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999 : '77 punk rock héroes telling their Ufe story \T \A V / I II ^B>-a» JI . TOWN: more than just a bañó 'CAY SKINHEAD GROUP: what's this ? THE BUSNESS : we fought the lawancl A : post communism punk rock •^•••"•^•Í"'^">"«B~'™I"I"MI-™Í«^"¿~ •""•""•""•

)jD/as a massive record review sectíon and more...{ B • •


ok, our ioth ¡ssue ¡s now finally in your hands. we're not that rich to offer ya a free single or so to celébrate this, but the content is again worth the whíle if i say so myself. 999 are one of the few punk rock bands coming out of 1977 that never splít up and still know how to entertain their audiences in 1994. They'll be proving that once again when they play Belgium on saturday 5th November '94 with The Harries, voíd section and PKRK supporting. write us for more info (stamp/iRC please). The varukers had their deal of success in the early 80s and are trying to make a come-back. This interview will hopefully help them on their way up again. The cay Skinrtead Group ís another aspect of the cult and we thought they deserve some space to explain what they're all about. Mamón rown show that playing ska/reggae and using your brains at the same time go perfectly together. The members ofzonaA nave been ¡nvolved in punk since the late 70s and are only now slowly getting noticed ¡n the rest of Europe which is a shame as they can compete with any other band when ¡t comes to playing catchy punk rock. Finally there's a lengthy article on The Business concert Skoink organised last january. HOW a dream became a nightmare speaking of The Business, they will be playing again ¡n Belgium on saturday lOth september at a big punk all-dayer with also on the bilí Proud City Fathers, Red Alert, The Lurkers, UK subs and one more really big ñame, ifs all taking place at 'Hof-TerLOO' ¡n Antwerpen. send an IRC to Skoink for full details.

one of the main reasons this issue ¡s late, is that we've been organising gigs on a regular basis. in 1994 we already put on Anti-Heros, The Business and cock Sparrer, all three were a great success and apart from both aforementioned gigs, there's plenty more to come, watch this space! we've been really swamped with promo records to review. sorry to the labels & bands whose stuff hasnt been mentioned this time. They will all be ¡ncluded ¡n the next issue whích will be out this summer featuring interviews with The Business, Anti-Heros, etc. until then, take care. Current plavlíst CHELSEA : The Alternative CD DISTORTED TRUTH : Counterfelt Culture LP THE WRETCHED ONES : S/t CD

THUMPER : Another oay M-CD P.C.F. : Looking TO The Left 7" COCK SPARRER : Cuilty AS charged CD SILLY ENCORES : Water PiStOl RiOt CD

PRINCE BUSTER : Fabulous Greatest Hits CD THE BUSINESS : anything PUBLIC TOYS : Tote Helden 7" Only available here! pfficial 1994 tour posters (ultra big size) of the cock Sparrer reunión shows ¡n Europe. send BF 200 (Belgium) - DM 10/S6 (Europe) - $8 (rest of the world) to Johan van Mieghem, Postbus 41,9550 Herzele, Belgium and you can feel a little less miserable for having missed the great come-back of the masters of street punk!

SKOINK #1 (in Dutch) is still available : Sham 69, Anti-Racist Action, The Bips, Toy Dolls, Stiv Bators, Les Frelons, Stiff Little Fingers, Baby Snakes, S.H.A.R.P., Alptraum GmbH, etc... SKOINK #8 still available : Another Man's Poison, The Skunks, Blechreiz, One Night Stand, The Guttersnipes, The Bruisers, The New Apollo 7, etc... SKOINK #9 still available : The Magnificent, The Scofflaws, Headwound, Red Letter Day, Johnny Peebucks & The Swingin' Utters, Potsdam Ska Festival, Incógnito Records, Headache Records, etc...

