… back home, double count: Sold out Hafenklang welcomes Subhumans.

Finally – next to Knust, Molotow, MS Hedi and Monkeys also the Hafenklang is back with live shows. As much as all the other clubs they have adopted what in Hamburg is dubbed 2G (proven recovered and proven vaccinated people only – audience, staff and bands) which would allow Clubs to run events unconstrained (capacity, no masks), only requiring contact tracing.

The Hafenklang took a cautious route, not filling capacity at full. As such the show was sold out with 150 folks, where this pre-Covid would have been around 200. Actually it was no surprise that it was sold out, as with the Subhumans coming over from the UK the show had a near perfect headliner and they enjoy loads of credits in Hamburg.

Support was local, Crackmeier took the challenge and the pairing with Subhumans indeed was a fit for the evening. They are not really my deal, in good moments their twin guitar, driving bass and pounding drums made almost a solid wall pushing forward but more often to it was rather on the brink of sounding metal like.

Crackmeier (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 29.10.2021 (c) gehkacken.de 2021)

Their singer choose to roam in front of the stage and he also choose to hand out insults towards the audience, not sure if that one was for real or just as part of the show. As the did have some fans in the audience their rather full set got a share of applause and audience reception. And that is how it should be, even if it does not make click with myself.

Next on Dick Lucas and the Subhumans, who have been around all the time since 1980 with some hiatus in between. And they are also the same faces since all the years which i find particularly enjoyable.

They had actually finished a new record when the pandemic did strike in 2019, now it is 2021 and they are taking that record on the road (and hopefully sell loads). Unpretentious as ever they took the stage and they took the Hafenklang by storm.

What did strike me most was that they actually attracted a rather young crowd and that the dancing area in front of the stage was almost exclusively young and female. And hell yeah, that is how it should be!

Subhumans (Hafenklang, Hamburg, 29.10.2021 (c) gehkacken.de 2021)

I have to admit that i have zero vinyl in my collection from the Subhumans (though plenty from the Canadian Subhumans) but still recognize their sound, which over the years they have almost perfected: It ain’t full of Anarcho-Noise, it always had a deep grounding in the mu-sick-al capabilities of the band and decent song structures.

A neat wall of sound leaving enough space for Dick to get his voice and his excellent lyrics across. In that context i was more than surprised that plenty of the audience was able to sing-a-long, even the younger ones. As said, they have a lot of credits over here.

What did not get resolved was the itch around the question when i saw them first: My fading memory puts that 1983 and towards JUZ Korachstraße but plenty of me mates pointed out that is a wrong setting. It is really a personal letdown of my humble self that i never kept an accurate tally of whom i saw when and where…

The Subhumans came back for some encore and provide a nice add one: A Happy Birthday redemption for Jock McCurdy of the (English, not German) A-Heads. Here we go:

Perfect! A great Friday night back at the Hafenklang, chats and drinks with friends and all of that in safe and almost back-to-normal setting. I am ready for more and i continue to struggle with those who call that setting “inhuman”, “not inclusive” and “un-punk”.

Sorry, somehow your radar got offset during the pandemic.

… 25 years! Thanks Hafenklang!

It is indeed a pity: Covid-19 and the rules that need to go with it have blown a big hole into me loveliest clubs intention to throw a summer of love. A summer of events across all the facets of the Hafenklang. So they have taken shelter elsewhere, where due to location (outdoor, namely) a higher amount of people can attend. Great solidarity between the clubs in demanding times.

Less solidarity came from the weather that Friday (pissing galore) and from concert goers: I guess not more than say 75 folks attended and a too large contingent (to my liking) decided to watch from the outside, by the looks largely people who supported the support from Berlin.

That support was named Trainingseineit Katzenkotze (Training Unit Cat Vomit if that works) claim the following:

Eine Band wie ein Dosenbier: harte Schale, spritziger Kern, schal im Abgang. Zwischen Jugendtraum und alltäglichen Kämpfen gegen Kapitalismus, Patriarchat und all die anderen Arschlöcher suchen wir uns die Nischen, aus denen wir unsere Punkrockkracher ins Herz der Bestie abfeuern. 
Wir sind keine echten Punks und keine originalen Queers, wir sind Pseudos und Kopien. Wir nehmen uns nicht ernst, wir nehmen euch nicht ernst, aber es ist uns verdammt ernst. Punkrock at its best!
Trainingseinheit Katzenkotze (Knust, Hamburg, 09.07.2021)

They looked like fallen out of time (or a different space/time continuum) and they sounded even more so: Humpta-Punk that last time plagued my mu-sick-al liking back in the 80s paired with bad cover jobs. I did not take a liking, many around me did not take a liking but some fans from Berlin in the audience did, also the younger ones outside the fence of the Lattenplatz.

Not my thingy at all. If it is yours, enjoy it!

Next on Es War Mord and the sound turned around that harsh that i was looking for Doctor Emmett Brown, as he must have turned the dial on the trusted DeLorrean. California, anytime post 1981 it must have been. Some people claim they take a deep dive into Depro-Punk (a mu-sick-al cupboard i do not understand) i feel completely on the contrary: What they gave was a perfect set of almost sunny California Hardcore with a small scent of flirting guitar on top, just very very short of fully embracing a surf overcast.

And frank, i would love they attempt that stunt, i think their guitar on the left will master that one easily.

Es War Mord (Knust, Hamburg, 09.07.2021)

Boy do they sound good now! To my ears an absolute perfect set in a non-perfect setting. I think i pestered Fab from the Hafenklang twice to pair them with the Adolescents next year. It would be a match from heaven!

Also i would love to see Gregor from Sounds of Subterrania putting out that sound as a next vinyl in the same near perfect packaging as the other records. In short: Currently i am sold on them. Why? Listen for yerself:

Great stuff, though the enjoyment was short (show was supposed to end at 20:00) and was impacted by the piss-poor weather. What also was apparent was that their music would work so much better in a packed Hafenklang, but that’s the one item we won’t get soon – at least nor before we have assurance how that ugly 4th wave now unfolds.

The Hafenklang also took the 25th anniversary opportunity to issue a small Fanzine, looking at both history (below) and some fun facts around what they do, how they are integrated into the community and what you can expect of them (a lot, actually).

Thank you Hafenklang!

I am ready to get my 2022 season ticket, unconstrained.

Just bring it on!