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.
March 31. Our very first Geezer of the Month award goes to Jay Letendre aka Tippy, aka The Human Tripod, for his devotion to punk rock, the Gonads, the past and the future. Here is the great man pictured with Shiragirl on our recent US jaunt. We hope that the supreme honour of this new and prestigious award does not go to his head. Stay street old chum. (PS Scrotum, Lord Waistrel’s wrinkled retainer, asks us to remind Jay that he is still waiting for "a certain package" in the post. We have no idea what that means). Tune back soon for our inaugural Woman of the Week award...
Random bollocks: Hollywood bigwig and stunt-driver Sandie West tells us that the movie of Garry Johnson’s novel Serial Killer will “definitely” be made and that there is “real interest” in a big screen adaptation of Diabolical Liberty, the brilliant comic fantasy debut from G.Llewellyn Barker – Exciting!... We suppose you know that next month PSK fest in Stockholm has been cancelled, a bugger as Gal was due to DJ there. The Bitch tells us that the headliners (The Professionals and The Exploited) “were, like Fat Col on a Saturday night, not much of a pull”. We tell her she’ll have Wattie on her back. “Not for the first time,” she purrs demurely... Christine “Sugary” Staple has recorded her debut album with her husband, the great Neville, and Roddy Radiation. It’s soon-come from Cleopatra Records... Forced Reality’s self-titled album is out again on coloured vinyl from Taang! for the first time this century...
This is the Iron Maiden pinball machine! Called Legacy of The Beast, it’s manufactured by Stern Pinball Inc and will be available in pro, premium and limited edition models all featuring a dozen classic Maiden tracks. The company say: “The Iron Maiden pinball machines aim to reflect the same excitement, energy, and experience of a live Iron Maiden concert. Players will immerse themselves in an interactive Iron Maiden universe transforming into various forms of Eddie, the band’s legendary mascot. Players, as Eddie, will embark on a quest to defeat the Beast” (that’s their Beast, not ours) “and his minions across the Legacy Of The Beast mobile game and comic strip world”. All three pinball machine tables feature artwork by Zombie Yeti AKA Maiden fan Jeremy Packer. The premium and limited edition models include an interactive sarcophagus ball lock, a secret tomb entrance and two custom Eddie sculptures. Boss Gary Stern calls to say that Maiden are “one of the most iconic bands of all time”. We ask him what the chances are of Stern producing a deluxe Orgasm Guerrillas psychedelic cribbage set and the line goes strangely dead. Bloody Russian hackers.
March 30. A quick reminder – the East End Badoes’ album launch is on 14th April, a fortnight tomorrow, at the 100 Club. They will be supported by the Violators, Knock Off & Geoffrey Oi!Cott. It should be another great Human Punk night, although we’re a bit concerned about the Violators who have been begging for someone (anyone!) to drive them from Derbyshire to London for the show and back home again. Their Facebook appeal promises that the band would pay the volunteer chauffeur their petrol money (very big of them!), and put ’em on the guest-list. So that’s a round-trip of around 360miles in return for...free entry (financial equivalent? 15quid). If they get a taker for that they could put Uber out of business. There’s no mention of a plus one. They’re not even offering to buy the driver a beer for their trouble. In fact they say “All we ask is you stay sober and drive us whilst we will probably end up pissed...” This level of meanness has been condemned as “Scrooge-like” by Martin Sporrell (aggressive Gooner), “exploitative” by Corbynista Wattsie Watts and “impressive” by Lee Wilson, although a friend says “Lee wouldn’t pay the petrol money, he thinks just being in his presence should be reward enough.” Fat Col was thinking of volunteering on condition Helen Hill sits on his lap for the entire journey. We had to break it to him that Helen ain’t in the band these days. (Nor are Coley, Matchi or Ajax). It’s just Cess on vocals with Jori from the Bandoleros taking Helen’s role and some new geezers. Let’s hope they’re good. We always liked the Violators but let’s just pray that they don’t make the same schoolboy fashion errors they did years ago. The camouflage boiler suit with droog-style bowler, pictured, is a definite no-no.
The Violators in 1982. Sultry Helen Hill attempts to distract attention from the shocking street-fashion violation behind her...
