MOB/ZOUNDS 4 LONDON
The Mob, Zounds, Rubella Ballet and much more Friday 18 Nov Brixton Jamm a.. Doors: 8:00pm b.. Price: £12 advance, £12.50 door All the Madmen Present: Weird Tales 2011 Full Line Up: The Mob Zounds Rubella Ballet The Astronauts The Hamsters Idiot Strength Andy T THE MOB There is something uniquely English about The Mob which to this day is difficult to define. A loose, understated eccentricity. A visceral emotionality and a strangeness, fuelled by their association with free festivals and LSD and exemplified by the Porky Prime Cut messages scratched on the inner groove of their records: ‘Acid Punks’, ‘Take a trip down’ etc. Unlike most of the Crass-type bands, The Mob never offered any solutions or calls for action. They simply described how things were and how they felt. While Crass et al attempted to inspire through anger, The Mob inspired through being truthful, honest and un-judgemental. While some put forward pacifism as an answer and others direct action, The Mob offered no answers at all and in this respect they were just like ‘us’ because ‘we’ also had no real answers. We all knew the world was wrong but none of us really knew what to do about it. It is this aspect of The Mob that makes them very important in the scheme of 1980’s anarcho punk rock. (and the current climate.) They are closer to ‘the people’ than most other bands, closer I imagine than they ever really knew. Though the music they played is relatively simple, the sound the band made is very big and it translated well from small squatted venues to more sizeable and established venues, from small audiences to larger free festival audiences. Equally important of course, the sound translated well to each listener alone in their homes and this ‘personal connection’ is something that resonates with Mob fans old and new. The Mob that is currently performing is the original three members Mark, Curtis and Graham reunited after 28 years, alive and well and tighter….. and as potent as ever before . Let The Tribe Increase….. ZOUNDS Legendary English underground band Zounds first came to prominence in the early 1980s with a string of independent chart hits on Rough Trade and Crass Records. Growing out of the squatter communities of London and the south east they quickly became key figures in the burgeoning D.I.Y. anarcho-punk scene and toured Britain and Europe with contemporaries such as Crass, The Birthday Party, Poison Girls, The Mob, and many others. On record their sound was a little more expansive than many of their punk contemporaries. Their Rough Trade album ‘The Curse Of Zounds’ is now seen as a classic of the genre and one of the most inspirational albums of the post-punk period. Since their early 1980s heyday Zounds have only played and toured intermittently. Song writer and lead singer Steve Lake is notoriously reclusive and can only rarely be persuaded to come out and play. The current line up is Steve Lake – guitar, Paul O’Donnell – bass, Paul Gilbert –drums. Their new album ‘THE REDEMPTION OF ZOUNDS’ is out now. HTTP://WWW.MYSPACE.COM/STEVELAKEZOUNDS RUBELLA BALLET Rubella Ballet formed in 1979 by Sidation (Flux of Pink Indians), Zillah Minx, Pete Fender & Gem Stone (Fatal Microbes) at the Crass gig at Conway Hall where Crass invited the audience to use their equipment and finish off the evening doing their own thing as they wanted and left the crowd in charge, so Sid being 6” 9 inches tall and at the front of the stage climed up with Zillah and jumped on Penny’s drum kit, Zillah grabbing Steve’s mic, Pete & Gem jumping staight up and taking the bass and guitar, plugged in and started playing. Sounding like rather organised chaos this was the start of a very colourful part of what was and is the British anarcho punk scene. Sid was also drumming for Flux of Pink Indians as he lived near the band with Pete Fender and Gem Stone (Fatal Microbes), son and daughter of Vi Subversa who lived with the rest of Poison Girls at Burghley House in Epping (before the M25 ploughed through it) Sid went on to drum on the single Tube Disaster that Flux released on Crass records as well as composing the music for the b-side ‘Sick Butchers’ and ‘Background to malfunction’ at Dial House in the studio Crass rehearsed in. Flux did many gigs with Rubella Ballet and Sid ended up playing for both bands every night. Sid left after about a year touring with Flux to play full time for Rubella Ballet. The band are well known for their tribal power, haunting lyrics, psychedelic stage show and the use of nothing more than a UV lights, strobes and a bit of smoke to illuminate the band, the music has the same innovative psychedelic qualities fusing punk, tribal, dance and absolute weirdness into a myriad of music styles. Zillah Minx is synonymous for the shock value of wearing home made ultraviolet hand painted day-glo clothes along with their multi coloured day-glo hair do’s through the east end of London’s, dark, violent, poor, ghettoized, shithole, (a direct result of Thatcher’s Government) everywhere they went not everyone smiled and laughed, some people started hurling abuse or wanting to beat them up or even threaten to kill them for being so different. Zillah Minx original punk in 1976 created and designed her own day-glo death rock clothes scene that has been copied by bands and clothes designers throughout the world and keep glowing and growing around the world. THE ASTRONAUTS The Astronauts were formed in the late 70s by singer and songwriter Mark Astronaut and were active participants in the burgeoning free music scene instigated by Here and Now. They played many dates including the infamous Weird Tales Tour with Zounds and The Mob and a myriad other artists of the time. Musically and lyrically diverse they did not fit easily into any convenient pigeon hole, which ensured that, to an extent, they were seen as peripheral rather than central to the “punk movement”, although spiritually and idealistically sympathetic. http://www.astronauts.org.uk THE HAMSTERS Formed in march 1979 and split while what would have been a debut album for Fuck Off records in December 1980, in that period they played with Joy Division and the fall on a regular basis and frequently guested on the wierd tales tours with the mob, androids of mu and zounds , always volotile going through 8 bassists in that spell the end came as no surprise. a brief reunion crashed after 4 gigs in 1983 , a further attempt at reconciliation ended mid first gig in 2002, egos alcohol and drugs now more under control the 2011 hamsters have already managed 2 radio sessions and a gig without imploding, they are as ramshackle and high spirited as ever. IDIOT STRENGTH Idiot Strength formed in Bristol in 84, played sporadic gigs in various squats and venues around Bristol. The original line up was Mathew Brett on drums (now sadly deceased) Giles Coe (Bass) and Steve Corr (guitar and vox). They moved to London in 86 where they carried on in the same sporadic half arsed kind of way they’d started. In 1986 they made a demo that was to be a split album with Watt Tyler. Steve Corr then became guitarist with Blyth Power in their second incarnation from 87 – 90 which kind of side lined Idiot Strength a little. Mathew Brett left to go traveling and was replaced by Andy Tuck who had previously played with Thatcher On Acid and later with Schwartzeneggar. Matt was soon followed by Giles who was then replaced by Chaz (Charles Loft) formerly of Flowers in the Dustbin fame. The band continued in much the same manner. Chaz left after a year or so and was replaced by Bob Butler (Also a member of Thatcher On Acid & Schwartzeneggar and now playing with Steve Ignorant) All three members of this later incarnation came originally from Yeovil and the surrounding area. During their time in London time they had various lead guitarists, the last of whom and perhaps the best was Dan who had previously played and sang with Blind Mole Rat. Andy Tuck quit sometime around 94-95 and a two other drummers were recruited the last of whom “Yowla” is now playing for Adam Ant on his latest tour. Sadly the band never recorded and stuttered to a halt in 96. Bob, Steve & Andy recently played a couple of songs at the recent Mob gig in Bristol and again more recently at the secret Mob Gig at the Macbeth in Hoxton. ANDY T Anarcho punk poet from the 70’s/80’s. Re-energised and re-awakened 18 months ago. Performing with a band these days. Old & new material seems as relevant as ever, for these troubled times, ahead.