Definitely one of my favourite venues/centres/whatever - The Sumac plays host to the following event. The Sumac is an anarchist run ‘not for profit’ which does loads of great stuff to help the world. Google em’, check em out, get down there etc - no big business punkiness here.

So off we go straight into the bands with a bit attached on the end about the kind of crap which is going down in Greece. Firstly however I would like to hear some noise for young organizer James who was himself arrested for squatting in Greece along with mates, some of whom were tortured. No armchair activism here, thank goodness.

Quite a mixed bag of acts tonight but all with passion and compassion to give a damn.

First up, Ash Victim and Daniel Kemp. Acoustic folk duo with punk sensibilities. These young lads were spot on and seemed to be trying to make some sense of the world we live in whilst at the same time make it a better place. Something we all need to take responsibility for. Songs about politics, looting, killing fascists, ‘singing my songs’ and er, zombies and murdering the girlfriend.  My kind of thing actually. Ash played some great acoustic guitar which at times made me think Blyth Power whilst Daniel interchanged between violin and mandolin. At times determined folk but not in a mayhem sense. They were chilled and sometimes almost ethereal. If Phil Ochs had lived long enough to impregnate Nick Cave then this duo might well have been the protesting baby. This gig was part of a DIY tour they had put together so keeping it real throughout and as one of the songs said “I can't believe in nothing any more”. Quality song writing from hearts which care - spot on. I hope our paths will cross again.

Next up for a quick 5 minute slot comes Dwane Reads, here reviewed by Rachel Eagling:- Dwane gets up and does what he does best "Reads".  What comes over though is the strength of his writing. Thoughtful, witty and real. Dwane, dependable as ever, turns up early, all the way from Derby, full of enthusiasm and support for the other performers.  Dwane's enthusiasm is infectious as he does a poetry set that incorporates new stuff and takes him out of his comfort zone. Dwane gets up and launches into "Could You Be A Clown" which evokes clear childhood memories of the circus. You can smell the grease paint, feel the planks we sat on and see the tears in the eyes of the clown with the big smile. Having got everyone's attention Dwane ,changing the tone,  moves on to discuss dinosaurs and how we learnt to spell their names.  The young audience really get the next poem about people who waste valuable time blogging, with Dwane getting rapturous applause.   On a roll Dwane launches into "4 dollar Wrinkle Trick" and deafens those assembled with a blood curdling scream . Prompting assembled women to lock themselves in the bathroom to use a face mask from now on. Dwane, having earned the attention of all present, even those at the bar, finishes with the powerful "Dumb Down The Nation" which is received by a grateful audience who have chosen  to drag themselves out on a Friday night. I for one look forward to when Dwane Reads again.”

After Dwane is EAGLESPITSHEXX, who are Eagle Spits and Hexx (aka Kosmischeboy aka Dan Doughty). Here’s Dwane Reads thoughts on the duo:-“ Great things come to those who wait. For approx five years in this case. Sometimes it can be worth it. I first came across Eaglespitshexx on Soundcloud. Now to experience them live at the Sumac Centre Forest Fields, Nottingham - a wonderful welcoming venue that has so much to offer, not just as a meeting place, but for information,f ood and the odd drink. I recommend you check it out.

So, opening with ‘Faceless Killers’. It's haunting, harrowing horror synth punk that makes you want to curl up into a ball and rock. Yet the rhythm relaxes, over shooting rays controlled via laptop running software mini keyboards noise glitch generator. How to get back to reality is anyone guess. But you know what for the moment I just enjoy. The audience tonight are captivated, whilst the next track 'Simon Cowell' follows there are cheers of ‘We hate telly’. Next up get your tits out for the babs. Still the hum of the keys accompanied with the upsetting smiling truth delivered by an angry angular Man to the boom mic stand. This is Eaglespitshexx. The swirl of Cabaret Voltaire meets Throbbing Gristle, mixed with vocals is original and orderly rather than complex where other bands would crash and burn.

Spanner -  anarchist ska punk from Bristol in the mould of Citizen Fish. Awesome.! Their idea of punk is “fighting back and creating good shit”. I am a fan already. I had never seen Spanner before and until being asked to play the gig I had never heard of them, my loss. I loved em’, me and The Mrs danced throughout. She to such an extent I seriously thought her face had turned into a tomato. In fact there were no still feet in the place. The revolution might not be televised but it sure as hell will be fun. Anarcho, anti authoritarian stuff with song titles which include ‘Border Regime’, ‘Choose To Refuse’, ‘Raise Your Sights’ and ‘Uniforms’. Spanner are passionate about what they do and why they do it. This is ska punk to dance to but it’s real and dirty. Obviously there was little love for an old lady who passed away this week but the venom was honest and the trumpet player was great. So edgy, passionate, skanking, anarcho anti fascist, anti capitalist determination from a band who get up, get you up, get you dancing and get out and try to change stuff. Can’t really go far wrong can you?


"Let’s not give free reign to our jailers, strike the tiger’s heart every day, in every way, according to our differences, against the sadness and solitude of our cells of confinement.” – Os Cangaceiros

Our Solidarity Is Non-Negotiable

Doors kicked in at the early hours of the morning by armed thugs, fascists roaming the streets for migrants, systematic torture implemented by the para-military police, social cannibalism in everyday life, this is the cold hard reality in Greece.

Over the last few months, the Greek state has made its intentions clear, to eradicate all insurrection against the maelstrom they have unleashed upon the streets, particularly aiming at the liberated spaces, where the control of everyday life is defied.

Our solidarity in non-negotiable when it comes to our fellow anarchists, our conflict with the prison society is one and the same. Through this benefit we are breaking the cells they have put around us, reaching across borders that do not exist for us, an eternal embrace for our comrades. We know that fundraising and words are not enough alone, that the words must become praxis in order for them to enter through the prison bars. It is only until we put fire to the cells on the outside and the inside can we truly speak of solidarity.

Solidarity to squats, open and liberated spaces in Greece, to all the prisoners in the cells, you are never forgotten, our continued resistance will remind you that we will one day burn them altogether.

review by Gary & Rachel Eagling plus Dwane Reads (15 April 2013)