… don’t get lost on New Years Eve – get wasted the day before!

Against all odds two years in a row we stayed in Hamburg over Christmas and New Year and as such the traditional Burn down The Baum showcase of the Razors was the best possible occasion to finish off the mu-sick-al year early and with friends from near and far. And far this year stretched from Calgary to Perth, so basically the Razors where able to lure the globe to Hamburg – perfect!

Kick off was by the Fro-Tee Slips up from the grim north, from the place all you yobs with driver licenses keep yer points: Flensburg, as far north as you can get without bliver dansk (though exiled danish lads where in attendance too).

They have been around since 1989 and for a reason i have avoided them all these years. Still, here and now, i was to give them a chance.

Fro-Tee Slips (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

The Fro-Tee Slips play fast paced Deutschpunk with some Oh-Oh-Choruses and loads of talking between the songs. Actually the north Germans most like call the singer a Labertasche. But they are funny and they had a number of fans and a number of folks being able to sing along in the audience, so there must be some form of attraction (next to the cheap trick of free booze for the audience).

Did i like them? No, there won’t grow love. Do i appreciate what they do? Yes i do, as with any band going up there and play. Just not my niche. They get an extra bonus though for stage attire, as i prefer bands that wear uniform stage uniforms.

Having surveyed the grim north the lot faced some crazy nutters from down South. Switzerland that was, the country that invented punk („Wer hat’s erfunden? Die Schweizer!„) for the German speaking territories.

And with them we not only got stage attire but also stage personas. And a proper intro song based on the name of the band. And i can only assume that the name of band comes thanks to Peter:

You know those kids they get at school,
they've got a motorbike they think they're cool. 
They've got a moped for their sixteenth birthday, 
now you can hear them coming from half a mile away. 

It's the moped lads, they like to think they're bad, 
it's the moped lads, if you hit 'em they'll tell their dads. 

They follow the school bus 'cos they think they're next, 
they try to impress the girls on the back seat. 

They go up the Youth Club and stand outside, 
and talk about the bikes they can only just ride. 

They're about as hard as a lump of shit, 
but they've got two wheels so they think they're it. 
They always show off and try to act flash, 
but the best thing about 'em is 
when they crash. 

(Peter & The Test Tube Babies - Moped Lads)

A reference that today will only ever throw a blank face into any 14 year old – for us in our mid-50s it actually means a lot (and a youth reality).

And here they are – from funny Luzern – the Möped Lads!

Möped Lads (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Great stuff. And great stage personas indeed: On the far left one of the lads who played in Crazy (for me one of the most definite punk bands from CH) sporting a Johnny Moped Commando overall, a nutty singer in the center, another guitar with punk’n’roll outfit and a bass with a heads off to The Clash. And a drummer who got out of his seat for every final chord of a song. Lovely!

How did it sound? It sounded like this:

Maximum energy punk’n’roll with loads of power bulldozing the Knust. For some too simple as a mu-sick-al recipe, for me actually fitting very well the setup of the night.

Möped Lads (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

And they just did not stop or held back, song after song they only ever plowed forward. They also recognized the language barrier and made and effort to explain some of the Swizz words used in the songs. Thanks mates!

Best moment for sure was their adaption of Crazy’s long lost hit „Weisst du noch?„. Just perfect!

Möped Lads (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Great stuff by some great people (who keep a great scene afloat at the Stedel in Luzern).  They got some appreciation from the audience but i have to admit that they deserved even more. I liked them, for many reasons!

That gave way to the Razors, still with Christiane for the off sick Old Erwin (best recovery wishes to him, stay strong!) and in best shape.

Razors (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

They tailored the setlist down a bit and for the occasion, old classics like „Tommys Gang“ needed to make space for some new references like „Razors in the night„.

Razors - Setlist (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018)
Razors – Setlist (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018)

From the first chord they had the attention of the packed Knust and had the audience enjoying it. Song after song they got the people singing and dancing. Within that they also had some perfect memories all the way back to 1978 – it’s has been a while. It has been 40 fucking years actually!

