Decades ago in a world slightly different than today’s, there was an indepenedent music scene that mattered to people. Bands didn’t sign to major record labels and travelled to different countries using people as promoters that weren’t trying to make a living, just trying to make a differencec. It was a completely idealistic way of living and of course most of the bands had to stop as the world suddenly hit them with bills that needed to be paid or maybe they just wanted to live somewhere. The promoters also aged and some moved to paid jobs, whilst others tried to keep going and make an honest living out of it. It worked for some and didn’t for many.
Technology intervened which made things easier and so much harder in other ways. Finance became more important as technoilogy needed to be paid for and expectations rose. Not really a bad thing I guess.
One such band that flew the flag for many in that underground were nomeansno. They didn’t champion it in their words, just in their actions. They toured relentelessly, always puttting on a great show and released records on the independent label Alternative Tentacles. They morphed into Hanson Brothers when they needed a Ramones esque release and eventually the world caught up with them too.
Nomeansno were the brothers Wright helped at various times by Andy Kerr or Tom Holliston on guitar but it was the drum and bass sound of the Wright brothers that drove the band. Songs were anthems and never let up. When the band finished it left a gaping hole. Now many years later John Wright has started Dead bob. John was the drummer in nomeansno and this form continues in his latest band.
When the opening track Just breathe kicks in tt could almost be the next nomeansno record. All those years quickly forgottten with the pounding drums being the engine of the songs, Johns voice leading the way and the bass providing the gears to move it along. White Stone Eyes seems to reflect on much of the populace standing still while things are moving around them. By the time we get to the fifth song in it starts to create its own identity which is a positive thing. This is not John Wright missing his brother Rob and trying to recreate the old days. No Tomorrows pounds along slowly and That was too easy is more of your straightforward guitar bass and drums sing along song. John is putting his mark on this record. But that voice, man that voice just brings me back. It soars along.
It has a supporting caste of all his friends from his nomeansno days but this is far from a follow on. It’s a new departure with a nod to the past. Like the way the world has moved on since those diy days it is still relevant to our everyday lives and this is one record to put on loud and enjoy.