Please note the items you are about to read consist largely of scurrilous gossip, vicious back-stabbing and idle speculation. As Jon Stewart might say, its stories are not fact checked. Its informants are not journalists. And its opinions are not fully thought through.
We're closed for a bit. Back soon. In the meantime, here are some pretty pictures to squeeze your lemon.
Sept 27. Woo-hoo! There's a lot of stuff in the news right now. Brad v Angelina, Trump v Clinton, Allardyce v the axe… But you'll always find the biggest news right here on this blog, pop kids. And believe us, news doesn't get much bigger than this: yes, we have a release date for All The Loon Stompers! It's 13th October! History in the making! (PS We don't care too much if Big Sam is "at it" as long as England start winning.)
Sept 26. WANTED for Oi documentary: any photos or film footage of the early days of street punk in the UK, specifically early shots/film of the Cockney Rejects, Cock Sparrer, Sham 69, The Business, The Gonads, Blitz, Menace, the Last Resort, Splodge, 4-Skins, The Oppressed, Red Alert, Prole, The Strike, Violators, Peter & The Test Tube Babies, The Postmen, Garry Johnson etc and skins and punks, anti-unemployment marches, football hooligans, etc. This global search is for a documentary film directed and produced by Sandie West. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with subject title "Global Search" Or write via Beach Dancer Films, 3401 Pacific Ave, 1st Flr, 2B, Marina Del Rey, CA 90292, USA Attn: Director, Producer Sandie West, Beach Dancer Films.
Please note: the cut-off date to buy early bird tickets for next year's Rebellion is 30th September. Until then, weekend tickets will only set you back £140.
Out now: Beach Slang's new album A Loud Bash Of Teenage Feelings on green vinyl (from Polyvinyl), an "explosion of high-energy pop punk" it says here. Vinyl LP includes digital download.
Book news: glad tidings Cro-Mags lovers. Harley Flanagan's memoir, Hard-Core: Life Of My Own has just been published by Feral House…
Sept 24. There is sadly no end yet to the great Waterbomb-Gate scandal, as Waistrel claims to have unearthed devastating fresh evidence. A grim-faced Fat Col, now fully established in his new role as toady to the landed gentry, tells us: "Another eye-witness has come forward whose evidence has raised doubts over Richie Rocker's entire half-baked investigation". To wit: "There was a second water-bomb thrower!" Col tells us, his eyes gleaming with righteous indignation. "Our new witness swears on all that his holy – Sandra Biggs' underwear purloined from her washing line in 1980; which is Oi's equivalent of the Turin Shroud –
that the second bomb came from a completely different angle from a completely different hotel window and was all together more accurate". So if Lee Wilson threw the first, who hurled the second? Col supplies us with these less than helpful odds: 3/1 PAUL DEVINE (round-dodger). "He was seen backstage in Berlin that day where the drinks were free and is of course an inveterate prankster." 7/1 SOUTH COAST STEVE. "He is rumoured to have made a full confession at the gig but nobody can be sure as no-one can ever understand a bleeding word the mumbling fool is saying". 20/1 THE NOSHER. "She was there but generally prefers to receive wet gifts rather than deliver them". 30/1. WATFORD JON. "He had the motive and the opportunity, but the attack came 24hours after Jon had started drinking. He would have surely lacked the necessary accuracy and agility." 50/1 SHONA WATTSIE WATTS. "Unlikely perhaps but she could have viewed the stunt as an audition for her joining the band full-time. Plus she has blocked me as a friend on Facebook so her loyalty is clearly suspect. It's time so-called 'nice Shona' came under thorough investigation." 100/1 HEAVY METAL HEATHER. "She famously prefers anal sex having, ahem, worn out the main point of entry through years of vigorous over-use. She wasn't in Germany at all that weekend but deserves a mention as she is constantly in my thoughts." Oaf.