Súbscription Rotes Four issues .- Belgium : BF 200 Europe : DM 14/$8 Rest Of The World : $12 Well-hidden cash or International Money Order payable to Johan Van Mieghem, Postbus 41, 9550 Herzele, Belgium. No cheques!!!

Address Johan Van Mieghem Postbus 41 9550 Belgium

Herzele

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are more happy with it. It's the first álbum that the band has been able to do, that when we walked out the studio we said "oh yeah we like thati". So that's quite important. It took us 17 years to get there What happens is, (Legendary '76 Punk-Rock band). when you get a record out and you Formed Sunday 5th December have a bit of success like we 1976 by two school friends, had in the early days - we Nick Cash (lead vocals/ did our first record "I'm guitar) and Guy Days {vocals/ Alive" on our own record lead guitar) and naming them- label - you get a bit of selves The Dials, 48 Hours freedom and then that's taken and The Fanatics, the ñame away from you. They say you 999 was chosen in time for can have this amount of money the band, completed by bas- and then you have to go into sist Jon Watson and drummer the studio and do what they Pablo Labritain, to make say - it looses it. their debut gig at the Nor- Any particular reason for thampton Cricket Club on 22nd choosing Anagram Records ? January 1977. Cash, under his real ñame They phoned me up and said Keith Lucas, had been a would you like to make an álbum ? They said we'll give member of Kilburn & The High you certain amount of money Roads and used his contacts and awon't interfere at all, to get 999 gigs on the thrivyou can pick the studio, you ing London Pub scene. The can rehearse, won't send Nashville, Hope & Anchor, Red anybody down we there. So we Cow, the Vortex and the Roxy said, give us the money and all played host to the High then we started it. Energy Punk Pop of the band and they quickly built up a Do they have a good distribufollowing known as ' The Crew' tion ? that would pack out every 999 This is a difficult thing. concert. Hopefully, but at the same With 13 singles, 11 albums, time you just don't know. I over 70 London gigs, 7 UK don't know if it's distributtours, 10 US tours and 11 ed in Belgium ya know. What European tours under their you have to do is make the belts, 999 are still alive & record and put it out. It's kicking in 1994. The band's like a concert. If you make a still together in the origi- concert, you can advertise it nal line-up apart from bas- and then you hope that people sist Jon Watson who was re- come. You just put a record placed in 1986 by Danny out and you hope that people Plamer and subsequently by buy it. When we had our first Lurkers vocalist/bassist record out in Britain, we Arturo Bassick in 1991. didn't advertise it at all, This interview is the result but everyone said ' gimrne one, of a long talk between Johan gimme one'. That's quite nice and Nick Cash before 999 hit 'eos if you go & advertise the stage at the Belgian Punk something, it's like PepsiRock Explosión last November. Cola. People are sick of adTell us something about the vertising things. This is the best advertisement we can get new álbum 'You Us l€' . There's 15 tracks on it and tonight 'eos we'll play songs it was recorded in London in of it, and people hear that a place called Alaska Studios and then they'11 like that. where we first started to re- Is it available on both vinyl hearse as a band in the early and CD ? days. We rehearsed a lot of It's available on CD and the songs and recorded thetn hopefully it's gonna be just straight down. We didn't available on plástic as well do a lot of overdubs and 'eos I haven't got a CDstuff on it and we produced player (ha ha) and I guess a it entirely ourselves. So we lot of our fans still have

record players. They can't afford CDs, but that's another question. The first two 999 albums have recently been reissued on CD by Dojo. Does this mean there's a renewed interest in your oíd stuff ? There's a big demand for our oíd stuff 'eos what actually happens is that people listen to music and then they make their choice. Our records are around and then older people play it to their brothers, sisters & friends and they say 'hang on, we like this, there's something here for us' . So they go & buy it. I think our songs have lasted well. What we say today stands as good as when we said it then, we just changed it a bit (ha ha). People like it and we can play all over the world. People want us to go play in Argentina and they got the records there. Are they selling well ? It's funny, the oíd records just keep selling. And they keep putting them out as well, and the only nuisance is people don't know which is which. We've got a new álbum out and now we want to say, it's all ours, it's all original material and this is where it starts again for 999. It's quite hard to get that over ' eos you have to come out & play and tell people. You are one of the few early punk bands that never split up. Is there a secret behind that ? We never split up indeed.

