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.
THE GONADS! CHARLTON! SOUTH LONDON! STREET ROCK N ROLL! COCKNEY CULTURE! COCKNEY ROCK! OI-TONE! SKA! BEER! CURRY! WORKERS’ RIGHTS! FLAG-GIRLS! ENGLAND! OI OI OI! THIS IS WHO WE ARE!
Feb 28. Bumper news, chums, and all of it good. Next month we start recording our brand-new studio album, Revolution Now!, which will be released this summer by Randale Records of southern Germany. We will then record London’s Bawling 2, which will be released before Xmas by Soitainly Records of southern Charlton, initially as a download. All the songs are written. Finally, Lord Waistrel has also backed a plan to release TWO MORE Gonads albums next year, these would be Greater Hits Vol IV, and the long promised live album.
The Jolly Pranksters have urged us to research and publish the names of any UK venue which charges “obscene prices” for beer. The brethren will then launch a nationwide campaign of boycotts, named Dom’s Campaign. The PPGB have added the issue to their summer conference debates schedule. Fat Col, who identifies himself as the party’s Minister of Beer, Ale & Cider, tells us that “come the Oi revolution” they plan to slash tax and duties on all domestic beers and fine any public house that charges more than £4 a pint. (Please note: Col is featured here only in his capacity as a PPGB spokesman; in all other matters he is still banned).
STOP PRESS. Work has begun on a protest anthem Put The Boot In To Putin. If it can be recorded and released in time, all revenue from the song will go to Ukrainian relief charities. Watch this space for more news.
Feb 27. RIP Nick Tesco. Sad to report, the charismatic Members frontman died on Friday after a long struggle with various illnesses. Nick was talented, charming and a genuine character. Another great loss.
Our special correspondent, Chelsea Dom, reports that the Last Resort were “fantastic” on Friday night and adds that Lars “has really added something” to the band’s sound. But, and this is where the news gets serious, the gig – at The Underworld, Camden – was flawed for other reasons. An ashen-faced Dom tells us, with great sorrow, that these robber barons were charging £6.72 for a pint of Guinness, and, he adds, “an over-zealous stage manager cut Crashed Out’s set to just twenty minutes.” (“As long as that?” snipes Fat Col, but he is banned from the blog so we ignore him.) Acting on this shocking information, the League of Herbert Gentlefolk have lodged a formal complaint with Human Punk condemning them for “using venues that charge rip-off hipster prices”. A spokesman for Lee Wilson countered that the price “wasn’t too bad, if someone else was paying”, but the serious drinkers of the Jolly Pranksters are believed to be organising an official boycott of The Underworld, direct action may now follow.
Feb 26. ROUND DODGER ALERT. 1.30pm today. Spizz has just been spotted outside of the Iron Horse, Sidcup. Our man on the scene reports: “Spizz came in, looked around for a friendly face, saw none, sighed, counted his pennies, and bought a half of lager.” Avoid the Iron Horse at all costs!
Feb 25. A scene from happier days, Gal with Jennie Bellestar, Garry Johnson and Bev Elliott in the old 12 Bar, once number 12 Denmark Street. The famous street, formerly known as London’s Tip Pan Alley, is rich in rock history. The Sex Pistols used to live above No. 6, the Stones recorded at Regent Sound Studio (No. 4), the Gioconda café (No. 9) was frequented by David Bowie and the Small Faces, the TPA drinking club was a favourite post-pub hangout for the early Gonads, the Blood and the Cockney Rejects, as well as several underworld faces, and Elton John used to write songs in one of the offices with Bernie Taupin. Most significantly of all, we played the 12 Bar on many occasions – often with a full turn-out of Charlton Boys, and once with a loyal party from Wales, which even Phileas Fogg would consider a long way to travel for 45minutes of raucous old cobblers about Franken-Skins, Yetis and unmentionable infections. We had the stage cock back then, before Wattsie vetoed its use, but let’s not get distracted. The main thing is, we’re backing Barnet Mark’s new book Those 12 Bar Nights and if you want to help the kickstarter campaign, this is the place to go. He’s got enough for the paperback but is pushing on to the hardback.