Razors (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

I watched out for this rather new song – a fully fitting ode to our youth:

And now sing-a-long:

It was in 1977
when some school friends came together
No ideas - searching for beers
No more school - acting like fools

There was a new sound called Punk Rock
Driven by guitars - loud´n ready to shock
That give us the kick to build a band
Hey ho - we were in wonderland

We played for us - it was cool
We had so much fun
Rotten clothes - colored hair
Fuck the rules - we don´t care

1977 - punks entered the scene
1977 - smashed up systems dream
1977 - leather studs and booze
1977 - nothing else to loose

No rules - just beer and dope - we cried out loud
No Future - No Hope

And sing-a-long it was for the encore, the lot was up there on the stage and gave the best they had: Their looks, their voices and their energy.

Razors (Knust, Hamburg, 30.12.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

The best perfect end for the show: There ain’t no boundary between those up there and those down there. Actually more often this years i saw those up there seeing other bands with me from down here. In footie it would be UNITED ON THE TERRACES, i’d say here it is UNITY.

Given my hangover from Friday i kept intake limited and headed off before the raunchy party with DJ Schaub was in full swing (and booze would be added to beer).

Well done 2018, you finished on a high!

… out and about: Razors for free (but mind the long train journey)!

I missed the Razors show on the MS Claudia during the week due to the need to finish up with work (as two weeks off and some holidays were ahead of me and me love). I was though happy to the max that there was another occasion to see them: out and about in Wedel and for free. Paired with the fact that my old mate Rudi (now residing in sunny Perth) was still around and in attendance it was a show not to miss.

Getting there was easy (just hop on the S-Bahn at my local station in Altona-Altstadt) but long winded … all the way out to the posh West End, all the way beyond the city limits and actually into Schleswig-Holstein. Luckily the Musikvilla was just opposite the dead end train station, so no further hassle.

I came late and once completed a round of „hi there“ went upstairs to the small room where the bands played … and missed a great set of Es War Mord. Damn!

Es War Mord (Musikvilla Wedel, Hamburg, 25.08.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Es War Mord really got a unique sound and i definitely regret that i did not show up on time. They sport some familiar faces from Berlin and their sound is best described as a dark and mellow E-Moll punk thunderstorm with some good variations on speed and singing style.

I was convinced after the 3 songs i did catch, i will now check out their longplayer „Unter Kannibalen„, please do the same!

Next Hamburgs finest, the Razors. Still with Christiane filling in for Old Erwin, who continues to battle ill health and got a lot of remote love from all around: Everybody was wishing him well!

In front of the stage were about 70 people and as someone mentioned in a side comment „… most of the Krawall 2000 contingent“ (true, it was a well aged audience that just loves the songs and loves the band). And whilst it was largely a Razors following it was not short of support and dancing.

Razors (Musikvilla Wedel, Hamburg, 25.08.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

As ever the Razors paired new songs with their all time classics like this old Stones song (and their own ode towards the fans):

The sound was ok, the lights where not so ok and throughout the set i never got rid of the feeling of speeding, all songs seemed to be with a couple of rounds per minute added – i guess all with that sign above the bar in mind that the last train back into the city was to go at 01:03, something that nobody wanted to miss (as it would have resulted in either paying some hefty taxi far or having to choose the long winded Night Bus – easily more than an hour until you you would smell the city (and we are all city boys’n’girls))

Razors (Musikvilla Wedel, Hamburg, 25.08.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

Their songs go far back in time and this one is almost like a signature song – back then i thought of it as a cheap and badly constructed attempt for a sing-a-long but in hindsight (and hindsight comes always easy) that rather cheap style nowadays makes it worthwhile. It ain’t polished, it ain’t for the Radio and it ain’t for Spotify i guess – but it is for us:

Whatever – today and here, 2018, the Razors look back on 40 years of Punk fucking Rock and onto a lot of highs and a fair share of lows. But them and the Hamburg lot are by now glued together and just friends enjoying the music (and a beer or two). As ever, here is my loveliest song:

That bass line, that drum roll – that chorus! That is just the best sing-a-long and fists in the air song and it is one of the classic Hamburg punk 7″. Sure thing there are other hit records like The Buttocks EP’s (fun fact: Buttocks singer Mike was in the audience) but Tommies Gang is the one i would like bands to cover (now that is a great idea for a Razors Tribute Album: Bands providing their own retention of Tommies Gang!).

