like venue joins in the sing-a-long and we all have a jolly good time. ‘Kellys Gone Insane’ from the debut solo record sounds fantastic as does ‘The One’ also from the re-released debut record. ‘Cèst La Vie’ is aired from that difficult second album along with ‘Long Long Gone’. Duncan shares some very nice words for his former bandmates in The Boys before cracking open a take on ‘Brickfield Nights’ where Nick Hughes did a very commendable job on Matts vocals.  It only leaves ‘First Time’ and a standing ovation seems about right – Always smiling – always looking like they’re having the best of times -its infectious. 

We head out the door for a wander knowing we can catch the end of the UK Subs set over in the Empress after a cheeky dark fruit we head upstairs to see the subs do what the do best and thats kicks out the jams in what felt like watching a band inside an oven on 180.  The band show no sign of relenting as they justify their prime spot on the bill once again.

We head outside to wring off the t-shirt again before catching some of the Stranglers set luckily for us we caught a portion of the set where they played a few classic Stranglers ‘Peaches’, ‘Nice N Sleazy’ and ‘Duchess’ we go for a walk around the balcony and by the time ‘Something Better Change’ erupts I’m done.  the heat has got the better of me and I bow out.  After what has once again been a full-on Fandabidozy Friday in The Winter Gardens wandering from room to room catching band after band all offering something different but mostly offering exceptional quality. Now if I could be in two places at once then now would have been a good time to give that ago.  Luckily for us, Mr. Darrel Sutton was on hand at the same festival but watching totally different bands to us so without further waffle over to Mr. Sutton…

 

Friday sees an extended pub lunchtime forcibly ended by a raging (ouch) set from Ohio’s Raging Nathans.  I’ve wanted to catch these lot for ages, having actually booked them for a date on an aborted tour a few years ago, and they do not disappoint. Between song banter is kept to a minimum and Josh Goldman and crew literally rip the arena a new one with a fast and frantic set that Zeke would have struggled to match.

A few hours in the RPM inner circle sees me catch Discipline, Argy Bargy and Spunk Volcano in an exhausting triple-header before an enforced break sees me return to catch Leftover Crack in the same venue.  A band that have never grabbed my attention for any prolonged period on record, their live show is positively intense.  The subtleties of their ska-infused records are pretty much abandoned in a total rager of a set.  A quick venture into the Stranglers set in the Empress is curtailed by the unbearable heat of the utterly packed room and a very wise decision to grab a pew for what is billed as Alex Wonk’s acoustic set.  However, it soon becomes apparent this isn’t going to be a solo set as the full Wonk Unit line-up (Ok so Kenny only gets up for one song as Alex is back on six-strings) are crammed onto the stage.  And that’s also where the normal acoustic rules also go out of the window with chairs being discarded, a pit being formed for most songs and even two human pyramids and numerous crowd surfers popping up along the way.  The likes of ‘My Nagging Wife’, ‘Awful Jeans’ and ‘Lewisham’ lose none of their charm through being unplugged and alternate versions of songs like ‘Go Easy’ in an acoustic form further add to the charm.  A total master stroke to round the day off.

Popes of Chillitown, Argy Bargy, Discipline, UK Subs pictures courtesy of Dod Morrison Photography.

All other pics courtesy of Johhny And Dom.

Author: Dom Daley & Darrel Sutton

Its August and this week sees us roll with our comprehensive Rebellion Festival round-up so why not run our twent choice cuts from our perspective.  We’d have listed the likes of Zero Zero and Rotten Foxes but they’re not on Spotify so we’ve gone with a solid old and new twenty plus.  Check em out there has to be something for every taste in there. Remember kids don’t just stream go out and watch these bands and buy their merch and music.  It keeps them making the music we love.

 

It’s the first weekend of August and that can mean only one thing for the more discerning music fan as all roads (or as in our case trainlines) lead us to Blackpool for the annual Rebellion Festival. With one of our mates setting an all new record by taking 13 hours to get to the punk rock capital of the world (well for this weekend anyway) me and Dom Daley feel positively smug getting to our hotel for a 2pm check in and on site as planned for the first of the weekend’s rock ‘n’ roll action and the first of many stage clashes to follow.