STOP PRESS. A bad day for humanity. We have pals in Ukraine, Russia and Belarus. None of them want Putin’s war. Other than support the Red Cross Ukraine Crisis Appeal, there’s fuck all we can do to help. But we’re thinking of our friends in Kiev and across Eastern Europe and the poor souls who are now living through the worst kind of hell. Putin is pushing the world into a new Dark Age. Don’t let him win. Victory to the Ukrainian freedom fighters! Self-determination for Belarus! Stop Russian imperialism! Roll on the new Revolution. No gods, no masters. Tyrants must fall!
Feb 24. We hear that Lord Waistrel’s son – gentleman of leisure Algernon Casper Mount-Sally Waistrel – is funding a massive new complex in the Norfolk which, we’re told, will contain a punk rock library, meeting rooms and facilities for charities. Young Algy, 73, is even offering office space and a conference room to John King’s People’s Party of Great Britain at discounted rates. Hugely impressed by his generosity, we ask Algernon’s controversial wife, former porn actress Amanda Hump, what the complex will be called. “Waistrel & Son’s Grand Hall Of The People,” she replies, adding seductively, “Subtitled: ‘Charitable Endeavours, Library, Evening Classes, Casino, Massage Parlour, & Strip Club’.” We should have known.
We’ve just spotted a Rolling Stone article discussing Lee ‘Lovejoy’ Wilson’s legendary tightness. We asked Lee if he’d seen it but sadly it’s behind a pay wall, so there’s no chance whatsoever…
Feb 23. RIP brilliant Mark Lanegan who died yesterday of undisclosed causes aged 57. Singer Mark fronted Seattle grunge band the Screaming Trees and later the Queens Of The Stone Age. In 2020, he published his autobiography, Sing Backwards and Weep – one of the most open and honest rock memoirs ever written.
Feb 22. The Kickstarter fundraising campaign for Barnet Mark’s book about the 12 Bar is now live! The book will feature loads of memories from the bands who played there, including us of course – see Wattsie sitting down on the job in our pic. It should be out by the end of April.
In other book news, Gal’s launch party for the 1979 Mod and Ska books – delayed for two years – is now expected to go ahead in May… but Lord Waistrel has vetoed plans for a 2022 Gonads annual…
Foxy’s chat with Gal on Deal Radio, about the Gonads, his wild left-wing teenage years, and more will be on Mixcloud for the rest of the week. Tracks include our own Dogging In Dartford and Federales, along with classics from the Clash, the Rejects and the kings of UK pop reggae.
Feb 21. Breaking news: we will headline a benefit gig for Refuge, the charity for victims of domestic violence, on Sunday May 29th at the Queen’s Head, Stockwell Road, Brixton. Details to follow.
Meanwhile the Last Resort play the Underworld in Camden on Friday, with Crashed Out, Knock Off and Rise Up (and perhaps a surprise unannounced appearance from Donkey Laugh). Tickets still available here.
STOP PRESS. An emissary from John King arrives to deliver a stern bedside message to Gal: We need you fit for the big PPGB push in the summer, our enemies are gathering... Gulp.
Feb 20. Rehearsals earlier today, where the band ran through songs for the new album including Revolution Now!, Scream My Name, Teeth Aht, Pentonville, Ragman's Trumpet and Lunatic Asylum. Note the guest appearance by Ozzy, the labrador! Where, you might ask, is Gal? Where’s Wattsie? Where is Mark McMighty? And what became of the potcheen? These are the questions. Tomorrow… more questions…
If you’re at a loose end tonight, Sunday night is Gonads night on Foxy’s show on Deal Radio, with special guest Gal! The show kicks off at 8pm and will be available on Mixcloud on Tuesday. You lucky people!
Feb 19. Morning campers. We are hoping to announce a new south London date shortly. Details to follow…
Feb 18. Lovers of street culture should check out the second in the Boots & Booze graphic novel collection where the hooligans from Santa Cruz experience a whole new set of trials and tribulations. Once again, the comic comes with a seven-inch single by local rude-boys The Liquidators – Long Time Again b/w Soul Steppin’ (Limited to 1500 copies – 500 apiece in black, beer, and blood red vinyl).
And talking street culture, Glory Boys 2 by Jim Iron and John Steel, is due out this Summer, plunging the East End Mods into a fresh load of Barney Rubble…
Meanwhile, Honey Bane is re-releasing her debut EP, You Can Be You on 12inch vinyl on 4th March.