Sept 21. Gal has brought in a reputable private investigator, Richie Rocker from the Crows, to look into the murky “Water-bomb Gate” affair and salvage the Gonads’ reputation in the light of Lord Waistrel’s wrong-headed and expensive public inquiry. Richie, who was at the scene in Berlin on that fateful day, tells us: “The smart money is on the round dodger!” “Lee Wilson?” we ask. “Indubitably,” he replies. “Let us consider the facts. He was the only one not in the bar when the event took place, although seconds before someone had shouted ‘Lee, it’s your round’ so this could account for his absence. Secondly, as the lethal missile sped downwards a tuneless monotone of ‘Each Dawn I Die’ was heard coming from the top floor. Thirdly, after the event, a man in a jacket that looked like it was last seen in the 1960s TV show Daktari was seen legging it down a hotel corridor laughing. Fourthly a small bag of water is the only thing that Wilson might give away for free…And fifthly, let’s face it it’s the sort of thing the tight-arsed, round dodging c*** would get up to, just to show off and try and impress the ladies.” Richie concludes: “Any suggestion that any member of The Gonads was responsible for the outrage are entirely without foundation.” Chilcott eat yer heart out!
Sept 19. Here is ‘Hodor’, the brand new Game Of Thrones track by The Gonads vs Anarchy Reigns. This will get axed off YouTube quicker than Ned Stark lost his head, so you only have seconds to memorise the complicated lyrics.
Sept 18. It’s coming, it’s coming….
Lord Waistrel has devised a scheme to divert attention from the band’s civil war. He’s doing it like governments do – by launching an expensive and pointless inquiry into matters that should have been left buried in the past. Inquiry 1 will be into Berlin’s Waterbomb-Gate. When persons unknown attempted to splatter Chelsea Dom and his delightful paramour Mandy Crow with a fully loaded water bomb thrown from the top floor of a hotel in east Berlin overlooking the remains of the Wall. Inquiry 2 will concern the painful circumstances behind ‘Ruptured Foreskin Blues’, a Gonads song played only in the Black Forest but clearly based on a painful true incidence. Gal has dismissed the inquiries as “a ridiculous waste of time and resources” but Waistrel’s spokesman, the Judas Fat Col tells us: “Berlin was a serious incident that saw innocent Dutch punks evicted from their hotel rooms. The water bomb was expertly thrown by a master of the dark art and missed its target by inches, causing some anxiety to our good friends Dom and Mandy. A second bomb took an elderly local man off his bicycle. I am amazed that Gal so-called Gonad should want to bury our inquiry.” As to ‘Ruptured Foreskin Blues’, Colin continues: “The lyrics only allude to the cause. His Lordship wants detailed photographic evidence for his own pleasure, sorry, investigation.” Oaf.
Sept 14. Ska News: Bad Manners have announced a second 40th anniversary London show at Under the Bridge on 23rd December. The first, on the 16th, sold out in record time… Neville Staple will be releasing a new double album next month called: Return Of Judge Roughneck (and Dub Specials), supported by a UK tour featuring Neville and his band with support Christine "Sugary" Staple. They play Brixton Jamm on 8th October, tickets: £15.00.
Sept 13. We've seen the artwork for All The Loon Stompers! It's blinding and it's soon-come people!!!
Meanwhile the Last Resort start their Japanese tour on Friday. They'll be flogging a special Japanese edition of their This Is England album with all the lyrics in Nipponese. The CD will be strictly limited to 500 copies (400 for Japan, 100 for the rest of the world) and it comes with an obi stripe (look it up - we had to!). You can get your copy from our old mates at www.randaleshop.de.
In other news, the odds of The Hungry & The Hunted podcast coming back imminently are described as "considerably better than Fat Col's chances of showing off his cream horn on Channel 4's Bake Off". Watch this space.
Get well soon Garry Johnson. The punk poet has been laid up for about six weeks after he was forced by ill-health to cancel his Rebellion appearance.
Sept 12. This Saturday there's a special screening of Anarchy! – McLaren Westwood Gang at the 100 Club. Phil Strongman, who used to flog t-shirts in the Kings Road, directed the music documentary which includes candid interviews with Talcy Malcy conducted in Paris and London along with stunning unseen footage about his childhood, his 1960s activism, Vivienne Westwood, his shops and his role in punk 'anti-fashion'. The film also covers the history of European anarchism and, we're told, "a compelling exposé of the real birth of the Sex Pistols". Talking heads include The Clash, the 101ers, Bow Wow Wow, Adam Ant, Boy George, Don Letts, Tony Wilson, Tracey Emin, Stuart Christie, Nick Egan and old Viv herself (Wot? No Soo Catwoman? – Ed). The screening is at 6pm, the tickets are here.
