… UK82 reloaded: Mess, all the way on Intercity from Guadalajara!

Another great Monday evening at the Hafenklang was waiting for me and me mates, MESS all the way from Guadalajara, Mexico, would be in town. Plenty of folks got attracted by their sound, many where eager to grab their vinyl and one even made the effort to see them in Berlin a day earlier.

Support was local and fitting, the RED⚒BRICKS where providing the warm-up. I have noted their record and i took note of their struggles from the need to replace the singer like the day prior their record release show – but i was yet to see them live.

I guess thanks to them it was already well filled upstairs at the Hafenklang when they kicked off. Their sound is pretty dense, neither fast nor harsh, and they not fall victim of the trap of putting themselves into an obvious Oi! or Skinhead cupboard.

RED⚒BRICKS (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 14.11.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

Controlled speed, loads of melodies and as an asset a pretty decent signature bass play, sometime carrying the songs that bit further that makes it worthwhile to listen. I am not sure if the singer resp. the vocals is a full fit, but that is just me and me mu-sick-al preferences – i would prefer it harsher and a bit more … dangerous maybe? Adventurous?

Good tight set, excellent sound and some applause but actually they did not get people dancing.

With a quick changeover MESS took the stage and took it into a different territory: Much more basic, much more stripped down and – with a positive spin – amateurish. Or simpy: Authentic. Whilst many refer to them as “ah, the Mexican Blitz” i don’t think that default provides them justice.

MESS (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 14.11.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

Sure some of the guitar at moments has that Blitz sound but by and large they are a very basic, very energetic and pretty much non-nonsense band that takes inspiration from UK82 (to use their own reference).

At times they indeed sounded like lads just picking up instruments back in 1982 and screaming it out to friends, at other times they actually proofed that they are close, tight and able to create a sing-a-long wall of sound.

Just like here with “Street Boys”:

A great sing-a-long by the way:

We have been challenged
To hate the whole world
Stand firm, stand proud

We have walked
The streets for hours
Searching for a way out

We are street boys ! X 4

We are different
And we will fight for ours
Struggle while growing old

We are tough guys
And we don't need your lies
Never say why, never say die

We are street boys ! X 4

I liked it, many of me mates liked it (just one found them too lightweight) and the well packed audience at the Hafenklang liked them too, even beyond the novelty bonus of an Oi! Band from Mexico. I would definitely see them again, they are worth it.

Worthy was also the shopping experience, being alerted of low quantities of records already ahead of the show i broke my own rules and purchased the vinyl prior to the band convincing me live. And i was lucky to score all i wanted, including the MESS / The Chisel split EP in colored vinyl. Lucky greedy bastard me!

In case you need it this shit too – which is not only great songs but also great packaging – try local at Sounds Of Subterrania!

Best shopping for a #recordcollectorbeingapretentiousarsehole

It is these shows that actually make my day, specifically when that day was spoiled on the work front. Best club, best booking, best companions (many life long by now) and great new music. Luv it, love you (you know who you are).

PS: Thanks to Beno for the video, i was too busy enjoying the band to shoot one myself.

… Proto-Punk reloaded: Dion Lunadon!

This was indeed a show i was looking for, as i recently did figure out Dion’s solo efforts (2017 to 2022) and found some real gems in there. To most Dion Lunadon seems to be know from his stint in A Place To Bury Strangers, a quite know Noise-Rock band from NYC (and that Noise-Rock linkage fended at least one friend off).

Support was from Hamburg, a band called Billy Zach. Once they entered the stage i thought they got all their friends in the audience, as the ~20 people upstairs at the Hafenklang all chatted with members of the band prior to the show.

Billy Zach (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 09.11.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

They had like zero stage presence, almost shy. Their sound at good moments was like a movie soundtrack, at bad moments over-engineered post-something indie rock. Some of their guitar soundscapes over the very present bass where good, most of the rest was just not my mu-sick-al cupboard. If you like depressive dance music go check them out.

Next Dion Lunadon and they kicked off like this:

And stormed into this next:

Now that had so much more drive and the kick-ass Proto-Punk i was expecting, though the light show, carefully constructed by Dion and run from this mobile made it a very dark and foggy exercise.

I have no clue where his backing band came from, the bass player i believe is from Italy and provided, once some electrical problems where overcome, quite a groovy bass. The guy on guitar looked non-descriptive but was able to push some great power out of his guitar. And the drummer was just perfectly sturdy.

