Rebellion 2017 – Day 2

Before every trip to Blackpool I sit down, pore through the lineup and pick out the must see and the nice to see. I have a problem today. 34 bands are on the list. That may not have been an issue for 18 year old self but it is a problem. It will sort itself out over the 13 hours.

The way I see it is that I’m a sponge and rebellion is my education. I may never see some of these bands again, we may never be in the same country together so I want to make the most of it. Let’s go for 34

Poly-esters were new to me. Playing in the huge empress ballroom, home to Darts, they engaged and rocked the lunchtime crowd.

I’d been looking forward to seeing Petrol Girls. There’s a scene of bands out there that have wiped gender breakdown away. Of course it doesn’t matter what gender you are playing in a band but Petrol Girls are screaming out about misogyny and sexism and their toe tapping noise is a glorious soundtrack to that manifesto. Petrol Girls are top of the pile throwing away the punk stereotype and ready to challenge you if you’re too comfortable.

Matilda’s Scoundrels from Hastings have that folky punk sing along feel. You want to be in their gang. Im struck by the fact that they seem to be the first band not selling merchandise as the 6 piece take over the stage.

I guess the real mackenzies are a Canadian version of Matilda’s Scoundrels, it seems bizarre to me but Canadians in kilts singing about drinking and playing bagpipes is something I’ve missed out on. For years though I ignored drop kick Murphy’s and am now a convert so maybe there’s hope for me for the real mckenzies. To be honest I hope not

Interrobang are taking music and adding some theatre, trying to unsettle the crowd but playing angular music. It’s not in your face but they are looking to reach into your heart. Dunstan sings like he is starting in Chumbawamba once more and he is still angry after all these years and will never calm down. We need bands like interrobang telling us they as mad as hell.

I’ve been communicating with Doug from flies on you in various guises over 30 years it all started when he was bass player in nerve rack and talking about playing in ireland. That never happened and decades got lost. Now he is on the “new” band stage with flies on you who have two great albums out. Doug has dropped the bass but the acerbic sound remains and it’s a fall-esque sound, well starts with the fall and nerve rack and mixes a whole lot more in. Great to see them on stage.

The featherz brought some glam to the day, at least for the three songs I caught. Nice change to the wall of noise on offer elsewhere.

Dave dictor tempted us last night with acoustic versions but tonight was the turn of the powerful MDC, more relevant than ever.

I missed the FU’s when I started listening to American Hardcore. Boston punks exploded on the stage tonight. Even treating us to some straw dogs sings which is what some of the FU”s became for a while.

Subhumans never change, even if some of the personnel do. They are still as good as they were, and playing many of the songs they played in, the youth expression Centre in an early 1980s dublin. These are another necessary feature of Blackpool. Again more relevant now as our political structure becomes more similar to the 80s.

Same with DOA, Canadian punks screamed for change in the 80s. Lead singer Joey keithley ran for office. They wanted a better future. They got a different one, better in many ways but the question remains was it worth it? This three piece were are as fast and powerful as anything else today with some tunes there screaming out

 

Attila The Stockbroker is on great form. Not just politics but emotions too. It must be so frustrating for any artist with all talking going on in the background in the acoustic room as people settle in for a drink and a chat. Attila defied them and told us all about the band we should form called “winter vomiting bug” which was dedicated to the band sick on the bus. He gave some newer poems which detail how working class people are still second class citizens despite all the years of words

I never saw or listened to Frank Carter before except when he was in gallows who I didn’t enjoy that much. At one stage he got a circle pit going right round the hall and just like the junior b hurlers they ran and ran badly in that circle

It’s been an interesting festival as the politics of today has lead to a lot more statements from bands on stage. If we can’t talk about what’s going on what can we talk about?, and bands grasped that. They have also reached out to those struggling with mental illness and this punk rock community should know it’s ok not to feel ok and just talk if things are getting to you. We are all in this together, whatever this may be. Frank Carter reminded us of words Petrol Girls had spoken earlier, it’s fine to be down just share it and let’s look after each other.