It’s probably best I get this elephant out of the room right away really as with 7 stages and over 350 bands playing (just in the Winter Gardens never mind the fringe events) it would take  a football team of reviewers to cover everything on offer and with just me and RPM Editor In Chief Dom Daley on duty this weekend you’ll have to forgive us if you are in a band that played and we didn’t get to see you, as even with some of the bands we did want to catch, things like; band interviews overrunning, turning up at the wrong stage and waiting for 20 minutes before you realised it was the wrongs stage (yup that was me) or even something as simple (but essential) as getting something to eat, just got in the way. So, with this in mind, go pour yourself a libation, sit back and relax and sweat along with us as we take you into the heart of the action at Rebellion 2019.

Kicking things off for me this year are The Kingcrows, a band I’ve wanted to check out live ever since I reviewed their ‘Funland’ album for Uber Rock way back in 2015 but I always epically failed to do so.  Today I’m in the Arena early doors to make sure I catch all the sleaze punk anthems from their latest ‘Brute Force and Ignorance’ album, like ‘Saturday Night Rock City’ and ‘City Kids’ and what I along with the very healthy looking mid-afternoon crowd get is a lesson in how to play your music and enjoy every minute of it. If you can imagine Soho Roses playing Oi! with KISS guitars and like the sound of that curious hybrid you do need to go check out The Kingcrows, because they really are impeckable (ouch!)

Hot tailing it over to a packed-out Club Casbah just in time to catch the tail end of Mille Manders and The Shut Up’s set, Millie with her leg in a cast still manages to cut a commanding figure out front and the double sax attack of ‘Obsessive Transgression’ is enough to get me breaking into an impromptu early afternoon skank. Playing ‘Bacchus’ (a song about drinking) at Rebellion is always going to be like pushing at an open door and is an instant crowd favourite. Its when The Shut Ups tackle ‘Pretty Green’ though that they really show their true class making the Jam track sound like one of their own and promptly hitting the ball right out the park.

With a few minutes to spare between bands I quickly stick my head into the Pavilion to catch Time For Action and get it promptly knocked off by the band’s swaggering Manc attitude. Playing tunes from their debut album ‘Turn It Up’ the four piece’s set gives their old school punk influences a Samba trainer up the arse and in the process makes them immediately stand out.

Having been together for almost 4 decades Brazilian hardcore punks Inocentes are legends of the scene and that’s why the Empress Ballroom is very respectably full when I arrive ready to get a good spot for The Bar Stool Preachers. Stuart “Psycho” Pearce is stood next to me too most probably still trying to make amends to Brazilians worldwide for his blatant handball back in 1990. There’s no excuse for the Fergie-time Inocentes seem to magic up at the end of their set though and the time constraints it imposes on the band due to follow them.

Not that it really bothers The Bar Stool Preachers who sauntering onto the stage to ‘The Ecstasy Of Gold’ already look like all-conquering heroes as the house lights reveal a crowd of over 3,000 people packed into the Empress at 5pm on a Thursday (see what I meant about Thursday no longer being the warm-up day in my preview) and with opener ‘One Fool Down’ proceed to take the bloody roof off the place.

‘Trickledown’ follows and T.J. McFaull is (for once) almost lost for words at the crowd response then we are quickly into ‘Warchief’ and the avalanche of crowd surfers begins. It’s during ‘Choose My Friends’ that I notice Cock Sparrer’s Colin McFaull stood side stage and I half hope he’ll appear dressed as Hilda Baker to share the female lead vocal, sadly it’s a no this time and Tom delivers this thrasher solo for once. A new track (which I think is called ‘Late Night Transmission’) follows and this could see the band moving in a much more Clash-like direction with their follow up to ‘Grazie Governo’.

