… MOi!n, it’s hangover again: Part 3 of that little gem with some nice surprises!

It was that time of the year again: End of September, end of a lovely summer, and thus time again for mOi!n it’s Hamburg. A little gem in that little gem out in the danish part of Hamburg, two nights full of sing-a-long street punk and dance-a-long ska and reggae.

Day One had the tighter rooster and in hindsight that four band mix worked smarter than the full-on six band assault on Saturday (as Day Two lacked some of the relaxed Ska/Reggae sounds).

Kick-off was with Trench, a secret love of mine since their debut at the Monkeys earlier this year. We are still waiting for their debut EP (now slanted for December release) but in the meanwhile they continue to be a worthwhile enjoyment.

Trench (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

They are tight, hard, well paced and aggressive. All you actually need in that little cupboard labled „Streetpunk“.

The studio outtakes for said EP should actually water yer mouth or make yer ears eager to hear more. I’d love to see them more often in Hamburg, let’s hope that the good people running that great little venture will book them more often for support.

With a swift changeover the style also changed – The Hacklers from sunny Ireland took the stage with everything to put a dance party on: 6 lads inclusive of keyboards and sax. And for sure that’ll be Ska and Reggae and it was provided in the best possible way.

The Hacklers (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Where Trench had some people dancing, The Hacklers now had everyone in front of the stage moving. That’s indeed the distinct advantage of that different cupboard: It lends itself so much easier to both the female and the male contingent enjoying body movements (and you can’t stop yer feet mate, you can’t stop ‚em).

Out on the Streets“ – a real gem of a hit! If you need a bit of party sounds and keep the people dancing – go and score their debut LP, it’s a worthy catch!

Next on the Arch Rivals and they were greeted by the lot with loads of cheers – they had conquered the Monkeys before and they speeded up the the proceedings a wee bit: Their little cupboard is working class Oi! and they command the proceedings both with their sound and through Mike, who mans the ramp.

Their game plan was like this:

Arch Rivals - Setlist (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)
Arch Rivals – Setlist (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Full frontal from the start they scored goal after goal and won over the crowd (that actually did not want anything else than to be won over). And tongue in check they finally gave way to their own sing-a-long ode (to them fucking self).

I bet you i was not the only one who did continue the sing-a-long when strolling home in the we of the night with a bit of slippery feet (due to too much beer). Great, just perfect. All people ever need to get out of their mind!

Arch Rivals (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

And at the end they put a final mark with a sing-a-long on loan from that other band that just played over here and all of the crowd did sing-a-long with loads of energy and loads of enthusiasm.

Arch Rivals? Bring ‚em on, anytime.

On that high it was hard to keep the momentum but Berlin’s one and only Party Machine was the very right choice to finish up the already all sweaty party crowd. After some hickup with the keyboards (a broken cable finally was identified as the culprit and eliminated from the proceedings) there was no stopping to and endless hit party.

Arthur and The Spooners (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 28.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Yet again it was the Monster Sound of Ska that made lame dance again and mute sing again. It most likely made blind hear again but Arthur ain’t no Jesus – he rather wants to be a Saturday Hero:

Bang! Boom! Done. All sweaty the crowd just gave in and danced the night away. It could have been endless but at the end everybody was done: On stage, off stage – just done.

Me myself and I where done too, to much of the black gold made it’s way into the pint and into me humble self. But that is the way it should be and that Friday mix of bands and style was just puuurfect.

Perfect Mix: Beer and live Punk fucking Rock!
Perfect Mix: Beer and live Punk fucking Rock!

Thus that picture had it all: Hamburg – Punk Rock City, with a beer and a stage and some choice live music. It can’t be better mate, it can’t be better.

With a neat hangover it joined the 2nd day, with 6 bands in front of me. Faces in the club slightly changed compared to Friday and some even did join the DJ Tour through the harbor. For me that would have been too much, i am to old for that shit and me body needs a good rest after a hangover.

Very early Ultra Razzia from Montreal had to take the stage, i think half of the club was still empty. As they – at least for me – turned out as a great surprise i was happy that i made it in time.

Ultra Razzia (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 29.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Just another cupboard was opened here, Oi! with a deep root in Punk i’d say. For me just perfect French Punk Rock and as ever with a problem of language as i don’t speak a single word of French.

Wow – for me the biggest surprise on both days. Very much to my liking and very much in sync with some of my favorite stuff. Please check them out, they have a neat demo for free!