Membranes are special to me. This is their home town, well it’s not really but it’s the original bands birthplace and singer john Robb, is the sole remaining original band member. They have diversified in recent years and the post punk sound is still there but drone and power are the main traits on display. Tonight they have the backing of a choir which just adds to the sense of surreal spectacular in this car park stage

Wonk unit are increasing in popularity by the day. Each gig sees them getting more popular. Second last band on the empress tonight and Earlier they played a stripped down version of their set in the acoustic room. Not even room to stand. Empress crowd weren’t left standing, we were too busy moving our feet.

Their good friends slaves followed them. For a two piece they can sure fill out a stage. For a drummer with two drums and 2 cymbals there is some sound on stage. At times it felt like maybe, just maybe, they were trying a tad too hard but the power was something else, as was the visuals

I wasn’t sure if their style of humour would suit that big stage. But it did. Alex treated the crowd as if we were visitors to his regal home, sticky dance floor and all. Wonk unit have been described as a modern day snuff and that’s not far off. They will play any gig, won’t get lost or worried in the trapping of success. And they listen to punk rock and know they are no different to us watching them. Perfect.

Kiss my acid were the first of many Irish bands for me to see today. Snotty abrasive tunes with green day playing grunge feel.

I am a car crash are gaining interest. It’s easy to see why, more rock than punk and more post the pre, it was great to see the dublin lads on the big arena stage.

Protex played the opera house. It gave us a chance to sit down, relax and enjoy their power pop tunes.

Lee Harvey’s have a 1978 feel to their sound but with power. Close your eyes and they could almost be part of that northern Irish good vibrations scene. Great set.

Paranoid Visions pack some power. Deko says they are tjebhate of the city’s well there’s a certain section thaysboroud of them. Singing and powerful as if killing joke had attitude for dinner. There is a large Irish contingent at rebellion playing and spectating. Most of these were in the large pavilion crowd tonight as the visions played more recent material and are as strong, prolific and valid as ever

Ok I didn’t quite make the 34 but managed to squeeze in songs from Godfathers, the Professionals, and Bono too

Niallhope

Hope Show 113 – the lowdown

Hope Show 113
1. Pup – reservoir
2. Pup – Dark Days
3. Down By Law – rebel Conformist
4. Bangers – The Pits
5. Maxwells Dead – Home
6. Black Flag – TV Party
7. L.O.T.I.O.N. – Computers Don’t Have a Heartbat
8. Apes Brigade – The Interrogation of the Good
9. Protomartyr – Dope Cloud
10. Sleater Kinney – Bury Our Friends
11. Martha – Chekhovs Hangnail
12. Bedford Falls – Anodyne
13. The Great St Louis – Mooresy
14. No Monster Club – Late Bloomers
15. Kevin Seconds – Only Drug
16. KatJon Band – Machine Gun and the Ugly Doll
17. Flies on you – Action Stations

I’m loving the new Pup album out now on Side One Dummy. Two stand out songs in particular Dark Days and REsevoir – had to play them both.

Down By Law are old faves of mine. I lost a bit of interest when singer Dave Smalley started propgating American Republican politics, they released an album last year ad are touring Europe towards the Summer

Bangers are a punk rock band from Cornwall

Maxwells Dead are on the wonderful Make That a take records singing about the punk scene in the UK. They feel part of the punk rock community that I too feel happy to be part of. They are my neighbours that I’ve yet to meet

Wanted to take a turn and move things heavy for a few songs, in case you think I was mellowing out so I reach for the trusty Black Flag. US Hardcore at its hardest.

L.O.T.I.O.N are industrial punk from New York City, pretty interesting group of people

Apes Brigade
are an intersting group from Marseille who sing in English

Goober Patrol brought out a great split with 7 Day Conspiracy last year with their ‘tribute’ to their party holding government right now – Tory. Wonder what we will be singing about in Ireland after our general election next week?

Hardly Art has some interesting bands including Protomartyr from Detroit, the more I listen to them the more I like them. They are playing Dublin at the end of March

I missed Sleater Kinney when they played Vicar Street in Dublin last year, I wanted to go but it wasn’t to be, like a lot of things the real world takes priority. Martha are flying a flag that Sleater Kinney were involved in raising. DIY rock inspired by strong independent women, showing that you don’t have to be a woman with a gimmick to be in a band. Martha from newcastle are strong exponents of diy lo-fi intelligent indie pop rock punk.