March 29. Following his successful counter-coup, Fat Col has taken temporary control of Gonads management. But he has been plunged immediately into a fresh controversy after angry feminists demanded that we stop using “sexist” flag girls – even though we haven’t had any for at least five years! In response the bull-headed Gannon has launched an appeal for “new and nubile flag-girls”. Col issued a press release stating “bringing back the Gonads flag girls will restore the band to their saucy glory, for too long we have been cowed by the thought police of political correctness.” He goes on: “Unemployed F1 models welcome!” His attitude is certain to alienate militant Corbynista Wattsie Watts – even though she was once a flag girl herself. But has she enough allies in the band to prevent it from happening? Power-mad Col has also appointed Si Spanner as our “ambassador to Israel” to secure us gigs in Tel Aviv, and called for a Gonads curry night to “agree future direction and expel dissidents”. Blimey. Any chance of a London gig, we ask? “Only if it’s in Plumstead,” he replies. “I like to get home well before last orders.” Oaf.
SAUCY GLORY: Vikki Thomas, our flag girl for ‘British Steel’ at the Circus Tavern, Purfleet.
SHAMEFUL PAST: Wattsie in happier flag girl days for England’s Glory in Twickenham.
HURRY UP HARRIET: model Harriet gives it some welly in Highbury.
AUDITION TIME: a Gonads fanatic auditions for the role in Croydon.
March 28. No sooner do we shut down this blog than we are forced back to confront disturbing internet reports painting a distressing picture of the Gonads as a “band in turmoil”. So what is the truth? It seems that in the absence of Gal (book writing), Clyde (back in LA) and Waistrel (ensconced in Barbados) Phil Badoe has staged a sneaky backdoor coup to manage the band and force us into a series of poorly paid weekend gigs in Germany and Benelux! In response, Fat Col has just staged a counter-coup with his sights set firmly on grander tours of India, Israel, Mexico, Canada and Eastern Europe. Col, emboldened by a stolen crate of Mad Dog 20/20, tells us he envisages a Gonads line-up where “Paul is on vocals, Phil is on bass, Clyde is on rhythm guitar, McMighty is on lead, Motorhead Andy is back on drums, Christine Staple is on backing vocals, Gal is on a bar stool knocking back Stella and Wattsie is on the merch table flogging the t-shirts”. It’s a harsh vision, he says, but a bold and practical one. Blimey.
March 27. By accident this blog appears to have come back on a daily basis. We apologise for this inconvenience. Please note that Gal’s Rancid Sounds podcast goes out live at 11pm UK time tonight on 2nd City Radio. Our own radio silence will now resume. Excelsior!
March 26. Many readers have contacted us to ask “Who is the O.B.?” and “Why have we not heard about this mysterious figure before?” Well, the O.B. – or “Old Bastard” – is very well known in Jolly Prankster circles, being one of the founding fathers of modern Pranksterism (up there with Terence Hayes PM, “MG” and the High Priest himself). If anything he is even more senior than the PM who was merely a Tyler when the founding fathers re-launched the fraternal fellowship on the fringes of Newcastle many years ago under the watchful eye of Batttttty herself. It was then on that riotous day that the “new commonwealth” era of the brotherhood began. Tony Van Frater (R.I.P.) was initiated into the order. Paul Gascoigne bought the drinks. And MacGonad seemed recognisably human. We cannot reveal O.B.’s true identity largely because the shock would probably kill poor Wattsie Watts. (Prankster-sceptic Wattsie doesn’t even know about the Roswell branch of the brotherhood which has at least one extra-terrestrial member and which recently quit the US Merry Fellows to align “solely and completely” with the English Pranksters – buckle up, this could get messy).
Wattsie is fully on top of the Atacame alien mystery however. The mummified remains of a six-inch humanoid were found in an abandoned mining town in the Chilean desert some 15 years ago. The skeleton was six inches tall, but the bones had some features of a child aged six to eight. The head was an elongated cone shape. And instead of the usual 12 pairs of ribs found on humans, Ata had only 10 pairs. Many saw it as potential evidence for alien life. But scientists at Stanford University extracted DNA from the mummy’s bones and have just announced that Ata was in fact a still-born baby girl with devastating mutations. Specifically she had “seven different types of profound mutations within the DNA strand that control bone growth”. La belle Wattsie is having none of this. “Seven profound DNA mutations is not human,” she tells us. “How many mutations did ET have? Six? Eight?” Speaking from her deluxe microbiology and genome research laboratory in beautiful downtown Welling, Wattsie goes on: “This is a cover-up plain and simple. Anna in V only had four DNA differences from us and she was definitely a lizard.” Well you can’t argue with that.
In Ska news, the new album from Alpheus, Light Of Day is out now. Eleven tracks, produced by Roberto Sánchez available from Liquidator Music...