Whilst Ultra Razzia where a surprise the next cupboard to be opened was a surprise by the sheer label tucked upon it: To me plain hardcore! And it was Concrete Elite from Austin with some self proclaimed Brick Wall Music.

Concrete Elite (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 29.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Very fast, very hard and the singer roaming like a H/C kid. Left, right, left, right and in between growls of anger and hate (as much as i could make out). They sounded like this:

A wee bit left field for this event but as ever there is nothing bad in stretching mu-sick-al boundaries. One thing is for sure though – they will not be voted as crowd favorites, i guess they even where too offensive for some.

What was great though was to see and hear that lead guitar (back there in the white shirt): He did hide away and did little moves but i bet ya he writes all the songs and his great guitar play carries all the songs!

Luckily next on some more mellow sounds, Bromure from Paris with some known faces. Their sound was clearly and deeply rooted in 80s French Punk and the addition of the sax makes it indeed special.

Bromure (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 29.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

They had more people in front of the stage and they had people dancing (no wonder vs. the break neck speed of Concrete Elite). I am not to sure with the sound though, to my ears that one did not sound as perfect and something felt lost in the mix (at least for my ears).

I dig them and i dig them specifically because they are different (and somehow are like having been fallen out of time). Class effort!

Where all the changeovers on stage earlier had been rather quick it took Menace a wee bit more time to be ready. That provided at least me and some around me with some frustration and that frustration did grow when they started.

Menace (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 29.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

From crowd reaction they seemed to have a top status, both the Oi! faction and the Blackpool Pilgrims had them down as great. I did see them a couple of times in the last 10 years and i have to admit i was never satisfied live.

This time round it was drawn into two directions: Once they where together on stage and sounded ok i realized that they have taken on power and speed and actually sounded very modern and up-to-date. On the other hand i did miss the bare Menace sound of all their early output and thus could not really enjoy the old favorites in the new sound.

But i was pretty much alone with that feel – around me a lot of happy people where singing and dancing and thus Menace did everything right (and i guess for once i was wrong). But that it how it is: For every band you have a sound in your brain and it is difficult to adjust your bearings.

Many people took it as the perfect set, i took it with some reservation though i guess the crowd can’t be wrong.

Next Bad Co. Project, forever with the burden of eg. „…from the ashes of Oxymoron„.  Just like Menace it took them a wee bit to be ready but then they took the audience, with plenty of folks from Berlin, by storm.

BAd Co. Project (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 29.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

It’s not that i don’t like them but it is just that their mu-sick just does not resonate with me. Nothing wrong with that, it resonated with many people in the crowd and as such they seemed to have delivered what the crowd waited for (and i think it was the first ever time they graced Hamburg, so the crowd did wait for some time). Bonus: Their bass player, centered on the stage, did seem to smile through all songs and choruses – so it looked like they had fun.

Finally and quite late Gimp Fist and thus the perfect encore for the two days event. Straight on Punk Rock with some scents of early Newtown Neurotics (at least for my ears) and an ever friendly (off and on stage) Jonny Robson.

They have nothing fancy and that makes them so special. They did not even need a long setup, a few twangs and a nodding „that’ll be alright„. Menace were the loud crowd favorites – Gimp Fist were the silent majority i guess. Yet again they bring it all together and match up many sides: Be it the Blackpool Pilgrim, be it the Cock Sparrer Maniac or be it the Football, Skinhead Punk’n’Roll Fan.

Gimp Fist (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 29.09.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

They hail from the North East, from the lovely county of Durham and as lovely as the area they are themselves. And they sure know about footie:

Perfect closure of the night i’d say. And a lot of happy faces in the audience (and one big fan almost in tears – you know who you are mate!).

Perfect two day, as said with the first day sporting a perfect setting and great variety and the 2nd day a wee bit too long (for me and me hangover). And on the next day i realized that my two days ticket had a magic number that was to help the magical FCSP through the local derby (which i skipped, for many reasons).

1(83)910 - a magic number for free!
1(83)910 – a magic number for free!

Thanks to all bands and fans and deep thanks to the good folks at the Monkeys for making this happen and providing a shelter for this type of Music. Your endeavors are duly noted and at least i keep you in my morning prayers!

Looking forward to mOi!n it’s Hamburg #4 in 2019!

… when you get surprised twice then it was a good show indeed: Pre-Easter Oi! for the bunnies!