The Great St Louis and Bedford Falls go hand in hand and when stories get written abut influential tuneful UK didy bands these two will be up there and with Leatherface be seen as great great bands. Funny how they can slip through cracks. Thankfuly we still have Bear Trade and Stay Clean Jolene to keep us excited about it.

No Monster Club from Dublin have a new album on the way, this isn’t on it but I havent got my hands on the record yet, I will and I will play it. I love their swagger.

Kevin Seconds was and still is the voice behind positive US hardcore band 7 seconds. There’s an introspective mood to tongihts show so I’m going with a solo song from the great man.

I saw the KatJon Band play one of their few gigs in Amsterdam a few years ago. Kat, from the ex, joined john langford from the mekons + three johns on stage and played as a two piece. Love this record

It’s been a fairly mellow show tonight with some good tunes being the basis for it. For me it’s the calm before the storm as I get ready to head out on another protest march on the streets of Dublin. We, as a nation, will get a chance to voice our collecitve opinion on the poilitics of austerity and (in)equality and the show tonight reflects a sombre mood. It’s a case of what might be or could have been. but let Flies on You finish us off tonight while we sing along to their anthemic chorus
“Please bring down the forks and spoons,
Please bring down the plates and bowls
Please bring down the dirty clothes
And pleeeeease…… bring down the government”

Enjoy

niallhope

Hope Show 111 – The Lowdown

shelltosea

http://radioactiveinternational.org/hope-show-111/

Hope Show 111
1. The Blades – The Last Man In Europe
2. Mighty Midgets – Burn After Rolling
3. Wonk Unit – Nan
4. Bad Brains – I and I Survive
5. Jinx Lennon – Conquistadors of Gas
6. Ghost Mice – Samhain
7. Weakerthans – Watermark
8. A Witness – I Love You Mr Disposable Razor
9. The Modern Lovers – Government Center
10. Flies On You – Hangdog
11. Down and Outs – Our Independence Day
12. Down and Outs – Forgotten Streets
13. Antidote – I Don’t Care
14. Eastfield – Three Chords Good, Four Chords Bad
15. The Domestics – Orchestrate Your Pose
16. Billy Liar – Is It Me?
17. Bill Blood – Just Got Paid
18. David Grubbs – A Dream To Help Me Sleep
19. Hands Up Who Wants to die – Burnt Yesterday
20. Stay Clean Jolene – Heads and Breakables
21. Rvivr – Wrong Way / One Way

I love the Blades, They are from DUblin and are at the stage now where they do an annual show. The Last Man In Europe was released in 1986 and sounds like it could have been yesterday.

I wrote a piece about TNS Records, one of the first in my series of labels of the week. It has an extensive and wide reaching catalogue. All comes down to punk rock though. Mighty Midgets are from Denmark and Wonk UNit from London. Power and Pop mixed.

“Why must all people keep on shooting and a robbing
Why must all people keep om killing and a fighting”

What else can you say? Bad Brains. good for many things. I saw a documentary on DC punk during the week and Bad Brains were spoken of as strong influencers and the Rock For Light album really is a groundbreaker. This is one of the few songs that don’t take you on an energetic trail of destruction with its speed.

I picked up a very interesting triple Cd during the week, Songs Of Solidarity and Resistance. Three cd’s full of music and a booklet documenting the Shell to Sea campaign and all the battles along the way for the rossport five. Jinx Lennon’s conquistadors of gas talks of the how many view the taking of Irelands Natural Resources. More infor here

I read with some dissapointment recently that Plan-it-x was shutting for business . So many great releases but it just shows that it is ordinary people behind these great labels and sometimes it’s hard to sustain all the creativity all the while living your life alongside it. You can still get their releases to date from No Idea records

The Weakerthans have released many great albums. This is from the Canadians initial Left And Leaving

A Witness have a strange quirk about their pop and any band that can sing about disposable razors has to garner some respect. Back playing these days, look out for them.

I bought my first ever Modern Lovers record during the week. Of course I have Road runner on many compilations but the Modern Lovers is my first album to own by Johnathan Richman. Better late than never I suppose.