Fun fact two: The setlist was hand crafted errrr just a copy of the the last show at the Menschenzoo in Hamburg in July.

Razors - Setlist (Musikvilla Wedel, Hamburg, 25.08.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)
Razors – Setlist (Musikvilla Wedel, Hamburg, 25.08.2018 (c) gehkacken.de)

As noted the there was a bit of speeding, so in time for one last beer and the last train the Razors where done and a lot of the Hamburg lot resorted back to something last done 35 years ago: Travelling home on the last train together with parts of the band. Everybody was in a good mood and most where sufficiently loaded (as beer was cheap in Wedel).

... train ride home with parts of the band ( (c) gehkacken.de 2018)
… train ride home with parts of the band ( (c) gehkacken.de 2018)

Great night, loads of fun and the best: I got to see something new and that something new proved to be good. Though i stand by my standards: It is about seeing bands live and on stage, experience them and judge them only on that. And then get their records to support them!

… when the turnout is friends only: Razors and Spunk Vulcano & The Eruptions on a rather empty night!

In October Dirt Box Disco and Wonk Unit packed the Monkeys and provided utmost fun to the Hamburg lot. The same lot was expected to show up on this lovely Friday, both because it was TGIF and it was Spunk Vulcano and his band (and Spunk is the main force behind all songwriting in DBD i was told).

On top it was the first home appearance for Christane as the stand-in for Erwin with the Razors. But all of that did not lure people down to the Monkeys – i guess it was a mere 75 people who showed up, including some who looked like they had tried the sold out Talco show at the Fabrik 300 meters up the road and did not get a ticket.

First on Razors and with the big burden of Old Erwin still in battle with the big fucking C, something that everybody wishes him well for. Damn fucking C. For him Christiane freed herself up from Gerd duties despite the fact that Gerd had another headlining gig the next day. Was the feel different? Sound wise not but sure thing there where more smiles on stage. And the chorus vocals with a female scent fitted surprisingly well.

Razors (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 23.03.2018) (c) gehkacken.de)

The Razors most likely had the better end of the small turnout, as they could claim nearly 100% of the audience as friends. And that is how they took it and did not give in to shorten the set. Whilst all their hit’s provided enough sing-a-long it was again their David Bowie adaption that did send shivers down everyone spine, aptly introduced by Klaus:

And whilst that would have ended the set under normal conditions them Razors had a surprise for Spunk – they had rehearsed a Dirt Box Disco sing-a-long and invited Spunk onto the stage for the encore. And that provided just great fun to all concerned – be it the Razors, be it the lot in front of the stage or be it them Eruptions, who smiled away on the side in front of the stage.

Here it is, in all beauty, as a one time beauty:

That was just perfect and a neat hats off to Dirt Box and Spunk.

Next on Spunk Vulcano, who we all now, and The Eruptions. Them Eruptions looked young and sported more the American way of Punk – both from a visual but also from a sound. So those who feared a DBD-Clone where proven wrong.

It was the same amount of fun in the lyrics (through hard to make out) and it was a different kind of mu-sick-al energy coming down from the stage.

Spunk Vulcano & The Eruptions (Monkeys Music Club, Hamburg, 23.03.2018) (c) gehkacken.de)

Still, the lot had fun and even a Spunk clone made it into the audience and kept dancing away. Was it as entertaining as Dirt Box Disco? Mhhh, for me not. And i can not even make out why. But what i do know is that leaving that equation aside this was another case of why live mu-sick is to be preferred: I may not buy their records but sure thing i am going to see them live. And it sounded like this youth, listen up:

Spunk finished just short before midnight, leaving some time to have another one for the road with friends and planning more for the weekend.

And those plans where needed, as there was a triple-crown to win: Next to this show the Saturday awaited the lot with Gerd (pushing a show into their busy stadium schedule to make up for the missed Christmas show) and the option for the tripple crown: The Haermorrhoids and DeeCracks (Viennas finest) would grace the Molotow in an after-midnight show. I counted 6 people (including my humble self) that gave into the urge to win that triple crown!