Watch out for 999's new álbum

OUT NOW!! on Anagram Records (C.D. GRAM 71)

- all

New Material ! ! ! ! ! !


The only thing that has happened is-, we changad bass players twice. We now have Arturo from The Lurkers in. Some times we were quieter than others, but we always kept going. What was the main motivation to keep going on all those years ? It's still good fun to come & play places like this here in Belgium in the middle of nowhere. It's still great and I hear some good stories like tonight they said on the local radio station 2000 skinheads are coming here. I was speaking to a young man who works behind the bar here and he said that some of the people are scared.

A lot of people work in Brussels and they commute in and they got very nice big houses & cars and they don't understand why this is coming to their community. So they say to their sons 'stay in!' and some of them are pushing things behind the door to stop people coming in. They are scared and I think that's great. If it shakes them up because of nothing, I'm gíad. We get accused of a lot of things but when you actually see what we do, it's just good. It's good that there's a concert here tonight that's a bit different, it's good that there's new music here, it's great that there's people from the área that are into this music. Not just into 999, they're into a

way-of-life, something a bit different, something that challenges this. And I'd probably have more of an interesting conversation with the people here tonight than you could have with these people about what kind of cars they've got, how they do their household, what fridge they've got and stuff like that. It challenges that and I think that' s why we kept going. We're not just about buying a CD-player and sitting there being told 'this is good music' and that's the end of it. A lot of bands become like that over the years but not 999. The people know it and it's always interesting.

You had quite a few singles that ended up in the charts. Does that mean you earned a lot of money at that time ? Sometimes it was very good. It was more than you could imagine. They used to give you cheques for a lot of money and you'd walk out the door sotnetimes and you'd be very rich. You could make a party for about three months and that was good. It's quite expensive having a threemonth party. We earned money, but we've also nearly been bankrupt. The tax man carne after us, paying that off. We've been ripped off on some of the things on the management side but never really on concerts, only once or twice. The people we deal with are always very good.

Did you e ver appear on Top Of The Pops ? No, we were going to but then there was an engineer strike. Then the next week the strike was off and they said, send us the text to the song ('Homicida' , ed.) and they said we can't have you talking about murder and terrible things. That's it, so they stopped us going on there and they wouldn't play the record on the radio. I don't know why they were scared. I said, look you get American TV programmes like Kojak or Homicida In The Bronx in which they kill 20 people on film and they show it, and you won't show 999 just playing music. Why ? There's no murder on that. They're scared of us because it threatens them. It's like here, people are scared and I don't know why because we wouldn't hurt them. I mean we're not fascist and we're anti-violence. We're propeople, pro-world. Nick Cash isn't your . real ñame. What's the story behind that ? It seemed like a good ñame at the time. In England, to nick cash means to steal money and I thought it was a good ñame. Everybody had ñames at the time, Arturo's got one, Pablo as well.,. It's more fun to cali yourself by that than by your real ñame and it also means throwing your oíd ñame away and start something new. You were playing around before the punk explosión with Kilburn & The High Roads. Do you think you have been an influential band or did you change your music when the whole punk thing happened ? I did play with lan Dury in the early 70s and we used to have people like Malcolm McLaren & Johnny Rotten standing in the audience. That was quite an influential band really. Madness copied it with the whole ska thing. It was like jazz, rock & punk all rolled up. I had a lot of arguments with lan Dury and split up with him. In about 1975 myself and Guy Days (lead guitarist) wrote a series of songs like "I'm Alive" & "Emergency" and we took them to record companies - this is before punk actually happened. We said we have these great songs here and we played it to United Artists, EMI, all the big ñames really


