Call me Russ L

Punk punk punk get outta my way

Posted in Music by Russ L on 8 January, 2006

Originaly posted on 12/11/5.

Two gigs of the punk persuasion. Well, everyone has their own definition of what punk means I suppose, but both of these will do for me in one way or another.

The Subhumans played at Eddies on Wednesday the 2nd of November. This is the first time I’ve actually been to Eduardosia since March, and hence the first time I’ve seen this particular venue with barriers in front of the stage. What in the world are they in aid of? Rejoice, bands, for you will never again fall pray to a punter pointing behind you and exclaiming “Look, it’s The Goodyear Blimp!” before stepping on stage and slipping your bass cab into his jacket pocket while you all turn around.

I missed the first two bands but got there in time for Antibodies. The sound for them was very definitely on the rough side, but they didn’t seem too fussed themselves. They played fairly traditional punk rock, Pistols-ish with perhaps a splosh of this evening’s headliners chucked in too, with the odd bit of darker/moodier-sounding guitar here and there. None of their songs especially stood out on first listen but they made for a reasonable way to pass the time.

You’re all gonna diiiiiiiiiieeeeeeeee! Ahem. Sorry. Subhumans have never quite been as famous-at-large as their contemporaries Crass and Conflict, but tasteful sorts such as I (shut up) know what’s what. They’re the band I like by far the most of the three, in fact, although there’s no particular reason why we should place them in direct competition. I suppose it’s a question of genius revealing itself through creative tension-against-established form ala Beethoven, although in this case the form is traditional punk. Or is that just me being a massive wanker? Dunno. Sudden improvements occurred in the sonic quality, anyway, giving us a crystal-clear sound. Dick Lucas is an engaging frontman, and they have tremendous actual songs for everyone to shout along too. I don’t know if they were quite as fun as when I saw them at The Foundry, but since that was seven years ago I have no idea really.

On Friday the fourth it was over to The Academy for Flogging Molly (weeeelll… they were the band I was there to see, although Millencolin were the actual headliners). I didn’t arrive at the Aca till Flogging Molly had already begun (although I’m told that “Screaming At The Wailing Wall” was their first song so I basically missed about a minute of their set). At the time I was quite ticked off. After having had to spend over half an hour waiting for a bus not once but twice that day, I was originally going to have a bit of a rant here. At the time of writing I just don’t have the energy.

Should you ever feel the same then go and see Flogging Molly – they’ll sort that out for you, though. They’re wonderful on so many different levels – their almost tangible energy, the interesting folky instrumentation, the great lyrics, and most importantly the amazing songs. It’s also ace to see a massive crowd of people instinctively fall into ‘Riverdance’ mode. Both live and on record they’re a band with so many great tunes that it becomes difficult to pick highlights – the aforementioned “Screaming At The Wailing Wall,” “Tobacco Island,” “Seven Deadly Sins”… ah, you name it, it was fantastic.

I ended up leaving halfway through Millencolin’s set. After Flogging Molly they sounded very flat and one-dimensional indeed. I’d heard a couple of songs by them a long while back, but they were more or less new to me at this gig, and they didn’t seem to have any instantly appealing songs amongst their bog-standard skate-punk business. Having to play after Flogging Molly would be a bad situation for most bands, though, so maybe in other circumstances they might have made more of an impression. Who can say?

~ Russ L

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