… the invisible naked man appears: It’s Yard Bomb record release party!

The record has been in circulation for a while though the official release was only end of September. As such the record release party was set for 02.10., which meant next day would be a public holiday and thus nobody should have had an excuse for not showing up.

RECORD RELEASE DAY!
RECORD RELEASE DAY!

In the end downstairs at the Hafenklang turned out as a space too large for the party, above beauty was celebrated by less than 100 people i guess, a bit of a downturn.

First on Last Line Of Defense, who jumped in for Suck who could not make it due to their singer being ill. It was an easy and obvious choice, as they share home and people with Yard Bomb.

Last Line Of Defense (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 02.10.2019)

On average i am not a big fan of their songs, too often they sound just odd to my ears without being able to pin-point exactly what offends me. The best moment came at the end when they grabbed a 2nd singer from their circle of friends and gave us what i believe was a great cover version … check it your for yerself:

As ever don’t get offended by my mu-sick-al tastes and receptors, check them out on your own. For me not the best start into the proceedings.

Next on the Razors, who a couple of days ago had just played on the river Elbe on the MS Hedi, now back on-shore and a stone throw away from the Elbe. They had been invited specifically for this occasion by Yard Bomb and sure wanted to give cudos to their great seminal effort of a first record release.

Razors (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 02.10.2019)

For the Razors it was a bit of a 40 year comeback, their first 7″ (out in October 1979) was recorded at the old Hafenklang Studios, right here at this location. Some say it was the first DIY Punk 7″  by a German band – some doubt it. I am not sure about the statement but that does not matter – here is  „Madhouse Meeting“ from their 1982 12″ on Konneckschen.

They had shorted and speeded up their set and almost matched up with the so much younger Hardcore bands. For the encore, as ever „Because you’re young“ they got members of the Hamburg City Punk Rock Singers on stage and gave a nice sing-a-long finish.

Razors with Choir  (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 02.10.2019)

Next stop for the Razors will be „Burn down the Baum 13.0“ on 30.12.2019 at the Knust, with Sixteen Again (finest Buzzcocks covers from Hamburg) and Knock Off (finest Oi! from London).

Then it was time for Yard Bomb and what i thought another speedy run down of their songs (they can play 14 songs in 21 minutes). But this time round it was a bit more mellow, they took more time to … twist again:

For me they are the hottest shit currently, specifically in that little genre of CA Hardcore 1980s build. Perfect speed, great and very capable guitar work, solid back line and a singer so full of energy. Relentless energy.

Yard Bomb  (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 02.10.2019)

For this occasion they even re-worked their hit „Turning up Milhouse“ into a longer version with a a groovy extra minute, see yerself…

They got a good reception but given that it was only like 1/3 packed it was not bodies flying everywhere and people jumping up and down. I guess upstairs that would have been a much easier thing and, in hindsight, a better place for the party.

Yard Bomb  (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 02.10.2019)

They also played some covers as encores and got their old drummer back up for that occasion. And with that encore even the slowest brain would realize where they pull the mu-sick-al ideas from.

Great set to celebrate a great record. Let’s hope they put some touring behind it in order to sell it off quickly. They deserve to be seen so much wider than just Wedel or Hamburg, can someone please put them into a bus to support a larger US band?

The invisible naked man watching Yard Bomb ( pic by Fab)
The invisible naked man watching Yard Bomb ( pic by Fab)

But Yard Bomb did not finish off the party, late in the night we got something extra. Rolf, who has some Finland connections, was to surprise the lot with some Finish Country Death Metal Banjo or whatever mu-sick-al cupboard you would like to pass onto them.

They actually claim: „Dark Bottle is doombilly, psych-country, alt-punk and krautstoner at the same time.“ There you go!

The „crowd“ by now was a mere 30 people but they all enjoyed the surprise of something completely different. Sure it was late and sure the day off next day had lured some folks into booze – and on booze this was indeed a fun thing to watch. And that fun the audience provided back to the stage.

Dark Bottle  (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 02.10.2019)

But Dark Bottle (from sunny Tampereen kaupunki) had a wee bit more: The songs had meanings and besides the uptempo stuff it also has surprisingly good lyrics. Go and check them out, it may be worth it!