They said this is horrible, we don't like ±t. Then we got a bass player & drummer and we played a gig just at the time that punk was happening and all the record companies that didn't like it before said we love it! We said, we already played you those songs, but then it was in. People sometimes accuse 999 of starting after The Clash or the Pistols or something like that, but we never listened to that because we knew where we carne from and what we were. And also, when you speak to all the kids who know the music like yourself, they know, so... We were also one of the first bands to tour America and people said to us, you can't tour America, that's selling out, you should stay in England, it's an English thing. I said, that's fucking crap. Wherever we go & play, that's where our music wilí be. We went to America because we felt when there's an audience to play to, that's great. We asked the people in England, do you think it's bad that we've gone to America ' eos in the papers they said we had sold out. They said, fuck if I could go I would go, so good luck. After a while that sort of criticizing died off and we played all over. What were your ambitions when you first started and did you succeed in reaching those goals ? I think what we tried to do is just play our music and get slowly better. We've been going an awful long time and we feel the happiest at the moment 'eos we just made a good record that we all like. So we've achieved a goal in a wa'y of doing something in our own control after 17 years. The first couple of albums were good and then we felt it went off a bit and now we feel it is good for the ninetees. It's not just retrogressive. The thing is, we've always kept ahead of what was happening a bit. Although we started in 1977, played our gigs

then and carne out of that, we've always sort of developed a bit and people know that. If we had stayed puré 1977, I don't think we would have survived. We got a modern approach with the oíd thing, otherwise it'd become a parody. Though we still enjoy to play songs from that time because there's nothing like it. We'll play a couple tonight and they'11 go mad ya know.

Your very first gig took place at the Northampton Cricket Club in January 1977. Do you have any special memories from that gig ? Yes, I do have a special memory from the gig. We played with a band there called STRETCH, sort of a serious heavy metal/rock type band. They had a very big P.A. and we had two little speakers, but we asked them to borrow their big P.A. They said, no way and it was a very big The 'Face To Face' LP hasn't place so we had to set up our been received too well. Was it an attempt to reach a little stuff. The kids knew a wider audience and make the bit about us and they carne in and we played with this litband more commercial ? I think we tried it at the tle P.A. in this huge place. time. We felt the fast type The kids went mad and when stuff seemed a bit dated 'eos the other band carne out, they we had done that. I recently walked away. The story of listened to it for the first that is, it doesn't matter time in about 6 years and I how big the P.A. is or whatput it next to the new one ever you've got, it's the and ' You Us It' sounded so audience and the spirit you much better. Thank God for put over that decides. Another nice thing about that that. is that in January we go back So do you regret having put to Northampton to play the it out then ? same place again. We've alNo, I've never regret it. You ways had the policy that if can only do what you do at we got equipment and we can the time. We tried as hard as help out a young band that is we can in anything we' ve done with us, they can use the PA and that's what we're proud & lights 'eos we know what it of. We're not the best musi- felt like to be put down and cians in the world, but what it's not worth going through we've managed to do is get life. If someone is better our own place and it's not a than you and they blow you bad place to be. People still off, that's good, we don't come & talk to you, they're mind. Give everybody a interesting, the music still chance! That' s one of the goes on, there's new bands & good things about punk. people here tonight. We get older people and younger ones We all have this great image and that's what it's all about 1977. Was it really all that exciting or is the image about for us. overdone ?