Gal and Steve Whale chaired the inaugural meeting of the exclusive 1805 Drinking Club last night with a group of hand-picked enthusiasts. You can't join this club, you have to be invited (a bit like the Masons). But naturally if you don't know the significance of the 1805 you won't be getting in. Round-dodgers and shandy drinkers are already banned. Hard luck Lee.
Sept 10. Great news! Our blinding Ska and skinhead reggae compilation album All The Loonstompers is "expected" by the end of this month. Mind you, that said, our minicab to the Poacher's Pocket was apparently "just turning into your road now, luv" ten minutes ago. And that still ain't here either...
Sept 9. Our Number One fan, Terence Hayes (PM) has accepted Fat Col's invitation to "fix" the growing rift between Gal and Lord Waistrel. El Tel, confident that Waistrel never reads this blog, opines that the good Lord "needs a good kick in the bollocks – end of" for causing the gaping split but he goes on diplomatically "This needs to be handled with kid gloves so as to get the mighty Gonads on track and back to their very best with the new up-and-coming material". So mote it be. But, um, Waistrel don't know about 'Hodor' yet...
Music Noos: Louise Distras releases her new single, 'Aileen' on the 30th September, her first record since her Dreams From The Factory Floor. It's been co-produced by Springsteen's producer Ross Petersen and the great Steve Whale. You can pre-order it from here.
Meanwhile the excellent Beach Slang have just stuck out a video of 'Atom Bomb' their latest exuberant punkpop eruption of a number, as a taster for their new album A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings due out on September 23, 2016 via Polyvinyl... and Dagenham's Underclass UK have recorded a brand new album which will be released digitally next month, a physical release should follow...
See the video for Green Day's new song Revolution Radio here.
Sept 8. R.I.P. reggae legend Prince Buster. 'Buster he sold the heat, with a rocksteady beat... '
In record news, Longshot have just released Rust's new 'Skins & Punks' 7inch ep... a split single from the Seaside Rebels and Legion 76 called 'Turning The Tide' on coloured vinyl... and Victory's latest 7incher 'The Code'.
Lord Waistrel is claiming responsibility, with some justification, for the new pint-sized champagne bottles that are now on the market. Fat Col tells us: "Lord Waistrel invented the pint of champagne top as a gentleman's tipple. He is nothing but a visionary." What a creep.
STOP PRESS. Oh gawd. We're hearing reports that Gal has gone ahead and recorded a brand new Game Of Thrones inspired stomper of a song with Clyde Ward and Duncan from Anarchy Reigns called 'Hodor'. Waistrel will go garrity!
Sept 4. Lord Waistrel today announced that he is planning a number of events in 2017 as part of the Gonads' glorious 'Forty Years of Failure' anniversary celebrations. These will include:
*Nads Fest, an all-day event in or near London.
*The Pure Punk For Row People live bootleg.
*A series of live dates, which are likely to include shows in continental Europe and on the US eastern seaboard featuring the Gonads USA. (Dates in Argentina, Brazil and the Balkans are still "subject to negotiations").
In other news: Pirates Press have just released the new NOi!se 7inch single 'Dull The Pain' b/w 'Betrayed' which comes in white, gold and green vinyl (also available from Randale in Europe)... Blitz's classic Voice Of A Generation LP has been re-released on vinyl by Radiation Reissues, with three additional tracks... Warzone's 1987 debut album Don't Forget The Struggle, Don't Forget The Streets will be re-released on 16th September on Revelation Records...
Sept 3. Terence Hayes, PM, is stepping in to try and negotiate a peace deal between Gal and Lord Waistrel. Fat Col tells us: "The PM is the only man respected by both sides with the clout to mediate, he's like Mr. Wolf from Pulp Fiction only with, wossname, memory issues... "
Oi News: now available from Randale Records: Control's fourth album United In Blood... the Angry Agenda's new album Society... Bishops Green cover of Eddie & the Hot Rods' 'Do Anything You Wanna Do'... and the Generators/Crashed Out split 10incher, featuring four songs from each band. In other news, Sick Of It All release a new five track album When The Smoke Clears in November.
