1. Crabby - tell us about your role in Impact and how it came to be plus a few details about your own personal punk history?
My involvement with Impact really started way back in the depths of time, as I was the singer in Destination Venus, a fun filled punk band also featuring Rick Rocket & Roblad. We played together for about 10 years before we split. Rick & Rob then started playing again with Stu the bass player and tried a few other people in the band, but nothing really worked, and then Stu left to live in Nottingham. That left just Rick & Rob, which obviously meant the band was seriously depleted in the good looks department, so they asked me to add some charisma! And while I was at it would I give the bass guitar a bash. We soon got things back on track, but this time with a harder hitting sound, so we changed the name to suit the change in music, and Impact was born. We later added my old work buddy Lee to add some hot licks!
My personal punk history started when I was about 11 I think. Me & Rick have been friends since birth as we grew up next door but one to each other, and I remember him playing me a Dickies single, and about the same time, a friend from school had an older brother who played me 'Kill The Poor' and the UK Subs 1st album. That was it for me, it was punk all the way from then. The 1st album I ever bought was 'Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables'. I’ve loved all kinds of punk since.
2. What are the best and worst CD's in your personnel collection and what is your fave Impact song?
Like most of us, my best CD changes all the time, at the moment it’s Poison Idea’s 'Feel The Darkness', but I’m counting the hours til I get my hands on Sloppy Seconds imminent new album 'Endless Bummer'. The worst one is probably...well they all have redeeming tracks, if they were that bad I wouldn’t have bothered keeping them. There may be some dodgy vinyl hiding in my collection though! My favourite Impact song at the moment is 'What’s Going On?' because its fast and punk and great for jumping about and screaming!
3. Heroes and zeroes in life and music mate?
Heroes – What are heroes? I don’t do that hero worship crap, I love music & football but I’ve never got starry eyed over people just because they are good at it. I’ve met a few famous people but never had the urge to get their autograph or anything. There are people I have huge respect & admiration for. My parents get a big nod in that direction. I’ve got a few mates who I have known since we were kids, who I know would & have stuck by me when needed. Zeroes – Anybody who selfishly takes advantage of others, from a personal basis e.g. burglary, rape, mugging, right through to multinational companies & governments using their clout in developing countries to only benefit themselves.
4. Crabby - an interesting nickname - have you ever had a relationship with a crab or any other crustacean for that matter and if you had the chance would you marry a starfish and spend the rest of your life living in a rockpool! Details regarding any sexual techniques with bivalves would be helpful to any budding aqua-deviants out there!
It is indeed an interesting nickname, which came about when I was a kid, due to the mishearing by a young piss taking friend, of the word cramp. Cramp involves the involuntary stiffening of appendages of the body, which alas has never happened to me when in the presence of any crustacean, so any relationship with one would be doomed to failure. The only incidences of aqua-deviancy I have experienced are swimming pool related, and involve sharing goggles to take turns!
5. Your main gripes and joys about the current scene and how does the scene today compare with when you were a young un'?
The main gripe is the lack of support for lesser known bands I suppose, but then again I’ve been to see some well known bands and the turn out has been piss-poor! The joy is that punk rock is still alive and screaming, that I can still watch bands, and play gigs that are punk rock. Differences I can think of are, you no longer see glue-bags at gigs, you don’t get people begging for spare change outside gigs anymore, you very rarely get the threat of violence hanging over gigs now when it was common place once upon a time.
6. What are your main influences in life and music mate and if you could compare yourself to one character in literature who would it be?
The main influences in my life have been firstly my parents and in later years my wife & kids. In music I have been influenced in 2 ways I suppose, in one way it’s the bands who have impressed me either in live shows or great songs/recordings, and the other way is the great people I have been lucky to have been in bands with. All influenced me to buy, watch, play, write and ultimately love music. The literary character I would like to compare myself with is James Bond – brave, debonair, suave, nerves of steel, jaw droppingly handsome, cool as fuck. However most people would probably compare me with Plug from The Bash Street Kids!
7. Best Impact gig to date and aaggggghhhh - the worst! Gory details are essential!
My favourite Impact gig is hard to choose as I always enjoy playing, but the one I can think of at the moment was the allday punk gig Rick organised recently in Stoke. There was a good turn out, the atmosphere was great, some cracking bands played and Impact got a cool response from the audience. I got pissed as well, that always helps! As for the worst, I can’t think of one, we've done a couple with crap turn outs, which nobody in a band enjoys greatly, but we always have a laugh.
8. Action Man vs Stretch Armstrong in a todger tug of war - who will win and why plus would you eat the roasted genitals of Dickie Davies for the chance to win a life time supply of Chivers Jelly (lime flavour of course)!
Thats a tough one, as Armstrong obviously has the benefit of his fantastic elasticity, but Action Man has the advantage of gripping hands! But when it comes down to it I’m rooting for Action Man as I’ve fought many battles and had many adventures with him in the past, whereas Armstrong was just a one trick pony! As for Dickie Davies’ Dicky...I’d steer clear of that thank you, even for raspberry jelly. But Gerald Sinstadt’s suave moustache.......that’s a different matter all together.
9. If you could put on your ideal all day gig - who would be on it, where would it be and would Arthur Scargill be invited to do a strip?
Ideally it would be within staggering distance of my house, so our local town hall would be good, as it’s right close to my local as well. I’d open the gig with somebody decent and well known to get the party started early, none of this waiting til later for the bigger bands, so I’d pick Green Day. Them opening at noon at Biddulph Town Hall should get a few local punters in! The rest of the day I’d have Street Dogs, Poison Idea, GBH, English Dogs, Instant Agony, Goldblade, Dropkick Murphys, The Expoited, The Dickies, UK Subs, and smattered between these I’d have local bands District 6, Oral Asphyxiation & Section 5, and I’d have Impact play about 6 o’clock before I got too pissed. The end of the gig would be The Queers followed by Toy Dolls. That would be a mega-day I reckon.
I wouldn’t like Arthur to strip but I’d have him judge a competition to see who could stick the most shredded wheat on their head!.
10. Describe your fellow band members in 5 degrading words each one of which must relate to a trifle!
Rob – “Usually the last to arrive” As a dessert arrives last.
Lee – “Could make your mouth messy”. Not that I would know.
Rick – “Sometimes contains too much alcohol” Like a sherry trifle.
11. If you could change one thing about the scene what would it be and also describe the scene and what it means to you in 3 sentences!
The one thing I would change about the scene if I had a magic wand (not that one deary!) would be more promoters of larger bands/tours/festivals giving lesser known bands a chance.
The punk scene has been a part of my life since I was a young teen. It has given me great times, caused me to travel and see many places I wouldn’t have done otherwise, and given me the chance to meet some great people. It has been a major influence on my political and moral outlook.
12. And finally push the band and convince us that Impact are a must see.
I reckon we are a half decent band, we are open and honest and appreciate any chance to play given to us. Whenever we play we give it all no matter where or who is there, and most people who have seen us seem to enjoy it. So if you could give us a gig get in touch, or if you fancy seeing a tight hard hitting punk rock band then come to see us. You can check us out at www. myspace. com/impact3