No, it was really exciting. It was -incredible, the most fun you could ever have. The gigs were great, the music was fantastic. Some of the shows were so wild and the atmosphere so energetic. We could go to London and play, to Berlin, Los Angeles, Yugoslavia and the same thing happened. I'm so glad I lived to go through that and to be part of that. It's great 'eos you can see all the world and in a lot of jobs you don't do that. So that's what the spirit of '77 was all about ? Yeah, and getting rid of prejudices as well. Everybody said like you can't make a record, you're just a little nothing band. You can't get on stage and jump around, you got to be in a band for 20 years before you can start moving around like that.. We just went "no, you haven't, fuck off, here is the record, the kids were there, fuck you". It was one of the times in the music industry that people had to turn around and listen to what people had to say. And it didn't apply to just music, but also to film & politics, to absolutely everything. It gave you a fresh approach to look at thing differently. Like in those days we did 56 shows in America and in Los Angeles we played to 10,000 people just on the word of mouth. Do you have any songs which capture a certain feeling that was around at that time. Ñasty Ñasty maybe? Yes that was an anti-violence song really. When you put those things on, something is captured there. I've listened to some blues records and when I was in America I went to see people like Muddy Waters and I thought although it's completely different music, there's something in it that lifts you in a certain way. I think that our music has done that for people, something which more mainstream stuff doesn't do. I don't think there's something like typxcal 999 lyrics Do you agree ? What we do in lyrics is, we don't talk about certain things directly. We sort of

paint pictures and they're written in such a way that's it's a bit like poetry. It makes you imagine more. We use the lyrics in an atmosphere with the music to push it over the audience and when it works with the live audience, they can see what way we're going and what is happening. You get a reaction between the two and the lyrics leave it free to interpret things. So there's no particular message you want to get across ? Not really. The only thing we do is talk about personal freedom and stuff like that. We haven't done any really direct songs. Arturo from The Lurkers is now also in the band. How did that come about ?

Do you like The Lurkers musically ? Not really (ha ha) . I like 'Shadow' and 'New Quitar In Town' and a couple of things they've done, but everybody likes that. At the moment there's enough room for both bands to play enough gigs. I don't think he's gonna say, that's it, no more Lurkers 'eos I'm in 999, that's not the question. He likes doing this, so he gives a good contribution. There's a good relation between both bands, especially in the bar. 'Feeling Alright With The Crew' is dedicated to your loyal f ollowers. Was there something like a 999 army, just like the Sham army ? It was like the Southall crew. Lots of kids from there carne to see us but we didn't write it just for them, it was for everybody together. They inspired us ? '!T ^fffflrr-rSr.n * ¡ to do it. The songs is still relevant wherever we play. Speaking of Sham 69, their shows were ruined by violence. What was it due to in your opinión ? That's a difficult question. We managed to avoid it. If that happens at one of our concerts, I stop the concert and say, we're here for the music aren't we people. Everybody would go yeah! and fortunately that worked for us. We had a couple of nasty incidents. When we were in Los Angeles once, a lot of kids were coming on stage. They threw He was managed by the same them out and wouldn't let people than us when he was in them back in. Some of them a band called PINPOINT. We had guns and they started got to know him and had a few shooting the door. But that beers with him which is im- was only once. possible not to do with Arturo. We stayed friends Did it prove 'If The Kids Are ever since and as the oíd United' is impossible ? bass player didn't really It's not impossible. One or work out, he offered to join two of those bands caught us. Actually he works out certain fascist things and really good because he helped they should've put it down. us a lot on this new álbum. We've always made that totalHe plays the bass parts and ly clear, so nobody really does the backing vocals. He has to ask us. I suppose helped us with the ar- we've been lucky really. rangements and said, look What do you think of Sham 69 this is getting a bit too in 1993 ? long, let's cut it in half, We played with them and they and stuff like that. Let's were very disappointing. They make it from 6 minutes into had all these new songs that 2. He didn't try to make it they wanted to play plus two like The Lurkers in any way, girl sax players and new he's clever to do that. musicians.