The weekend’s memorial shows for New York punk legend Kenny Kendra were an amazing success. Organised by our old mate Todd Radick the two-day happening took place at the Bowery Electric in the Bowery, and The Well in Brooklyn and saw spirited performances by punk and rockabilly bands, including our brothers the Uprisers. L.E.S. Stitches, The Press and Blanx 77 played the first night at the Bowery Electric. The Uprisers, The Krays, The Omega Men and the Memphis Morticians stormed the Brooklyn gig. US Gonad Jay “Tippy” Tripod said: “Kenny was an incredible person and a star on the New York scene. Everyone involved did her proud”.
Our mates the Burek Brothers have just released their debut single Black Tree Hill b/w The Boys Of 79 as a download available via the usual suspects. The lads are ex-punks specialising in “outlaw country” and “alt-folk”. Reviewer Fat Col says “It’s the Bureks!”
March 25. The latest Vive Le Rock is just out. Hurrah! The forward-looking mag delivers a 1978 special featuring THE RAMONES! PUBLIC IMAGE LTD! BLONDIE! JOHNNY THUNDERS! THE ADVERTS! THE CLASH! ELVIS COSTELLO! THE JAM! SHAM! VERA LYNN! (Are you sure? – Ed) MAX BYGRAVES! (Really? – Ed), and many more. Gloomy critic Fat Col has condemned the issue for being “way too up to date”, adding “Where the hell are Vesta Tilly and Marie Lloyd?” He concludes: “I know we change the clocks this weekend, but this is fucking ridiculous! Hey Eugene what year is it in New Zealand you Kiwi c***?” Yes, thanks for that.
Prankster alert. In a major development, the O.B. himself will give the keynote address at next weekend’s festivities.
Reminder: Lee Scratch Perry’s Vision of Paradise film will be shown at Koko Camden tomorrow. Lee, who was 82 last Tuesday, will also perform with his full band.
March 24. Out now, the new album from The Goddamn Gallows. Called The Trial, the blistering CD spans rockabilly, psychobilly, punk, bluegrass and metal. It’s on Sailor's Grave Records... and Music On Vinyl have re-released Madball’s 1994 album Set It Off as a 180g colour LP. Limited to 1,500 numbered copies.
March 23. Here is outrageous Yank comedian Shayna Ross live at the Comedy Store in LA. Shayna, who also fronts a punk band, has been dubbed “the punk rock Joan Rivers” and “the new Queen of Mean”. She is coming to England in retaliation for all the “piss-useless” Brit comedians currently operating in the USA, such as fat boy James Corden, Russell Grant, and Ricky Gervais. Our mates in the States tell us that she is funnier than all of them put together and a helluva lot ruder.
March 22. Gal recorded his latest Rancid Sounds show yesterday with tracks from Loudmouth, Penetration, the East End Badoes, the Muff Wigs, Rum Thief, Susan Cadogan, Gimpfist, Shandy, Skurvi and progressive doom band King Goat. Outlaw country outfit the Burek Brothers play live in the studio. We’ll let you know when it’s up. (Insert Fat Col joke here).
Record Noos: Slash is making a new album with Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators. It’s due out this Autumn... AC/DC are rumoured to be writing a new album with Axl Rose... Yank punk leg-ends The Queers have re-recorded their 1988 album Punk Rock Confidential with guest musicians and are re-issuing it as Punk Rock Confidential Revisited. It’s on sale next month, on CD from Rad Girlfriend Records on CD and by Asian Man Records on vinyl... Long Island hardcore herberts Out Live Death have released their latest album Has the Past Taught us Nothing? Via State Of Mind Recordings.
Fat Col, the man who puts the crap in crapulent, calls up complaining that ITV are “mining my nightmares” . How so, we ask? Well he says: “On last night’s Corrie, their Shona gets all passionate with David, snogging and rubbing and so on, but when she starts to undo his flies he freezes and can’t get it up. They must be inside my head cos I experienced that very same scene as a night terror with our Shona after my last phal... ” Hmm. Uncanny. He goes on: “Obviously the first bit ain’t so much my nightmare as a premonition.” In your dreams, fat boy.
STOP PRESS - Rose Tattoo play Islington O2 Acadamy on Thursday 13th September with Girlschool as special guests. Tickets go on sale Monday.
March 21. Here is the trailer for Jamie Brooks’ epic new punk rock crime movie Bomb City. It looks the business.
