The first gig review of 2017 and all because I have been so busy on many other fronts that something has to give. I am fagged out as per, chasing my ass and disappearing under a mountain to things 'to do'. Passion has a price but fuck it - no use worrying over a theme that will never change - onwards. Tonight offered three bands that I had never seen and knew fuck all about - tis the best way and still, after 40 years lapping up punk noise, the thrill is in seeing new vibrations. Due to this being my debut viewing on all 3 fronts and, as I type this, my mountain bike is behind me begging for a ride (ooh the sexy machine) I keep things brief, to the point, off the cuff and slightly stained with a streak of ambiguity.

Gaff entered, tins purchased and a wag of the mandible with that fine gent that delivers to the punters much liquid relief (oooh very nasty) and some solid banter (Daniel Marsh take a bow - but watch yer back bro). Up to the gigging room, more natter and the first band pinged up and painted their punk picture with strokes of sonic sincerity and sweat-ridden attention. Clan of Anarchy were a 3-piece, they came with confessed learning difficulties and for me that was always a winning aspect. We are all struggling, transparency is a beautiful thing - top marks given already. The set was a robust affair with the skin-slapping giant truly zoned in and wired up and giving the tympanics are right old leathering. The bass was carefully plucked rather than wildly fucked and the guitar was thrashed, fuzzed and honestly buzzed whilst the manipulator shot his gob off and let the verbals spill with focus. A few blips snuck in but, as a DIY punter, this only heightens the reality and keeps things approachable for the ones off stage. The fuck you to ADHD was a choice highlight and a few catchy riffs caught the virginal senses and intrigued the curiosity levels further. I think the band will only get better with time, I can see untold potential here but make no bones about it, this was good enough for me and a bonus ball early on in the noise-laden year.

Act 2 - Tripwire DC - a 5-piece and a band that combined the age-old elements of punk, ska and reggae and played, for me at least, the best set of the night. The punkish moments were the weakest, the skanky moments upbeat and revitalising, the reggae cuts perfectly paraded and thoroughly structured so as get the old inner muscle twitching and the sonic soul pulsating to that darn groove baby. The coupling of the vocals was sweetly put across with the front louts lilts shadowed with saccharine exactness by, what I am sure he said, was his daughter - a nice touch. Vocals were switched further in the set when a string bod stretched his tonsils and overall the variation injected, the capabilities proffered and the moulding together of three fine genres was all done in a most palatable way. A couple of songs fell short of a lofty mark for me, as stated these were the ones most punked up, but they were crucial to the set and only helped, in a perverse way, emboldened the other aspects displayed. Another first viewing, another fine tick in the box of intrigue for this Fungalised pig.

Two more beers needed, a swill of some Barley Water and to the last blast of the night - Chaos 8. Another turn on the twisting table of tonality and another angle thrown in, this time with keyed assistance and an animated front lass who put her arse in gear and gave a sound performance throughout. Sticks came across as efficient and accurate as well a technically tight whilst wirework from both sides concentrated on exactitude rather than exhibitionism. The synthoid shadow that swallowed up any remaining silence helped increase the saturation factor and the result of all this condensed cacophony was that the lead lady could ping and sing with captivating delight and throw out many tuned warbles that completed the whole sonic shebang. I was mightily absorbed and took in the unfolding tonal toxins like the cheap discordant druggie that I am - shoot it up me man, shoot it up! Alas the hit, although high, didn't last and my sonic patience fizzled and my punk attention span felt overwhelmed by the lengthy showcase. Don't get me wrong, the band nailed it and put in a consistent stint but this git would have preferred just a 30-40 minute dose at max rather than the nearly 60 minutes I got. I feel like an ungrateful twat for saying this but honesty dictates and I take the flack as per. Good band though and I shall seek them out again and enjoy the buzz as I do. Next time hopefully I shall be a bit more familiar with the songs.

And home.

There ya go - 3 new bands from STP and thoroughly endorsed by this shroomed sonic specimen (as if that counts for anything). £5 well spent, some good Red Stripe swilled and a few good heads nattered with. Thank you to all and sithee soon fellow fruits!

review by Fungalpunk/OMD (27 February 2017)