But ,all the audience wanted to hear was ' If The Kids', so to me it didn't really work. It's very hard to speak to Jimmy Pursey, he just talks about himself all the time. I'm not putting the bloke down, but I've tried to speak to him twice and I gave up. What was your relationship with the other bands in '77 ? All good really except with Bob Geldof & The Boomtown Rats. They didn't like us and when we played we sometimes dressed up in bright fluorescent colours and Guy had dyed blond hair & white shoes. We looked quite different at the time. We played a gig with them once and as we walked in they started going ' faggots' and stuff like that. Then Bob Geldof carne onto me and said 'Nick, how come you're so big in Zurich' - I guess they had just played Switzerland. A lot of people were there, it was like a televisión studio and I said 'Bob, how come you're so big in England' and he wouldn't speak to me again after that. I said to him a couple of times ' come on, it was only a bloody joke, let's shake hands' , but he wouldn't have i t.

Campino. Just recently I fashion shows in Paris and found a photograph of me the punk couture sort of playing outside and I think comes back again. I have althat Campino is in it. That's ways been interested in the the good thing about punk, fashion type aspect of it. it's a bit of a swop-over. When we were in Kilburn & The Now some Toten Hosen fans High Roads we used to go down like 999, but I don't think to Malcolm McLaren's shop the 999 fans like Toten Hosen which was called Let It Rock before he did the Sex Pisbut never mind (ha ha). tols. We used to get our You toured the USA quite a clothes there. Extravagant few times. What are the best leather jackets, nice silk memories you have from those suits and a kind of Doc visits ? Martens astronaut boots. Really good. We're trying to get back now that we have I always thought Richard Hell this new record out. We can was McLaren's biggest inspionly play there once every 3 ration to créate the Pistols' years. Los Angeles is our look though ? biggest territory in America I'm not sure about that realand our crowds are much big- ly. We had our own idea of ger in L.A. than in London. what we liked and we were goIt's 'a bit difficult for us ing that way anyway. We had to go because we have to go short hair, used to wear in front of the State Depart- trousers that weren't fiares, ment to be ruled that we are black & white shoes and used suitable and will not corrupt to buy clothes that were the American youth. With us cheap as well as expensive. they've got a bit of a dif- It was a very personal exficult Job because when 999 pression and a very English were out there, we saw a lot thing. You got certain asof poverty & denigration in . pects of what Richard Hell L.A. and we tried to help the did but that was a later sort people there. We organised a of thing really. concert in L.A. to raise mon- Johnny Thunders was involved ey to open school sports with Richard Hell and they facilities during summer were sharp dressers from New You have good contacts with vacations so that kids would York. They would come over to and get leather Die Toten Hosen. How do you have something to do. We got England explain their mass success this school open and money trousers here and Chelsea playing quite aggressive/ went into it. The maire of boots there. So you got L.A. got to hear of it. He Richard Hell wearing Chelsea punky music ? Well, Arturo knows them. Per- thought it was incredible, boots and going back to NY sonally I'm not really into these English people who come and people started picking up their music or what they do, over here and actual ly do on it over there. It was all crossing over very it's not my cup of tea. something to help our kids. like He carne down to the concert quick. That's what it's all Having said that, I always like exchanging things and and there was a big thing in about to me, sharing ideas they gave us a bit of a break the papers and he said 'just and doing things. You could playing with them in Germany. because you're not Frank go to Berlin and the look's a They made a cover of 'Nasty Sinatra giving away 10 mil- bit different to what we did Nasty' The ni ce story about lion pounds to charity and then in Kings Road. It's good that is that many years ago you guys have done as much that people wear different to express them999 were playing in a club in with your money as any of the clothes big stars have done, I'm gonselves. The great thing about Dusseldorf called ' The Ratinger Hof and the guys na give 999 a 999 day' . The punk was, it wasn't like you from Toten Hosen couldn't day before we had to leave it had to have thousands of come inside because they were was Olivia Newton John day pounds to go out & do it. The clothes that Johnny so young. Campino (the Toten and the day after somebody best Hosen singer) was like 15 and else. It was all in the Rotten and all those people standing outside. I heard papers and we got certificáis wore, weren't the stuff that that there were some young on the walls of the city of McLaren made for a lot of money but the stuff that they kids outside waiting to come L.A. in but they wouldn' t let them So today what has the punk invented themselves. It meant that for the first time kids in. I said, let them in, but wave achieved ? were free from what the idea they couldn't as they were It achieved quite a lot. It of a fashion was. Some people too young. So after the con- blew away a lot of the oíd started wearing things that cert I took a little ampli- crap to start looking at fier & a guitar. I went out- things differently. It made a we were wearing and they making it into side and said, this is for difference to people's lives started and copying the you people who couldn't come in a way. It has perhaps been fashions colours. And the thing is in, and played 'Nasty Nasty' a bigger influence than peoand ' Emergency' . One of those ple would care to admit. Now that people still remember people in the audience was they just put on the big all those things and talk to us about them today.