March 20. If we were back – and we definitely aren’t – we would almost certainly be telling you about the disastrous inaugural meeting of the Orgasm Guerrillas Appreciation Society called on by Muttley McBain, a retired Road Rat turned mystic seer. McBain, 47, believes the Guerrillas’ mixture of herculean riffs and “apparently meaningless lyrics” have “the power to shake men’s souls and open up new vistas of awareness and imagination”. The big man is campaigning for them to reunite and tour. A noble cause of course. Unfortunately the sparsely attended meeting in the upper room of a pub in Sutton, Surrey, on Sunday fell a bit flat. Our source says “There was nothing to drink except beer, and nothing to eat but crisps and peanuts. No-one from the Guerrillas was there and the music consisted of ‘Oi Along The Watchtower’ and ‘Frankie Goes To Pot’ played on a loop tape. They didn’t even have ‘Aloha’. After a brief speech McBain turned the entertainment over to a small chap doing ‘beard aerobics’ followed by two geriatric barmaids who performed ‘psychedelic yoga’ to the music of Pink Floyd. There was a general air of bewilderment and a feeling of ‘Why are we here? What’s the point?’” Very much like this blog then...
If the blog were fully operational, which we stress it isn’t, we would no doubt be reporting on the private race between our Gal and John King to get their latest novels finished on schedule. JK is putting the final touches to his long-awaited Slaughterhouse Prayer while Gal is still locked away working on the We Still Kill origins book. As an inducement, Fat Col (for it is he) has offered to buy whoever finishes first “a slap-up meal, steak, chips, eggs, breast of pigeon, a bit of gammon, black pudding, the works...” Hmm, as Colin knows full well that John is a swivel-eyed vegan we suspect he has only made this offer to send the great man into such a paddy he won’t be able concentrate on his writing. A risky strategy, for King might well respond by sending his enforcer, Two-Ton Tony Madras after Col on his mobility scooter. To keep the peace, we will quickly plug JK’s Facebook fan page. PS If John wins the race, we’ll eat his dinner! Although maybe not the sprouts.
Fat Col also reports that we have now received as many as several requests to release a collectors’ compilation of the very earliest unavailable Gonads songs. People are particularly keen on hearing the legendary ‘Ripper’s Delight’, ‘Lights Out In Charlton’, ‘Whelks’, ‘Red Army’ and ‘Clouds’ – of which only the first two were ever released back in the day. When this blog returns for real, we’ll deal with the matter with our usual sense of urgency.
Sandie West, that zany ball of Old Hollywood grit (not rhyming slang, how dare you suggest otherwise?) has demanded that we plug the LA Punk Film Festival because of “your massive West Coast readership”. She goes on: “We have Adam Ant movie, Blue Back Hussar, Billy Bones, Scumbag, and brand new feature film Bomb City.” The event on 30th March will have “special guests from the casts of all the movies, including Angelo Moore, Fishbone, Don Bolles, The Germs, and DH Peligro of the Dead Kennedys.” Bomb City opens in the UK very soon. It’s a critically acclaimed US American crime film, written and directed by Jameson Brooks, based on the murder of punk teenager Brian Deneke. The homicide revealed the cultural clash between the local jocks and punks in Amarillo, Texas.
Before we go, this is the FB home of fiction fanzine Verbal. Verbal consists of short stories, interviews, lyrics, poetry, cut-ups, journalism, reviews and letters. They publish original material by exciting new writers, and as such Verbal offers an alternative to a narrow-minded, elitist mainstream. As the zine says: ‘The stories that are told should not be decided by accountants. Neither should they be censored according to the latest whims of the thought police. Fiction matters.’ Matters? Where would we be without it? It’s the very life blood of this blog! Which we can’t emphasise enough is not back and may not be for some time. You ain’t seen us, roight? –
March 19. This blog is still on a break but continues “in safe mode” to fool our detractors... in actual news, Minneapolis Oi band Empire Down have released their debut self-titled ep via Oi! The Boat Records; Matt Henson of NOi!se does guest vocals on their track ‘Bastards For The Butcher’... the brilliant Blades UK are finally bringing out their debut ep as a download and are looking for a label to produce physical copies of the single... and we hear that long-time Gonads contributor Leah McCaffrey is releasing her first official single in this Summer...
In virtual news, the Cockney Rejects have failed to respond to Fat Col’s call for a campaign to erect a statue of Micky Geggus on the site of the old Bridge House in Canning Town, but the Oi! Organising Committee will contact the band directly in order to force a decision on the issue...