Thanks good it is Easter break! My next break away from work is only end of May, so the 4 days off feel like short holiday. As such the Monkeys was the perfect place for sliding into these days with a great package of bands.

First on the Arch Rivals from sunny Plymouth (that one on the south coast of that island that soon seems to drift off that continent of ours) and they took me by surprise. Not so much from a musical perspective, as they are a package with an „to be expected“ sound.

Arch Rivals (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg) (c) gehkacken.de)

What took me almost left field was their shouter, boy what a great shouter (despite having worn out his vocal cords during the week already) – he was not only providing some choice words between songs (that actually had a meaning) but also their songs where with great lyrics. I’d say great band and i am looking forward to see  them again – i am now on me toes for it!

Next Legion 76 from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia in the US of A. Their name sure is a nod to the Philly history and the fact that in 1776 the declaration of independence for the US of A splitting away from that island now drifting away from … never mind – they come from a town actually smaller than Hamburg (ok, about the size off by inhabitants) and also neat on the banks of a river (Delware River instead of River Elbe) and they look like this…

Legion 76 (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg) (c) gehkacken.de)

Where Arch Rivals had the word, Legion 76 had the (wall of sound) music. They caught my eye with their 2014 demo (later released as an EP) but have improved their sound considerably. Less guitar leads but really driving wall of sound, pushing the songs forward and paired with raw vocals (and harmonic background vocals). See yerself with „Into Darkness“:

And the word to it go like this:

It’s all across the their minds,
you know they’ve seen it on TV 
Blinds pulled across their eyes, 
they can’t decipher what they see 
Sense made from laying down 
with thoughts they can’t dispel 
Bought into hate again, 
I can’t believe the shit they sell 
Sold out, cashed in, 
chalk it up to apathy 
Time to find a higher ground, 
a place for you and me 

Into darkness we fall, watch the world go up in flames 
Into darkness we live, we can’t see the light of day 
Into darkness we watch cultures fall in despair 
Into darkness we breathe, waiting for a cleaner air 

It’s got the best of them, 
diseased views are all I see 
Suffering from helplessness 
and a mind that can’t be free 
What stops the rest of us 
from being one drop in the well 
Shadows reveal themselves, 
we know time will always tell 
Stand up, 
strike down anything that you can see 
Drive the demons out, 
cast them to obscurity

That is actually pretty good stuff and i did like them live as much as i savoured their records. On the fun side (greedy me) they where all also sizeable and that felt so american somehow (foregive me lads). Great band, great music.

And that gave way for Booze & Glory from London, who sure where the reason why the Monkeys put up a „SOLD OUT“ sign weeks ahead of the show. They are reasonable big nowadays and have played everywhere in the world with great success.

It took them some time to set up and get the music man to tune the monitors to their liking, sometimes their requests to change the vocals or the volume in the monitors felt like a running gag, at least off stage (maybe it was quite odd on stage).

Booze & Glory (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg) (c) gehkacken.de)

Their sound is polished by now and they have developed since their early days in 2009 into loads of melody and technical capabilities paired with great sing-a-long stuff. But within that, they also have almost mellow gems like „Simple“ from their newest record:

Great stuff. What i did like too was the Hardcore Help T-Shirt their singer did wear, as this is also a charity i support on a regular basis with some of me dough. And they made their stance clear, even for the dumbest: „Booze & Glory was, is and always will be an Anti-Fascist band“. Well said lads, well said. In the wake of that only few noticed that a member of the audience was evicted from the premises as he sported a shirt from a more than dubious band.

And that got us to the end, more sing-a-long hits and an encore to the encore, thanking Arch Rivals, Legion 76, Sam and … FCSP. Cheap trick to lure the already completely enthusiastic audience into more sing-a-long:

Where the Arch Rivals had the words, Legion 76 had the music it was sure Booze & Glory who had the audience – singing, dancing and packing the space in front of the stage. That was just sheer good fun in a great club (and loads of booze, ok, i give you that).

Booze & Glory - Audience (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 13.04.2017 (c) gehkacken.de)
Booze & Glory – Audience (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 13.04.2017 (c) gehkacken.de)

And what did it proof? It did proof that music is to be listened too – both on record but also you need to ensure that you verify that the band actually works on a stage too – all three of them too, specifically in a great club like the Monkeys.

And the best? No alarm clock on Friday! Happy Easter bunnies!