When did you guys get together ? The band was formed in May of 1984 by Konyk - vocals, Ledo - guitar (both ex-PARADOX), Brano - bass, Sveto - guitar and Ozi - drums (both ex EXTIP). Paradox and Ex-Tip were the first Slovak punk bands, both formed in 1980. We played our first gig in Bratislava in July which was the only place punk bands could play at that time. In 84-85 we did about 10 gigs including a 'big' one supporting the well-known Czech new wave band ABRAXAS. In '85 Slovak TV made a 20-minute film about us, but it got forbidden by the censorship as 'it was not suitable for social ist youth' . In '86 the secret state pólice took our passports to prevent us from playing at the Jarocin Festival in Poland. We were marked like ' f aulty band' by our institutor and all gigs were cancelled. We were officially prohibited from playing and members of the band got labelled as fascists. So we did only one gig that year under the false ñame of 'Z.A.'. We recorded'also our first demo - poor sound quality as it was done in our rehearsal room. We reached the no. 105 spot in 'Gold Nightingale', the Czechoslovakian pop charts. All votes had be en sent by the bassist and me. If the rest of the band had done the same, we could've been in the Top-50 which would've been even funnier.

In 1987 the 'perestroika spirit' slowly hit CSSR as well, so we could start playing again. But we had to pass through exams without which bands can't play. Those were exams in front of a Jury. We played three songs which were selected by the jury and we had to explain the lyrics. After that the jury (the average age was about 60) decided whether the group is suited to play officially. We haven't passed the last 3 years, but in '87 the jury was a bit younger and included also two women. They liked us 'eos we are very nice & good looking and gave us the exams (the lowest class of course). But we could play in autumn of that year on 'Devils Wheel' which was a big festival in front of 3000 people. We also did our first big gig in Prague at the 'Rockfest' festival. We also did one song for the movie 'Just One Day' and during the recording sessions we recorded in only half an hour 9 more songs which got spread by ourselves as a demo tape. In January 1988 Sveto left the band and later that year he reformed EX-TIP. We replaced him with a new temporary member - Elvis, an accordion player. In January 1990 there's a big break following several disputes : Brano and Ozi leave the band and form pop-punk outfit SLOBODNA EUROPA together with Sveto. So we recruited the rhythm section

of Ex-Tip : Miki - bass and Fesak - drums. With this line-up we recorded our first álbum POTOPA released by the state record company OPUS. It was recorded and mixed in two weeks in the best studio of Slovakia. We also shot 3 more videos for the TV programme ZONA D. In January 1991 we supported ÜK Subs in Vienna which was the faréwell gig for Miki and Fesak. The new rhythm section then became Lump (Ledo's brother) - bass and Miko drums. Both played in a '77 punk band called LORD ALEX. In January 1992 we did a recording session for ZONA D (5 songs). Four have been released as an EP on Incógnito Records and one on the 'Oi! It's A World League' compilation. In January 1993 we became very disappointed with our manager, so we asked Petr Ruzicka, an oíd punk organizer from Czech, to help us out. He accepted and we recorded our second álbum for his label followed by 11 gigs all across Czechoslovakia. What does ZONA A mean ? Ledo : Originally we were called ANTI-ZONA, but it was impossible to use the word 'anti' at that time. It was forbidden by our institutor. We wanted to express our stance against the ruling regime. So we changed it into Zona A (Zone of Anarchy) Konyk : Also because we don't want to get involved with left-wing fascists who stole this symbol for themselves.


