Saturday, August 18, 2007



What can you say about The Damned that has never been said before? After 30 odd, (in so many meanings of the word), years of punk rock mayhem, these old men, creators of this country`s first punk rock single/album, pervayers of gothic psychodelia and chart topping disturbances, (lets not forget), returned to Falmouth after last year`s rammed gig to do it all again.
Having a train named after him hasn`t slowed Captain Sensible down one bit, in fact none of the band seem to understand the concept of aging at all. Full of youthful energy that belies their combined age of 3042, The Damned were on top form tonight, (with particular worthy mentions to Dave Vanian for his excellent vocals which were notably better than last year and obviously the sound guy), and this was an invigorated band playing to a fanclub full of true fanatics.
The room was quickly stiffling with sweat as the majority of the audience went mental in a massive mosh from the first (phantom) chord of the captain`s guitar.
It was a glorious performance.
The Damned played all the obviously crowd pleasing hits, Eloise, Smash it up, New Rose, Neat Neat Neat etc, and then slipped in a fantastic version of Ignite and an equally cool (in my opinion) cover of Love`s Alone Again Or. What some people seem to miss about The Damned is that they have a great love of the 60`s psychodelia and acid fringed classics and the melodrama that surrounds performing this sort of music. They aren`t just an old punk band that didn`t know when to give up, ("it must be blind stupidity" as the legendary Rat Scabies once suggested), and mixed heavily with the brain numbing energy of the punk anthems, the band clearly enjoy this extra dimension to their sound.
Humour is also never far from the heels of The Damned and when `sing-a-long-a-captain` starts the audience lap it up with cheesy grins all over the place.
The band give a 100% and so do the audience, so that when you finally wander out of the Pavilions with your ears still ringing and sweat dripping from your hair, you feel completely elated and drained at the same time.
The Damned are a truely great band.

From Penzance they came, from the ashes of the town`s first punk band (The Cramp), from Russia with lo... (hang on, that`s not right). Ahh yes, The Surgeons - led by that ex-Cramp (Penzance version), Pete Kliskey on guitar and vocals have been around since 1980. Although officially sleeping since 1984 due to mental illness and errands that needed running, the band did reform recently for a punk festival in June and obviously enjoyed themselves enough to take on a few more dates including tonight.
With drumming from the unlikely named Jimmy Jewell and his brother Mike Kliskey on the bass, Pete led the band through a powerful and professional set of punk material that would easily stand up against anything by the The Clash/Pistols.
Claiming to be influenced easily, but more specifically by Joe Strummer, George Orwell and Ray Mears shows the mature sense of humour that we`re dealing with when it comes to The Surgeons, but when it comes to the music, you can bet they mean it maaan!
With the state of the NHS these days, the need to see The Surgeons asap is more important than ever before!


Four girls? In a band? Supporting those depraved old punk rockers The Damned? Mmmmm?
Falmouth`s own punk rock chicks came storming onto the Pavilion stage prepared to show how their new singer (of only two weeks), Kelly, had been assimilated into their ranks. And what a performance they gave - the rumbling floor toms of Michelle`s drumming and the stand up bass from Louise pounded out a jungle rythmn that instantly recalled the wild punk style of garage rock heroes The Cramps at their best. Mich`s distorted lead guitar washed over the rythmn section and Kelly was off and running into the first number.
With a way too short set of all their own material, The Eyelids started to draw a bigger and more enthusiastic crowd into the venue as they progressed. The band even got an encore and cries of "More!" when they departed, (which isn`t too bad for the first support band at any gig).
Admitting influences such as Sleater-Kinney, PJ Harvey, The Clash and the afore-mentioned Cramps is no bad thing in my books as a young band, but being able to be compared with this disperate crowd, The Eyelids are head and shoulders above their local competition.
A stunning performance from a band that not only have great taste, but great ability and clearly a great future.
(All photos by Lord Itchfield)


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