With the Rebellion family celebrating the life of Kathy Rocker along with other lost friends this weekend T.J. dedicates ‘Start New’ to his good friend and then it’s all over in the blink of an eye with a rousing ‘Bar Stool Preacher’. With a US Tour with Bouncing Souls and The Bronx to follow almost immediately after this weekend before the band return to the UK for a ten-date headline tour in September I can but wonder if 2020 will be the year The Bar Stool Preachers get to headline the Empress Ballroom. What do you think?

Looking to cool down after the sauna of the Empress I catch the last song of Dead Objectives playing to a packed out audience on the Introducing Stage before quickly hot footing it back to the Empress once more for New Orleans hardcore punks Pears, yet another band I’d wanted to catch live for some time.  Sadly technical issues with Zach Quinn’s microphone means the band’s normally explosive music is lost in stuttering translation for the first few songs and its only when they break into ‘Mollusks Mouth’ that things truly start to fire on all cylinders. Still with songs as fantastic as the multi-platinum selling (yeah right Zach) ‘Victim to Be’ in the set the earlier sound issues are pretty much soon forgotten.

Taking some time out to grab some much-needed sustenance and to try and cool down I’m quickly back in the sweltering heat of Empress in time for Birkenhead’s very own glam slammers Queen Zee and thankfully I’m not alone in wanting to see them. There’s an almost tribal thump to the glam meets grunge majesty of ‘Lucy Fur’ and the epic ‘Loner’ is where most people will find their entry point. I really don’t want to try and force Queen Zee into some kind of musical pigeonhole as they deserve so much more but ‘Sissy Fists’ which closes things out this evening actually reminds me of Exit_International so I’m sure you’ll agree that’s high praise indeed from RPM Towers. Politically on point with ‘Victim Age’ the band’s choice of backdrop hammers their inclusive message home too and in ‘Fuck The Pain Away’ they have their perfect cover song.  This time last year I witnessed Idles wow an early evening crowd at this very same festival, Queen Zee today give me the exact same buzz. New band of the weekend for me by a long mile.

With Dom promising his old mate Dave Sharp he’d catch him live on the Almost Acoustic stage I tag along hoping to finally cool down with a quiet pint and some Dylan-esque background music, however the place is rammed and hotter than an oven so I leave behind the folk ballads and instead head over to the Club Casbah for some D.I. back in Europe for the first time in over 30 years. Having never been a D.I. fan back in the day but having a few close mates who were and still are I was hoping hearing songs like ‘Chiva’, ‘Pervert Nurse’ and ‘Johnnys Got A Problem’ live might make me an immediate fanboy but even with the crowd going absolutely bananas around me it still all kind of washed over me. That’s not saying the band were poor, far from it, it just didn’t fire me up like The Adolescents (another band I wasn’t a huge fan of back in the day) did just 12 months earlier at this very same festival.

Moving back to the Almost Acoustic stage for the second set of the day from The Bar Stool Preachers I thankfully can’t get into the venue itself as its rammed to the rafters and instead I end up standing (or make that manspreading myself) in front of the only functioning air conditioning unit in the adjoining bar area. Playing a set consisting of tunes largely missing from their earlier Empress set I can but once again marvel at the magic these 6 guys create, and if the call and response during opener ‘All The Broken Hearts’ doesn’t move you to tears then you really are without emotion. Dom finally gets to hear ‘Raced Through Berlin’ live so he’s beaming from ear to ear too as are most of the crowd in fact, who unlike with most of the other shows on the Almost Acoustic stage are all up on their feet and dancing. Rumour has it that the Preachers tried to cheat and sneak a drum kit into their performance tonight, but I reckon they could do this stuff on kazoos and still get people involved, such is their appeal.