Sending big Gonads love to the DM today. Thinking of ya, Tel.
Feb 17. Our US agent, Courtney Schwanz, reports a “strong possibility” that the Gonads will return to the West Coast in 2023. Watch this space, while girding your loins for potential disappointment (Isn’t that also Fat Col’s chat-up line? – Wattsie).
Just out, March Of The Insane by Dream Widow – they’re the fictional band from the Foo Fighters soon-come horror movie, Studio 666, and the track is as heavier than a supermassive black hole…
Feb 16. Good news! Gal’s medical team have confirmed that his big bulging lump is not life-threatening. It turns out to be an abdominal pseudo-hernia, caused by shingles. It is treatable and the lump should have subsided by the time we play Glasgow. In the meantime, Lord Waistrel has appointed a nursing team to see Gal through the difficult weeks ahead. Our only disappointment is that we can’t pin his condition on Fat Col or Sandy West (Hollywood Pest). Huge thanks to all your support and concern over the last few days. Here's a pic of
Gal’s chief nurse, ready to handle his lump.
Feb 15. NEW MUSIC COMING! It’s less than a month until we’re back in the recording studio. And our next gig is just 74 days away! Woo-hoo!
Feb 14. We can’t figure out why Fat Col (pictured) finds it so hard to get a date for Valentine’s Day…
In the mean streets of south London, even Cupid carries a cosh but we’re all about making love not war here at Nads HQ/care home for the elderly and infirm. Happy Valentine’s Day people! Get her in the mood with a burst of this romantic classic.
Feb 13. Thanks for your kind messages for the stricken Gal and your entirely serious suggestions of what ails him. Let’s discount immediately though the popular rumour that his mystery lump is “the final hiding place of Lee Wilson’s wallet”. Unless he starts coughing up white fivers, of course.
Feb 12. More bad news for Gal as medical expert Hazel from TV’s First Dates offered this damning verdict: “You’ve got to accept you’re really past it” and “You’re too old to be going on stage”. So no beer, no Rubies, no gigs – he’s proper cattled.
A serious footnote: Gal’s ordeal is 100percent genuine, as is the pain he’s in, but those who complain we shouldn’t take the piss should remember that this is the Gonads blog – taking the piss is what we do. It’s also what he’d want us to do. Let’s hope medics work out what his lump is and how to fix it double quickly.
To reassure us about the Gonads future, Miss Management tells us, “We haven’t got a plan, so nothing can go wrong.” Excellent. Then she adds in a whisper, “But just in case, new singer auditions start tomorrow.”
Feb 11. Another set-back for Gal as the last doctor he saw yesterday ordered him to “stop drinking for at least a month” (really!) and to abstain from a list of grub including curries, chilis and especially “evil ring-stingers” (note the authentic medical terminology employed there). To make it worse, the brutal order was related to other problems picked up in blood tests rather than Gal’s current predicament. As the news broke, we got a call from hospital orderly “Loctaf” who made the extraordinary claim that the booze-n-curry ban doc was working for Wattsie Watts. “Wattsie hates Rubies, and has clearly bribed this quack to deliver a false verdict in order to undermine the traditional Gonads beer-and-curry nights, either with cold hard cash or her seductive feminine wiles, I’d imagine”. Blimey. It’s only when the caller goes into a furious rant claiming that Wattsie is “a cruel mendacious heart-breaker” and a “Chelsea-supporting crusher of dreams” that we realise that “Loctaf” is Fat Col spelt backwards and hang up. The oaf has been banned again.
Feb 10. The mystery of Gal’s large protuberance continues. Fit Bird confirms that he has now been seen by no less than six doctors and surgeons in two hospitals and undergone various tests and scans, including a CT scan and an ultrasound. (And at one stage was given an injection meant for another patient – sadly not morphine). The good news is that the lump is not life-threatening, and is neither a hernia nor an aneurism. The bad news is, the medics aren’t certain what it is or what caused it and Gal must undergo yet more tests. One theory, started by the caring Wattsie Watts, is that he has been impregnated by her alien – “revenge at last,” she cackles satanically. But Col reckons that Wattsie did the dirty deed herself using a reconstructed stage cock and “a pint of alien jism she’d syphoned off earlier” – which is why we’ve had to ban him again. As a serious footnote, the affliction is not expected to make the band postpone any rehearsals or recordings, or cancel any gigs.