Great and late evening, though not really a record release party per se. It missed the feeling of „packed“ and „everybody going nuts“ but as said the Yard Bomb 12″ gets that across for a start. Go and score it! Now!

Bücher, schnell gelesen: Teil 1.416

Mike Nicol - Sleeper (btb, 2019)
Mike Nicol – Sleeper (btb, 2019)

Gelesen: 24.09. – 02.10.2019, netto 497 Seiten

Der dritte Teil der Kapstadt Serie. Im ersten Teil lungerte im Hintergrund die Geschichte der Todesschwadronen im Aprheitregime, im zweiten Teil konnten wir einen durch und durch korrupten Präsidenten erleben und der Abschluss der Trilogie holt jetzt das viel diskutierte und nie ganz aufgeklärte Suid-Afrikanische Atomwaffen bzw. Atomenergie Programme in die Story.

Zuid-Afrika gilt ja als erster (und wohl einziger Staat) der sein Atomwaffenprogramm eingestellt hat. Da vor dem Ende der Apartheit alle Details sorgsam vernichtet wurden und nie jemand ausgepackt hat, bleiben die Details wohl im dunklen. Suid-Afrika hat aber Uran und verarbeitet dieses. Und hat 2005 auch einen Uran-Handel mit dem Iran zumindest für möglich gehalten…

… und in diesen geschichtlichen Hintergrund rutschen Fish Pescado und seine Freundin (und ex-Agentin) Vicki Kahn. Was für Fish mit einem Auftrag für die Suche nach einer verschwundenen Frau beginnt wird schnell für ihn ein Albtraum: Sein bester Freund, ein Polizist der auch am Fall der verschwunden Frau arbeit bringt sich vor seinen Augen um und hinterlässt eine kryptische Nachricht. Die Polizei buchtet ihn ein und hält ihn tagelang fest. Und aus dem Fall der Frau wird ein Mord am Energieminister, eine Uran-Deal mit dem Iran, IS-Terroristen auf der Jagd nach Material für eine schmutzige Bombe und …

… der Auftritt von Mace Bishop aus der „Rache“ Trilogie von Mike Nico. Ein ganz feiner Kniff der mit einem coolen Paukenschlag das Ende einläutet. Ein überraschendes Ende, nonchalant und en passant. Und blutig!

Diesmal sind im Buch weniger direkte politische Andeutungen (außer der ortsüblichen Korruption, dem verschleudern von Staatseigentum an ausländische Firmen bzw. Staatskonzerne zu Gunsten der eigenen Tasche), sondern das ganze kommt fast als Roadmovie daher. Irgendwie undurchsichtig (aber das ist Terrorismus und der Krieg gegen Terrorismus ja per se).

Ein wunderbares Buch!

Soundtrack dazu: Atom Band – Betsy, was sonst?

PS: Der btb Verlag hat mich erhört – das Cover ist mit den englischen Ausgabe … identisch. Merci.

Mike Nicol - Sleeper (Umuzi, 2018)
Mike Nicol – Sleeper (Umuzi, 2018)

 

 

… when surprises get you left field: mOi!n it’s Hamburg 4!

I won’t be repeating that i dislike festivals in principle, as you will get just another praise of two great nights that actually belonged to a festival. Sam and Ralf from the Monkeys did put together another class event …

… the original line up!

… only to suffer from The Kids and Grade 2 having to pull out. Specifically The Kids are a mainstay in Hamburg, as such the loss was rather big. But with Knock Off and Rixe fitting replacements where found and the two days could set sail as per below.

… the final lineup for mOi!n it’s Hamburg, 2019 edition!

Given it was to be four bands on Friday the proceedings started rather early, too early for many that had to either travel or work on day. Snipper 66 from the US of A (and that’s Austin with a little help from Berlin this time round) thus faced a little bit of an empty space in front of the stage.

They not only brand themselves street punk i guess but they also look like it. And they hit hard, actually they have a rhythm section that not only provided that hard drive but also, and that was the best spin, added to the vocals. So with three folks singing (both solo and chorus) they provided some great variation.

Snipper 66 (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 27.09.2019)

Great to see the girl behind the drums: Not only hitting hard but also having fun and being able to emit that from stage. I won’t necessarily buy a record of them but i won’t pass them by, if there is an option to see them life. Great start.