There was a strong and enthusiastic turn-out for yesterday’s song-writing and rehearsal session for the PM’s long-awaited solo e.p. In attendance were a producer, a cameraman and several top drawer Oi musicians plus a string section consisting of an alcoholic fiddler, a cross-eyed cellist and barmaid who enjoys a good strum. The only one not to show was the PM himself as El Tel had been called away on “vital Jolly Prankster business” and had neglected to tell anyone else. When questioned, an irate PM blamed those “wretches” who had actually turned up for not confirming. “Prankster business always comes first,” he said sternly, adding “Anyway, I was wossname.” Quite. While we’re here, the next Prankster convention, the St George’s weekender, will be staged in that Sussex place. See your Tyler for details.
March 18. We’re back, briefly, with the exciting news that fearless US comic Shayna Ross – known as “the punk rock Joan Rivers” – will be in the UK for this first time doing shows after Easter. If you love stand-up comedy with proper bite, Shayna is the score to beat...
Whispers: we hear that the new Madball album, produced by Tim Armstrong, is an absolute stormer... Louise Distras has nearly finished recording her second album in San Francisco; our mole in the studio tells us that the songs are even better than her debut LP and could well be “the most significant punk rock release of the decade”... Argy Bargy are in the process of writing a brand new album...
Scurrilous gossip: word reaches us that the Crows recent show at the London 100 Club may have caused problems for Chelsea Dom and his child-bride Mandy after a number of so-called “Dom groupies” rushed the stage to try and touch the great man’s beer gut. Our spy reports: “These young nubiles wanted a piece of Dom. From what I could tell, the in-thing is to rub his Buddha-like belly. I’d never seen anything like it. Mandy did not look happy.” Blimey. But, our source continues: “Some of the girls seemed to be calling him Ron which led cynics in the audience to claim they were actually paid extras supplied by an agency rather than actual fans”. The very idea!
Noos: Bad Manners and Max Splodge play ULU (University of London Union) on 4th May... Jeff ‘Stinky’ Turner has teamed up with Sulo from The Crunch in a side-project band called The New Deal... The new Yellow Stitches LP, Good Times Violent Crimes is out now on coloured Vinyl from Arrest Records...
Book Worm: Our literary correspondent Rula Mansford recommends two works of fiction. 1) The Lazarus Curiosity by Colin Edmonds – a steampunk extravaganza featuring a satanic portrait painter,a severed arm, and deadly gas primed to wipe out the Government... clearly a job for Music Hall Steampunk illusionists and crime-busters Michael Magister and his feisty sidekick Phoebe Le Breton. Edmonds’s second Victorian detective novel is pickled in malevolence, treachery and tragedy. This is a TV series waiting to happen. 2) Glory Boys by Jim Iron and John Steel. Mod pulp fiction set in 1979. As the Mod renewal hits London, a new breed of modernists indulge in a glorious haze of pills, music, sex, gang violence and scooter fumes. This is the best youth cult pulp fiction since the 70s.
March 11. This blog remains closed but we felt compelled to report on big developments inside the Punk Rock Curry Club. It seems that several regulars were outraged by Lee Wilson moaning about the Club in the pages of Vive Le Rock. And so an Extraordinary General Meeting was called for yesterday, where a motion to expel Wilson from the PRCC was vigorously debated. Some argued that a temporary suspension would suffice, others that permanent exclusion was called for. The meeting, near Stamford Bridge, was even gate-crashed by Fat Col at one point who said emphatically that “Lee has broken the unwritten rule that what happens in the curry club must stay in the curry club!” (Col is the club’s most passionate supporter, despite never having attended a gathering... or indeed ever being invited to). In the end, it took the guru of Oi, Steve Whale to reach the final decision. Guided, it is rumoured, by private consultations with club stalwarts Judge Shed and absentee chairman Fatty Lol, Whaley applied the wisdom of Solomon to the matter and reached a very fair conclusion. To cheers and spontaneous applause, Steve told the EGM: “The fine for Lee Wilson’s treacherous moaning about this club is that he must buy the first round of beers at the next meeting! He must also endure the legendary ring-stinger ‘Curry Hell’ dish which no member has been able to finish since Ronnie Rouman back in the 80s.” He went on: “And as Lee has failed to arrange a North London meet, the Easter curry club will be at London Bridge – to stop him being old and angry! If Lee Wilson agrees to this, and guarantees that in future he will obey club rules, then I believe this to be a fair and just punishment.” So mote it be.
March 1st. The Gonads, and consequently this blog, are on a break. We will be seeing other people...