Now I have to be honest, given the choice of sitting in a field with 125,000 of the hunter welly wearing brigade, swopping anecdotes about how much I’d always wanted to see Kylie, or worse still sitting at home watching the BBC sanitized version moaning about how I’d missed out on taking out a second mortgage to buy tickets in the faint hope there’d be someone there I liked, there was only ever going to be one winner tonight. Lets get Skanking to a night of Ska punk, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones bringing the party to the o2 in Bristol.

 

Walking in to the o2 about ten minutes to start, I’ll be honest I was just a little bit nervous for the Preachers, to say it was sparsely populated would be an understatement. Worries however were short lived, by the time the Bar Stool Preachers hit the stage we had a more than sizeable audience, vastly different to the last time I caught them in the Exchange. Right from the off you can see that the months on the road have sharpened things up, they sounded huge!!! You can’t help but dance, with Tom, the demented ringmaster presiding over the maelstrom of noise. Now I’ve followed the bar Stool Preachers since they were a twinkle in Tom’s eye, reviewed both their LP’s and watched them change and adapt and grow going from an out and out party band into a politically charged machine (The guys arrived from a guerilla gig outside No10) and the place exploded when a personal fave from Grazie Governo “Don’t let the door hit you on the way out” was dedicated to probably the most inept prime minister Britain has ever endured, that is until Boris rides in on his white charger, put in place by the fcking idiots who vote Tory!!!

As the band have grown in confidence the sound has developed, the message getting stronger and stronger, I turned to Johnny H and said “They’ve been listening to too much Steel Pulse” (How far off the mark am I TJ McFaul?) After all Ska came out of the dancehall, mutated into Roots Reggae and there isn’t a genre more politically charged. A rapidly swelling crowd got more and more into the band and the whole place, looking round had a huge smile on its face and no doubt some dodgy knees this morning, Trickle Down, One Fool Down, Bar stool preacher, set the tone, but the newer stuff played tonight has the potential to put them in the shade. I for one can’t wait to catch them in Clwb Ifor Bach on September 21st

 

Next up we had a band I’d caught live in Camden Underground Sonic Boom Six and in fairness at that gig they really brought the noise and the party it was mental, but tonight I’m not sure if that sound translated into a bigger venue, there was a definite struggle for an identity present and I wonder how much management have become involved? They just didn’t seem the same band, or maybe it was just down to the fact that the Bar Stool Preachers had blown my mind, but where the one band is pushing forward, the other seems to be changing direction and not quite sure which way to go.  Both bands loosely tied together by the word Ska.

Now The Mighty Mighty Bosstones are a band I caught way bag in the day and if memory serves me right they played the Cheap Sweaty fun’s 10th anniversary gig originally scheduled for Tj’s but displaced to The Irish club after a difficult personal circumstance for Tj’s owner John Sicolo.

 

They were Fckin awesome then and tonight watching them sober they haven’t changed a bit and the party atmosphere just grew and grew, we had skanking, we had dancing, we had crowd surfing everything a proper gig needs and it was relentless, the o2 getting hotter and hotter, going thermo-nuclear way before the end. Before you even realized we were an hour plus in and tracks like “Someday I suppose”, the cover of the Wailers “Simmer Down”, “the Rascal king”, “The Punchline” had all flown by. These guys are the consummate professionals and all nine of them, yup nine on one stage made movement look so effortless as they changed positions, danced off and brought the brass section to the fore. What a performance. Now if I had to pick a winner tonight it would have to be The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, they are a real heavyweight in the Ska punk division,  been there done it got the T-shirt, but there is a young contender from Brighton coming up through the ranks very quickly.

Great night did I miss Glastonbury? Not in a million fckin years and tonight for once sound was spot on for all the bands, happy days.

 

Author: Nev Brooks

????Sinners and Revellers???? Bringing you Sundays headliners, Deaf Havana! Joining Camden Rocks for their first ever London festival headline! Also announced are rising stars Our Hollow, Our Home, Britpop veterans Hurricane#1, breakout indie trio GLASS PEAKSThe Lottery WinnersRed Rum ClubSworn AmongstOrchardsKOYO and more!

For more artists just announced and to explore festival playlists ➡️ www.camdenrocksfestival.com

They join already announced Frank Turner, Ash, The Wonder StuffRAT BOYNew Model Army,WheatusCarl BarâtGinger WildheartThe Professionals.Angelic UpstartsMILK TEETH,Richie RamonePretty ViciousRaging Speedhorn,Random HandDischargeEliza and the BearThe VirginmarysArea 11Sonic Boom SixChamberlain,The Last Internationale[spunge]BANG BANG ROMEOLOTUS EATERRews and hundreds more of the best in live music across indie, rock, punk and metal ????

Day and weekend tickets available from £40 (subject to booking fees) ➡️ www.camdenrocksfestival.com

Camden Rocks Festival 2019
1st & 2nd June
The next wave of artists for Camden Rocks Festival 2019 is here! The multi-talented punk and folk singer-songwriter Frank Turner is joined by hitmakers The Wonder Stuff, Random Hand, Discharge, Richie Ramone, The Professionals, Eliza And The Bear, Sonic Boom Six, Area 11, Spunge, Shvpes and ninety other phenomenal bands across indie, rock, punk and metal announced.