With the 2nd band the visuals slightly changed, it was them unpretentious Lads from London, Fred Perry and Doc Martens and their unpretentious songs about Life (so fucking live it), Love, Footie and Politics. They love to be in Hamburg and Hamburg loves them.

Knock Off (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 27.09.2019)

They noted specifically that they love to play Hamburg for the size of the audience and i immediately wondered if they would know what the invite from the mighty Razoes for „Burn Down The Baum“ at year end would mean for them. They will face an even bigger stage and an even larger audience. And i damn sure then will win over that lot too!

mOi!n it’s Hamburg would be worthwhile event if it would not cultivate surprises and contrasts. But surprise and contrast came and it came with Gatans Lag from sunny Borås (city of the sheepshaggers eeer sheepshearers) and they not only flooded the stage but also had a large contingent in front of the stage.

Gatans Lag (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 27.09.2019)

They kicked off providing their essence: „We are Gatans Lag and we generally dislike people“ and took it from there. Where the singer from Bonecrusher likes to sing in the audience, the singer from Gatans Lag likes to throw himself into people in the audience and yell the words right there into their face. My sideline guess was he was drunk anyway, if not he got it during the set as he had about a beer per song.

… it was much more raunchy in Hamburg!

Sound wise they where great, well oiled, had a sax included and took no prisoners at all. They did not care about the audience they just cared about a force full show and that they delivered. For the encore they added another member and freed up the bass (who sported a great Doberman Cult shirt) and gave a final „in your face“.

Wow – that was an early high!

Headlining for the day was for them lads from Macclessfield, Cheshire, and was a return to Hamburg shores after 24 years (not so tricky, as they where on hiatus from 1996 to 2018): The Macc Lads, self-proclaimed „rudest, crudest, lewdest, drunkest band in Christendom„.

The Macc Lads (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 27.09.2019)

There where some from the Hamburg lot that just wanted nothing else then them, for me it was not really a burner. Their lad humor may work in England (less so abroad) and their silly songs (with a scent of silly humor) are glued into something that for me is just faster paced rock.

I listened, i watched and i gave in on the first doubt in my head. Rather than sustaining, i went home after day 5 songs and decided to catch a long sleep after the work week. Sorry Lads!

Without a doubt day one turned out better than i thought: Great bass/drums pair for a start with Sniper 66, lovely Knock Off and a massive surprise on what Gatans Lag where pushing upon the audience.

On Saturday it started even earlier (and that is me leaving out the reggae boot ride), that suited me anyway as i could take the short bike ride without being showered by the rain that was coming up. And luckily me and me mate where early, as we got to get the biggest surprise of the weekend as a starter.

I have never heard of Kalenko Urdangak, i have no clue what the name means as their local language does not lend itself to easy understanding and thus we had no clue what to expect.

To make it short: They tore down the place, they killed the audience and they left every single member of the audience (less those from Euskal Herria or Catalunya, i guess they knew what was comming) stunned. Perplex. Searching for words.

Kalenko Urdangak (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2019)

And who did it? A thin singer with relentless energy, a full bodied guy with a Cockney Rejects shirt with a perfect harsh and driving guitar sound, a towering bass with perfect backup vocals and the coolest sideburns of the weekend on drums, always smiling away.

… thank god for subtitles!

Say hello to my newest favorite live band. And it was not only me, also all of the Hamburg lot i was checking with had the same feeling of just being exposed to a perfect skinhead rock’n’roll set. The best was that the singer was able to bridge the language barrier in the songs by lots of gestures, so that you halfway could make out what it is about. And even with that barrier it was sing-a-long galore to great songs!

Kalenko Urdangak (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2019)

Nowadays (and with a too large record collection) i live by the rule „only buy a record when the band has convinced you live on stage“ and my praise for Kalenko Urdangak thus ends with the confession that i bought their vinyl. Later at home i realized they have more out, i got to hunt that down too!

They also included Pour La Gloire into the set and got some prominent French contingent with them on stage to sing it. Me mate Thomas, as ever dressed for the occasion, proudly sported his Camera Silens shirt at the front of the stage.