Having admitted to you already to not really having liked D.I. back in the day, one band I did love and still do is Portland Oregon heavyweights Poison Idea. Their ‘Feel The Darkness’ LP is one of my all-time favourite hardcore albums so with the prospect of catching one of the last four shows they will ever do on UK soil as part of their ‘The King Is Dead’ tour I found myself letting out an excited little squeal as the band takes to the Casbah stage…but I must admit what follows isn’t exactly what I was expecting. In fact, it takes until ‘Plastic Bomb’ a good 5 or 6 songs in before anything really starts to kick me in the head the way the band did back in the late 80s/early 90s. Working without a set list seems to be the root cause of this and whilst spontaneity can and does work in small clubs here playing to over a 1,000 people it leads to some quite long between song silences which just doesn’t work for me and seems to sap the energy and momentum from the performance.  I want Jerry A in my face and bleeding not pondering over which song to play next and as such even when they do eventually play ‘The Badge’ they’ve kinda lost me already. I love Poison Idea and whilst I enjoyed some of tonight’s set it could and should have been the one I was shouting about loudest but I’m not and that right there is what hurts the most folks.

With Poison Idea playing one of their last UK shows at Rebellion 2019 Fear, over forty years into their punk rock career, are tonight playing their first-ever show on UK soil and Club Casbah is suitably packed out for such an event. Lee Ving might look more like an aged teddy boy these days but he still spits out the 1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4 mantra like a teenager and tracks like ‘We Destroy The Family’, ‘I Love Livin’ In The City’ and  ‘Fresh Flesh’ all sparkle with the magic of that seminal ‘The Record’ LP. Yes the band can at times have a loose almost falling apart approach to their art, and Lee’s tendency to sing rather than shout the songs makes them something of an acquired taste, but with the hour fast approaching 1am and my eyes starting to feel more than a little heavy they still manage to keep me enthralled something I fear (ouch) the Empress headliners The Descendents would never been able to do. Still each to their own I suppose and what a great way to finish day 1 of Rebellion 2019. See you in just a few hours folks…that is unless you are doing one of the fringe events well into the wee small hours…in which case see you tomorrow night, maybe?

 

Author: Johnny Hayward

Pt 2 sees a brief summary from Darrel Sutton who managed to catch a whole bunch of band John and Dom missed so without further waffle here goes…

It’s been quite a while since I last made the pilgrimage to Rebellion and, despite having to fit in the small matter of performing two sets with my own beat combo, I was gonna make damn sure I’d try and catch as much of the stellar line-up on offer as the heat and stupid amounts of alcohol and schmoozing would allow.

As well as spending far too much time talking utter shite with my RPM amigos I also sloped off and caught quite a few bands with loads of other acquaintances (such is the nature of Rebellion, allowing catch-ups with old friends from all over the place).

A hectic start which takes in the obligatory Millie Manders and Bar Stool Preachers sets gets a serious adrenaline blast from In Evil Hour whose Rise Against tinged set translates perfectly from the club stages they’ve ruled over recent years to a packed Club Casbah. Vocalist Al positively rules the place and it sets the tone nicely for a quick dash into the Arena to catch Wiltshire’s finest sons The Blunders.  The trio has always been a bit different with their quirky acerbic tunes of disdain and disgust and this slot combined with their slot at Boomtown is no less than they deserve and staples like ‘TV Bastard’ and ‘People Get Smaller’ positively rip.  The festival’s pace doesn’t really slow as the temperature shows no intention of dropping and so with the alcohol kicking in a bit of a break, via a pretty tidy few songs from Diablo furs in the Pavilion, sees me return to action in the company of Flipper. The Arena is, luckily from a heat perspective, not too full to see David Yow and Mike Watt complete a legendary line-up for the band, but unless you are a total nostalgic die-hard their open salvos made The Melvins sound like the Ramones, so I slip off for a much more uplifting closing trio of the Bar Stool Preachers acoustic set, Poison Idea and Fear and a dehydrated stroll back to the hotel.

Bungle, Poison Idea & Fear pictures courtesy of Dod Morrison Photography

Ahead of the new album ‘Devour You’ the band have released a video for ‘Bet My Brain’  along with pre release details Here

Produced by Nick Launay (Nick Cave, YYYs, Arctic Monkeys), ‘Bet My Brains’ distills Starcrawler down to its essence with a massive guitar riff, rollicking drums and a widescreen performance by Arrow de Wilde that illustrates just how ready this band is to explode into the mainstream. The band are busy touring throughout the USA in October and November to coincide with the album’s release  on October 11th