They join the first wave of acts that includes Ash, Ratboy, New Model Army, Wheatus, Carl Barat, Ginger Wildheart, Milkteeth, Pretty Vicious, Raging Speedhorn, Angelic Upstarts, The Virginmarys, The Last Internationale, Bang Bang Romeo, Rews and many more.

This year Camden Rocks Festival is a two day event for the first time! Bringing you 400 artists across twenty grassroot venues in Camden Town.

Get out your microscopes and open up a spreadsheet to map out your days.  If you were to ask us here obviously the star attractions of The Wonderstuff and Ash will have their fans but watching The Hip Priests, The Spangles or Rich Ragany & The Digressions is where the gold dust is.  We’ll be doing our bit on the run-up to the event when we know venues and band times and let you know where we’ll be heading.

Tickets

February 2018

Foulmouthed Filthy February or something like that.

February began with a road trip to see a band who for me has been my go-to pilgrimage in North Wales for The Gathering weekend for the last quarter of a century (almost). A weekend celebrating the music of Mike Peters & The Alarm reached a high point on the Saturday night as a Four-hour performance rounded off an impressive weekend. I’ve enjoyed going for almost quarter of a century where special guests have included Billy Duffy, Craig Adams, Steve Diggle, Pete Wylie, Dave sharp, Ian McNabb, Eddie McDonald and a whole bunch of other musicians I’ve forgotten and I’ve managed to attend without missing a single year.

I must admit the thought of such a marathon performance on a Saturday night filled me with dread can any fans watch for four hours? The answer is a resounding yes! It flew by and was one of the best Saturday night shows I’ve ever seen Peters perform especially when he was joined on stage by Craig Adams for the final hour (that still doesn’t sound right – the final hour). Roll on February 2019 when I can do it all again.

 

Staying on the live front, Other RPM scribes went to some far-flung countries to catch their Rock n Roll with Craggy taking in an excellent show from Fertile Hump live at Kabinet Muz, in Brno. but a large gathering of writers took in a show or two when the Damned went around the UK this time with the added excitement of Paul Gray back in the fold for the first time in decades which was rather nice.  Seeing the Damned with a new album in tow and playing sold out shows all across the UK in decent sized venues was awesome and it has to be said so were the band.  Gray seemed to give them a right shot in the arm just in time for this stint of dates was easily the highlight of February. But with the recent news of our Brother Scott Sorry battling a serious illness the Rock and Roll community rallied and a series of benefit shows were arranged to raise funds for Scott at such a difficult time what with the American Health system being what it is  The likes of Role Models, Main Grains and  The Empty Page rocked out at The Parish to rave reviews whilst Wakefield Warehouse saw the Professionals, the Wildhearts, Massive Wagons and Sonic Boom Six take care of business and send Positive vibes across the ocean as well as money raised at these spectacular shows.

Before Feb was done The UK also saw the return of Bullets And Octane and Ben attended a memorable show in York that proved that Gene Louis had lost none of the fire he had inside his beating heart when he first toured the UK.

 

As for recordings to hit the shelves, historically early in the year, things open slowly in the music business and January being about new resolutions before finally seeing new releases hit the shelves, so, Feb saw an avalanche of really big hitters for RPM writers.  We had the release of Imperial State Electric’s Live album ‘Anywhere Loud’ as well as some garage awesomeness from the likes of the Cavemen and The Bellrays getting round to release records. 

Several writers were also impressed by the latest Buffalo Tom long player ‘Quiet And Peace’ with Craggy picking it as one of his albums of the year. February belonged to a few foul-mouthed releases, the first came in the shape of Jonesey with their self titled long player with its down n dirty sleazy punk rock n roll and song titles and lyrics that would make a sailor blush no doubt about that. But one of the years highlights hit us like a sledgehammer between the eyes has to be Motherfuckin’ Motherfuckers with ‘MFFFMF’ (I think that’s the correct amount of F’s) inspired by Supershit 666 and the idea of some friends from the most splendid Bitch Queens and Oz and Lee from the mighty Hip Priests recording a mini album packed full of songs that were written in the shortest of times. I’ll let Lee Love tell you, good people, what happened, ” Ah the dumb Lee Love story. Well, me ‘n’ Oz went To Basel for a few days to hang out with our mates from Bitch Queens and we ended up getting pissed (as you do) and I was winding them up saying I could write and get em to record a mini album in a day. So we went into the Queens studio the next day and played through everything once maybe twice and hey presto it was done”.  Creating that Copters supershit 666 vibe.

To be fair this pack of loons rose to the occasion and absolutely knocked it out of the park in fact they didn’t just knock it out of the park they followed out tied it to the back of their pick up truck dragged it around the wood then kicked any life left in it out then did it all again for shits and giggles.  An absolute giant of punk rock n fuckin roll – make no mistake about that! Motherfuckin’ Motherfucker should and one day will rightfully be seen as a classic of its genre.

 

Also, The motherfuckin’ Dwarves were taking back the night in February as well and a jolly fine record that was.  Maybe it should be renamed Fuckin’ foulmouthed February from now on.  What a month. Outstanding stuff.