Dion Lunadon (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 09.11.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

All three basically stood back and left Dion both the center of the stage and the attraction. And he lived up to it, dressed for the occasion and playing both with his guitar and his voice (through effects strapped to the mike stand). He was also not shy to put some Rock Show elements in, be it self strangle on a chain or ripping all strings from his guitar on the last song.

I liked it and the approximately 50 folks now in attendance liked it too. But for the quality of both songs, mu-sick and show (sans light and smoke though) it was a way too low turn out. A packed Goldener Salon should have been their fate rather.

As always when a band convinces me live i picked up a record, unfortunately the Double-A-Side single with “Com/Broke” and “1976” from 2016 is no more, but the re-release of the first solo album is an equal good catch.

Good show, though really not enough of the Hamburg lot present.

PS: Also their videos are worth it if you ask me, here are me favorite songs #1 and #2 (and the double A-Side single from 2016 in all glory)

#1

#2

… a triumphant return: Kaleko Urdangak ruled again!

Ever since Kaleko Urdangak stunned the hell out of the folks attending MOi!n It’s Hamburg #4 in 2019 i was looking forward to see them again in Hamburg. Finally in 2022 the Monkeys was able to put them back onto the stage, making me and a few others really happy people. Really happy!

Support was from the Suede Razors, hard hitting Bovver Rock from sunny California. And they are known too, be it for their series of cool 7″ vinyl or be it for playing in Bands like Harrington Saints, Ultra Sect or others.

Suede Razors (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 30.10.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

The start of their set was hampered with sound problems, a lot of eye contact across the stage like “i can’t hear your guitar/bass/vocals over here“, diminishing the value of the songs quite visibly. Once that got a proper resolution they took sail for real.

Unlike many others in the genre they have carved a unique niche: It is more hard and driving rock, it has less of an sing-a-long overcast. That said, as a team they deliver that very well and without too much fuzz: They like their things basic and real.

Suede Razors (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 30.10.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

The longer it went, the better it was i have to admit. So kudos to them for being able to turn a frustration into a solid delivery. And for all record collectors: Remember to hunt their 7″ output, it is worth it!

Without too much changeover Kaleko Urdangak from the equally sunny Basque Country took the stage and they promised the audience this set:

Kaleko Urdangak – Set List (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 30.10.2022)

And how did they kick off? They kicked off 45 Minutes of Skinhead Rock’n’Roll like this:

Intro, First song – BANG, back with a solid banger, much to the joy of the audience!

Luckily all sound issues had been fixed during the Suede Razors set so from the first chord it was all there:

Aggressive, direct, charming, multi-vocal choruses and action on stage by the whirlwind of a singer.

Kaleko Urdangak (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 30.10.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

From where i stand there is no better package currently around and it frustrates the hell out of me that a) the show was not sold out and b) the average age of the attendees was … more in the high than at youth level. This is the energy that should drive youth forward, this is the energy that should send you fist flying and give you a sore throat from singing along.

In that context it quite funny how good they are: Though they sing in their local language that most of us can not get at all they are able to trigger this sing-a-long reflex. Luckily with the new record they hand out a multi-lingual lyrics sheet, i am keen to see if indeed they sing about slaughtering unicorns as i guessed or something more meaningful.

Kaleko Urdangak (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 30.10.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

It was high speed and high value throughout the set, loads of smiling folks in the audience, some dancing but almost everybody having a great time. Compared to last time there was a bit more interaction with the audience but still to a certain extend with a bit of language barrier.

Kaleko Urdangak sure like what they do, seeing all 4 on stage not only mastering their instrument but also to get consistency into their songs and delivery is just joyful to watch. And it is not like a party band – it is for real: Energy, Drive, Charm packed with the ability to write great songs.

Kaleko Urdangak (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 30.10.2022 (c) gehkacken.de 2022)

I bet you they convinced even more people than in 2019 (as there where more – but not enough – in front of the stage) and i do hope they remain on a return path to Hamburg forever. I was yet again convinced and as always if a band is able to convince me playing live i score a record.

#recordcollectorsarepretentiousarseholes – limited edition in purple with gate fold cover including poster, multilingual lyrics sheet, postcard & badge – a worthy package to take home!

And whilst i stayed off booze during the show i sat down with mates after it, having a proper drink and playing some level limbo (i spare you the details). Chatting to members of both Suede Razors and Kaleko Urdangak whilst at it only ever cemented the good feeling towards the night: Perfect evening in perfect companionship, listening to great music and being entertained by great performers (at a location of choice).

Life is good, we must enjoy it!