After that killer set someone had the poor task to continue, it was the Warrior Kids, one of the best bands of the massive wave of early 80s French Street Punk. By the looks they arrived late in Hamburg and had to do a sound check right there on stage. As such sound was less then perfect and they where forced to play against an already exhausted audience. After a couple of songs Marc asked in frustration „…are you asleep?“

Warrior Kids (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2019)

Once into the set and adding some ska and reggae themed stuff they got at least some people moving, that part of the set went well. The rest was just the wrong point in time stuff, unlucky them! I do hope they did not drive from windy Marseille all the way for this rather frustrating set. It was not their fault!

With a quick turnover La Inquisicion from Cap i Casal de Catalunya took the stage … and blasted the audience in all forms: Visually, stage performance wise and by their songs. I saw them last year at Barna’n’Roll where they played in the full sun as the first band. Back then my verdict was: „They got some cheers but did not manage to impress me. I guess that stage and that emptiness was just too big for them.

La Inquisicion (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2019)

Boy did this change: Against my memory they have speeded up, tightend up, added a scent of hardcore metal and took it from there (and the by now massive Basque and Catalan contingent in front of the stage by storm). Wow, i felt yet again blasted away.

Thinking about it after the gig i am damn sure that coming from Euskal Herria or Catalunya is something that puts a shitload of energy into you: The need to fight. The urge to fight. The will to stand up. All of that accumulated right here at the Monkeys with both Kaleko Urdangak and La Inqusicion.

Rixe (out of Paris) had to climb that by now larger than life stage next and their attempt to blow it up resulted in beer being spilled into electrics and thus blown fuses forcing power cuts on stage. Not once but twice and that somehow took some of the early energy away.

Rixe (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2019)

Still, their bare bones Oi! sound in it’s simplicity and harshness got the people moving and the longer the set lasted the better they sounded and the more the audience was up for it. I like them and they are of the same type of unpretentiousness as Knock Off. Well done and providing good vibes.

MUSIC IS LIFE. THAT’S WHY OUR HEARTS HAVE BEATS.
#HOMEISWHERETHEMUSICIS #HOMEISWHERETHEBOOZEIS
#HOMEISWHEREMEMATESARE

I by now was almost exhausted and thought about leaving, i could not think of this Upstarts version, with Mensi back from retirement, will do the trick. But given uplifting performances already seen, given the amount of friends met, chatted with and given the booze already taken i stayed on. It was both a worthy decision and one that would have a knock-on …

I think i have all their vinyl up until say 1987 and Sham, Cockney and the Upstarts where key bands for my early life in punk. But then i disbanded them somehow, some efforts where lackluster and some line-ups not fit for purpose. Here and now on the small stage they where greeted with cheers and as the first thing stormed into „2.000.000 Voices“ and had the audience sing-a-long from 0 to 100 in one go.

Angelic Upstarts (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2019)

I got carried away in sing-a-long too, though my rationale inner self kept trying to remind me that it was a speeded up version of the Upstarts with Mensi (in Celtic outfit) giving an almost spoken word performance on top. It is clear that age and size disallow him to move at the same pace, so the best moments (at least for me) where stuff like „Solidarity“.

At the end i have to confess that they converted me from „doubtful“ to „accepted“, though i still won’t add any new vinyl of them to my collection. But as a highlight to finish of mOi!n it’s Hamburg #4 it worked perfectly well.

On that high and with some surprise mates joining the proceedings late (after missing out all other bands on Saturday) i should have resorted home but somehow got stuck in the pub, chatting, praising and drinking. And one more. And a free Helbing from Sam. And another chat.

In a nutshell it was late, later and … hungover on Sunday. Well done. I should have been up and to the Millerntor on Sunday but the bad weather and too much booze mixed with people smoking forced me towards the easy way out: I watched St. Pauli kill Sandhausen from the Sofa.

Big time thanks for Sam & Ralf and the Monkeys crew for pulling this off and big time FANX for all the mu-sick-al surprises (i got to name Gatans Lag and Kaleko Urdangak again here). It was two worthwhile nights that some people would call a festival. I call it two class shows!

nb: If you belong to the doubtful caste too then pen 02nd to 4th of October 2020 into your diary and give it a try at mOi!n it’s Hamburg, 5th edition!