Tag Archives: Joolz

Tension

1982 live review of bands on the vague side of anarcho-punk (that’s a good thing!) and Joolz from Ability Stinks, number 6.

Poison Girls/Rubella Ballet/Jools/Sane But Not Heard
Drill Hall Oct 82
£2/£1.50 w UB40

I entered the bar as I arrived, to find a surprisingly varied audience awaiting entertainment. There were still a lot of ‘hard cores’ there but they certainly didn’t have a monopoly tonight. This gig turned out to very very productive as far as selling zines went – a nice reflection.
SANE BUT NOT HEARD, I’m afraid, turned out to be aptly named. They were heard but not seen (same?) by me as I was too busy still selling zines. A female poet, who I assumed to be JOOLS then took the stage. A very art collegy look was verbally denied, but she can’t deny the Bauhaus-audience-type stare she gave me earlier in the bar. Have I got 2 heads or summat? From behind/amidst her pink hair poems were spat out with cynical venom. Maybe trying for a confrontation? No humour here, which made the taste a little bitter for me. Exit stage right.
RUBELLA BALLET struck gold in this boys heart. Lots of other colours too, though the outfits looked a little superfluous. The sounds emitted were sharp, bouncy and non-plodders. I’m not familiar with the song titles, but ‘Ballet Dance’ was good. Female vocalist Zillah (?) has a good voice and guitarist Pete Fender made a nice change when he sang. There’s some potential in this band. The audience liked them – I will too when I’m convinced of what they are…..Dirt meet the Rezillos?
The sight of POISON GIRLS on stage is challenging. An obvious wide range of ages, and brillaint defiance of age-old myths and standards. The lyrics are beautiful, and when they get left in the mix, it’s a disgrace, not just a shame. This band should be important – I just wish they excited me a bit more. Like the Clash. ‘Old Tart’ and ‘Tension’ are still brilliant. New songs seem just as good – ‘Soft Touch’ is especially striking.
The crowd reaction only seemed so-so, which I didn’t expect. Last song and ‘Persons Unknown’ is superb. A good set from a good band. I think they should play to schoolchildren, middle-aged housewives, macho men etc etc.
As I go back home, I look at people in the street and think if only they’d been there, they might have thought….