Sept 1st. From our war correspondents Sid Sturm & Doris Drang: Bad news music lovers. Popular beat combo the Gonads are being torn apart by a savage war of words, we can reveal today. Band manager Lord Waistrel flew back from Sandy Beach, Barbados, on Tuesday and immediately SCRAPPED "ludicrous" plans for the band to develop a "drunk set". Insisting that Gonadery only works as "pure punk for row people", his Lordship also condemned "the so-called Garry Bushell Experience" (GBX) project as a "doomed folly" built on "delusion and wishful thinking". He is said to have described Gal's new songs as "must-hear for masochists".
A furious Gal hit back dubbing Waistrel "out of touch" (true) and "power mad" (undoubtedly); adding that the aristocratic manager was "a fading tyrant on the brink of insanity" (no comment), and "a near-corpse, with all the long-term vision of a blind goldfish". These and more heated words were exchanged during what eye-witnesses describe as "an onslaught of flying furniture" at Nads HQ in beautiful, downtown Charlton. But the chaos didn't end there. To add to the confusion, radical socialist Wattsie Watts has threatened to QUIT the band if Waistrel pushes through his plans to record 'Let's Frack' as a single. Experienced Wattsie watchers say that the cuddly Corbynista has reached the end of her tether and has already started moves against band management by ruthlessly unfriending Colin 'Fat Col' Gannon on Facebook, drastic action that has driven poor, heart-broken Col to "Barclaying" over other women.
Upping the ante, Gal is also believed to be on the verge of QUITTING the Gonads to throw himself full-time into GBX "to prove Waistrel wrong". Unperturbed his Lordship is already secretly auditioning for "someone young and virile" to play "the part of Gal Gonad" for a raft of 40th anniversary gigs next year. He is thought to have lined up the Shakespearean actress Anna Maxwell Martin for what he calls "the Wattsie role".
Speaking to us exclusively, a well-oiled Waistrel outrageously CONDEMNED the band's recent acoustic album London Bawling as "a sell-out" and DMG as "an unnecessary diversion". And he RULED OUT all proposed SkaNads gigs, including Skamouth next April, citing "the disaster that was Bournemouth" as justification. The move is widely interpreted as a snub to the brilliant All The Loon Stompers Ska and skinhead reggae compilation which may or may not be released later this month (Diana moves in mysterious ways Randale's wonders to perform). Waistrel's own "pure punk" Gonads live album is due for a 2017 summer release.
We attempted to contact Gal for clarification but could only get hold of his loose-lipped PA, Fit Bird who said that he "would not back down" and was pushing ahead with GBX. She claimed that Gal has written "a shed-load" of new songs with Clyde Ward including 'Becky's Bucket', 'Flann O'Brien's Bicycle', and 'The Great Sidcup Salami Scandal', adding that the project was being funded by Waistrel's great rival, the Silicon Valley multi-billionaire Chad Glockenspiel.
Many Gonads experts are calling this the greatest crisis in the band's 39-year tragicomic history. The intellectual Frank Furedi dubbed it "a right old mess and no mistake". Even Fat Col had no insights to offer. He told us "All we know for certain is that at the moment there is one Gonads gig in the book with the Rejects at Christmas and after that chaos will reign." Asked for his thoughts on the rift, Gannon said only that Waistrel had told him managing the band was a "Sisyphean task". And is it, we asked? "No idea," Gannon replied. "I don't know what Sisyphean means although I think I might have caught a dose of it once from the Nosher". Oaf.
Sources close to the band say they are "shocked and saddened by the development". Whispered one: "In the old days, wiser heads like FB would have solved the drama with a couple of phone calls, some bar-room diplomacy and a few good-natured home truths. Sadly FB has been working flat out on Nads-Fest and the Great Gonads Curry project for at least three years and for the moment is out of the game". More news when we have it.