Tag Archives: Punk

The Best

Simon the singer with Sarf London punk band Five O also put in some poetry gigs. This is from 1981.

The Best

We were the best
And all we cared about
Was being mates
We’d help each other out
We’d show ’em all
That without a doubt
We were the best
We were something to shout about

I cut my hand
And he did too
We mixed our blood
And we were gonna prove
That we were close
And it would always be
That I’d look after him
And he’d take care of me

I got beat up
But I was not alone
Cos he was there
And fought ’em on his own
He got hurt bad
I had to take him home
We bled together
We never bled alone

I used to whistle
He’d always be there
“Yeah, I’m in trouble”
He didn’t seem to care
I’d help him too
Cos that was only fair
We did it all
We did it as a pair

Then you two met
And he wanted you
You hated me
And I hated you too
You took my mate
And you tried to prove
That you were close
And that your love was true

One day I whistled
And I couldn’t understand
Why he didn’t come
Just like we planned
I got it bad
I got kicked to the ground
I thought of those cuts
We’d made in our hands

Si of Five O
fans

Wavis O’Shave, Spizz, Headline

Wavis O’Shave gigging with punk legend Spizz and one of the toughest of the ska revival bands; Headline, reviewed in the Record Mirror, 5 April, 1980.
Michael Riley who’d previously been in Steel Pulse was Headline’s singer. They were one hell of a live band.

Wavis O’Shave, Atheltico Spizz 80, Headline

Wavis O’Shave seems intent on joining the select ranks, featuring such entities as Bianca and Britt, of those who do very little asw loudly as possible.
The unrequited lover of Anna Ford made his world debut with The Hooters complete with his, by now, world renowned two-foot false nose.
His sound was suprisingly American, with reference points stemming from Zappa, beach party movie soundtracks abd garage bands of the psychedelia age. But the whole concoction was brought down to earth by his South Shields accented monologues on his various preoccupations with shoes and the famous ITN newscaster.
Like most one joke gimmicks Wavis managed to raise the odd chuckle, particularly after announcing to the bondage panted hoards a song about the death of Sid – and continued to sing an elegy to Sid James. he managed to avoid wearing the joke thin by keeping his set short.
I suppose some are born stars, some seek stardom and some have stardom thrust upon them and Wavis is doing his best to sew up all three options.
I’ve never been able to make up my mind whether to loath or admire Spizz ever since I first saw him support ad act as a decoy phlegm target for Siouxsie and the Banshees in his Spizz Oil incarnation with Pete Petrol. Athletico Spizz 80 still inspire the same feelings of intense hatred to admiration and affectio ad everythig in between.
The music is impossible to pigeonhole being in the main fractured and frenetic. Dirges, frantic bursts of time changes, manic dischords and flecks of melody all merge, confuse and disorintate. I still can’t make up my mind but I’d go again if only for the unbelievably accessible ‘Where’s Captain Kirk?’
Everything that could go wrong did go wrong with Headlines set, from instrumetal breakdown to a 10 minute break for a power failure. But despite the gremlins the six piece band performed a set that was as powerful and enjoyable as anythig I’ve seen this year.
They walked on stage a la Madness LP sleeve, five black and scalped and one white and slicked and grunted “Don’t knock the baldheads.”
They proceeded to play ska with a diamond edge that was as hard and vicious as it beautiful. But these are no more revivalists or pop poseurs. The sound has the usual elements of bluebeat but give a tinge of disco, an almost heavy metal deployment of power and a fierce commitment to their performance.
To quote their song ‘Rudie Don’t Fear’ they are “Tougher than tough, rougher than rough” and a hell of a lot of fun into the bargain. Catch them quicker than your next breath.

Mike Gardner

What’s A Review Worth?

One of the entertaining things about trawling through old music newspapers is clocking the reviews and seeing how off they so often are. Yep, that’s what reviews are worth – nothing. All too often the record they’ve sneered at goes on to become a classic of the time. These reviews from the NME, 11 March, 1978 include Werewolves Of London, Piss Factory and GLC getting snarked, each of ’em now much loved and thought of as amongst the best records of the time.
The reviewer is Monty Smith.

Patti Smith
Hey Joe (Version) (Sire)

Warpo Patti’s ‘version’ of “Hey Joe” seems to be about Patty Hearst spreading for a well-hung black revolutionary. Not too many laughs here, despite Tom Verlaine being on lead guitar. Seventy-three minutes of “Piss Factory” on the flip which we all love, or not. A grand, sweeping social commentary in the finest Zola tradition, in which all the characters wind up pregnant and get run over by a bus in the end.

Warren Zevon
Werewolves Of London Asylum (Asylum)

A jolly nonsense piece which appears to concern Chinese takeaways and those mutilation murders so popular amongst young californians. Nicely played, of course, but the sum total adds up to sweet FA. Nick Kent reckons the flip (“Tenderness On The Block”) but it all sounds the same to me – dead naff.

Johnny Paycheck
Take This Job And Shove It (Epic)

Hard ass country, well produced by Billy Sherrill, and a great shame that it doesn’t quite live up to that great title.

Menace
G.L.C. (Small Wonder)

“You hate it and the kids in the shop love it,” says Pete in his scribbled note from Small Wonder. I don’t hate it, I just think it’s funny: good ol’ headbanging-on-low-ceilings punk, the chorus (“GLC, GLC, GLC – you’re full of shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit, shit” delivered so fast that the object of their ire comes across as Chelsea. Wotch it dahn the Shed, lads. If they’re serious, then this is a joke – but if it’s a parody, it’s brilliant, down to the rhyming of magistrate with masturbate and the ‘Fuk Orf The World’ etched next to the matrix number. Now look, let’s not get high-handed about this but so long as the Labour Party are in power then I don’t worry overmuch about petty bureaucrats in regional government. And if, as seems likely the Blue Rinsed Iron Maiden does emerge as a serious contender for Downing St, then I’ll leave it to the deeply felt chauvinism and influence of the working/unemployed man (remember the three day week?) to sort things out. Are we not men?

Hard Left’s Tim and Donna back from a trip to Small Wonder.