Flies On You have plenty of plans for the year ahead. The two piece from Leeds brought out the etc. album yesterday. A post punk, post goth post everything collection of sounds with the drum machine, guitar axe and steady bass to accompany Doug’s gnarly voice

Down and Out’s have a sizeable back catalog, Liverpool punks usually offer a fast pop punk sound but I picked “Our Independence Day” and “Forgotten Streets” to show their diverse collection for tonights show

Antidote appeared on a punk shit compilation with a song I don’t care, guess they are not interested in being on a radio show either. It’s interesting how many different viewpoints that fall under the punk rock banner, I guess it’s like a classroom, everyone has a different view. We are all individuals after all.

Eastfield are from Birmingham, their understated new album, “Another Boring Eastfield album – a rail punk colection” is out now as is the Domestics Keep it lean, an interesting hardcore band from East Anglia not to be confused with the rock band form Portland.

I’ve seen Billy Liar a couple of times, one vulnerable man and an acoustic guitar. He batters and belts out the chords in a frenetic and energetic setting.

Bill Blood is almost the opposite. Laid back and reflective. One man and his guitar but so many ways to play it. Bill is Niall from Dublin legends, Redneck Manifesto.

The David Grubbs song is from a compilation benefit that has an excellent soundtrack. It is a benefit for producer J. Robbins son Callum and J has produced and played in many great bands. David Grubbs has played in many greats also.

Hands Up Who Wants to Die brought out their Vega In the Lyre album in September 2014. A collection of hard hitting noise rock punk songs as opposed to punk rock noise.

Stay Clean Jolene just have great songs. Why haven’t you got the album yet?

Finishing tonight with RVIVR, I just love this song and would play it every week if i could. Sometimes I go jogging and if I’m struggling up a hill or against the breeze I pop this song on and smile and look for a brighter future. Sing along
“Wrong Way down a one way street, Promising myself that I just don’t care”

 

niallhope

Any flies on us?

Flies on You
Fan Base Repellant
diy digital only

Leeds avant garde punk rock duo have given us all a late Christmas present with the follow up to the excellent etcetera album which was released in march this year (still can just about say that)

They take a beat, repeat and doug talks acerbic over it, Some are catchy, some try and catch you out. The lyrics take in any punk rockers life, property and crass. At times I think maybe Chumbawamba could have headed down this road, its the kind of way they would head, if there were only two and a drum machine.

A great Christmas gift but even if not quite up there with the excellent etcetara

niallhope

Epic Problem – Lines EP

Epic Problem
Lines EP

epic problem lines ep

So how do you like your music? It’s a pretty hard question to answer isn’t it? Me, I like it all ways. Depends on the mood I suppose. I can take redneck manifesto or god is an astronaut and their post rock instrumental offerings. I can take flies on you and their electronic take on post punk. I can take post punk and the stripped down bare wail of a guitar riff over lofi guitars and drums. I love when bands mix this all up but deep down I love an anthem.

My anthems aren’t Bon Jovi or soft rock. They are short sharp fast songs that you can scream along to. Screaming is important. Top of your lungs shouting til your hoarse. Maybe even a few woooooo-oohs in there too for good measure

Epic problem provide that in abundance. 4 songs of single word titles with sing along loud vocals and speedy tunes. This is great, another record of the year

niallhope

Flies On You – Nothing To Write Home About

Flies On You – Nothing to write Home About

I Love that bass sound. It’s like JJ burnell from the Stranglers has joined nomeansno. I have this album on loop for a few days and Am loving it.

I remember a world of compilation tapes and hand written letters we mailed to each other. I had nerve rack on quite a few of my tapes for a while and Doug from flies on you is a fixture in both bands. Nerve Rack also had that bass sound but flies on you have the drum machine to suck you in with some post punk tunes. You’ll be singing along to lines you never thought possible if you give them a chance.

As a union activist I attend diversity forums from time to time – if there was a forum on albums I would make a case for this as it dips into different modes – almost mob, rudimentary peni, de kift, riff based punk with Doug snarling at you most of the time.  and then there’s some dance a dub version of the exploiteds dead cities which dougs daughter sings in. This is greAt – please try and seek them out.

Winner  – “Josephine ”      josephine

for the line – “You wouldn’t want a holiday in my head, well I wouldn’t want one in yours either””