Feb 9. We are reluctant to mention Fat Col but he’s just rung the blog to reveal that Gal was rushed to hospital this morning after waking up with “a significant swelling”. The large lump, said to be the size of one third of a premiership football, developed overnight. We feel justified in reporting this as a) it’s entirely true and b) it’s of significant concern to blog readers. The most likely explanation is a hernia, although doctors are also testing for an aneurism. More news when we have it.
Feb 6. In a shock development, Lord Waistrel last night formally announced that his son – gentleman of leisure Algernon Casper Mount-Sally Waistrel – will succeed him as Gonads manager upon his retirement, and that his controversial wife, former porn actress Amanda Hump, will thereupon become Lady Waistrel. The surprise announcement sent shivers through Nads HQ, as it is well known that Algernon has no time for punk. Some well-placed sources claimed that the news was “a stunt” and “a diversion” intended to deflect mounting public criticism that this blog has become dull ever since Waistrel banned all mention of Fat Col (under intense pressure from Wattsie Watts). One said, “If everyone is talking about Amanda and fretting about Algy’s plans, they won’t be pining for Col or slagging off the blog. It’s smoke and mirrors.”
However, there are worrying signs that the change is serious and may even be imminent. Algernon’s close pal, Paul “Stalin” Hallam, made a surprise visit to Nads HQ yesterday (dressed as US wrestler The Undertaker) and, between coughing over everyone, at one stage appeared to be measuring up the rehearsal room for curtains. Said Effete El, “This news has come right out of the blue. Algernon is the eldest of Waistrel’s thirteen known children but he hasn’t even been seen at a Gonads gig, or indeed even mentioned before. As for Amanda. Well, just watch her in ‘Upstairs, Downstairs, From Behind’ or ‘Ping Pong Palace Maid’ to see what that one is capable of.”
So what changes will Algernon make to the Gonads when the move happens? Our insider whispers, “Gal has already told his most trusted friends that this year’s Rebellion will be the last one he ever plays. And one day soon he might even tell the band. But the fear is that Algy will ban all UK punk gigs. He wants to move the Gonads out of chaos and anarchy and into variety entertainment. If he is in charge by the time of An Audience with Garry Bushell and his Gonads later this year then you can probably expect it to take place in a circus tent with a colourful troupe of acrobats, aerialists, contortionists, comedians, jugglers, jesters, lion-tamers, leggy dancers, freaks and funambulists.” Blimey. The only hope, says El, is that “Lord Waistrel hangs on in charge until his dying breath.” And you never thought you’d hear someone say that…
Feb 5. Weekly Update: the only news this week is that we have been slagged off for our lack of news, specifically Gonads related news. Angry Club 77 spokesman Effete El thunders: “By boycotting Fat Col you have effectively castrated the blog. Wattsie might be happy, but what about the readers? We want filth, backstabbing, dirty jokes, Carry On humour and vicious bitching. Odd isn’t it that as soon as you ban Col the entire well dries up?” He goes on, “I bet you don’t even know what’s going on inside the Jolly Pranskters anymore. It’s tragic mate.” Well hold on, we do know about the Pranksters. For starters we know that, rather like the Vera Lynn Fan Club, the brethren will meet again… we don’t know where, don’t know when.
In the absence of news, here’s a new item: Ask the Gonads anything! Question One: haven’t you got an unreleased live album? What’s happening with that? A) Yes we have, recorded at a Japanese restaurant in north London a few years back. Nothing’s happening with it at the moment but never say never. Q2. Could Wattsie intervene and bring Fat Col back into the fold? A) She could, but she won’t. Q3. Have you still got plans for a secret gig at Awkwright’s in Rainham for Club 77 members this summer? A) It’s secret! Those who know, know. Q4. Are some of these questions made up just to remind you of stuff you would otherwise forget? A) You might think that, we couldn’t possibly comment.
Random stuff. Good luck to Terence Hayes, DM, for his forthcoming operation. We would say “Break a leg” but that’s rubbing it in… The Spitfires’ final album Play For Today will be released on Acid Jazz on the 25th February; the first 500 LP copies come with a limited edition lyric sheet insert and the Watford Wonders will play their last ever gig the following day at the Electric Ballroom – tickets are already 80% gorn.