What jwas the reason for starting the band ? Konyk : We had nothing to do and we wanted to play revolting music. It was really great fun back then, all band members lived in the same block of fíats. The bassist on the second floor, Ledo and me on the first, the drummer on the groundfloor and we practiced in the basement! On your first álbum you thank The Boys, Vibrators, Sham 69, The Clash, etc. Does this mean you consider yourselves a '77 punk rock band ? What does the spirit of '77 mean to you ? Ledo : Yes, we consider ourselves a '77 punk band even if our music is not exactly that style. We are also listening to other punk and Oi! bands and a lot of new wave music from the late 7Os and early 80s, but we prefer the '77 style above all. Punk carne to Czechoslovakia a few years later, but Konyk and me already listened to punk music in 1978 through an Austrian broadcast station called 03. These were beautiful pioneer times! The spirit of '77 means to us - never betray it! How did the changes in Czechoslovakia affect people's lives. Can you explain to the readers what happened? Ledo : One big deception. Communists knew their days were counted and that's why they created a 'Velvet Revolution' . Some main ministers were sent away, but they had enough money to start from scratch. A new government was assigned and people were confident (I tnust confess, me too). Unfortunately they have used their power and money too soon. Since then it's all gotten worse. As to people's lives, the changes have affected it

dramatically. The rich became richer (cheaters, communists, etc.) and 'normal' people are poorer than ever. During the 'revolution' people were better and more considérate, but soon the envy - the main characteristic of Slovak people - deepened. Obviously the crime rate has risen and the current situation is depressing. Communists trying to camouflage themselves are omnipresent in the government and they lead the state straight to hell. Meanwhile parliament is discussing about insignificant things and about their salaries. It's disgusting. Individual parties are slowly included into the coalitions, so maybe we will have one big party again. Nationalism is a big fashion and democracy is a mess over here. Konyk : We had a good government from 1990 till the 1992 elections when the people were beaten by ex-commies and nationalists who promised a lot to the workers. But I still think that life today is far better than during the commies. Now we are free. Poor, but free and that really counts! What was the reason for writing the song 'Jozef Mengele'? What do you think of a man like Simón Wiesenthal who sacrifies his life to hunt down the nazis of World War Two ? Ledo : The reason for writing 'Where Is Jozef Mengele' was prosaic. At that time a lot of articles were devoted to him saying he was living in Paraguay. However we don't sympathize with Jozef Mengele at all. People like Simón Wiesenthal are really rare, but they haven't enough power & money to achieve their goals. His mission is nevertheless very generous. Have any of you already travelled outside Slovakia? If yes, what are the main differences w/ your country ? Konyk : It was shocking for us when we were in Switzerland that people don't lock up their houses & don't

keep guard over their shops. In Slovakia people steal everything. During the commies it was normal to steal something from state factories or state shops 'eos the state robbed people every day. Different also are the clean streets, common toilets and stations in Germany, Switzerland, Austria. A big difference is also the cost of living. My income is about 270 DEM a month. Beer costs 0.5 DEM in a shop, 1 DEM in a pub. Slovakia's music scene is very different as well. Clubs don't exist and gigs take place in cultural centres & start at 7 or 8 PM. In Czech it's more like in the West now. In former Eastern bloc countries there has been a witchhunt against communists. Do you feel this is fully justified ? Konyk : No, sadly there was no witchhunt at all. After the velvet revolution only one commie leader has gone to jail (he's been released meanwhile) and some 6 or 8 policemen. Can you believe that ?! And only in Czech. In Slovakia nobody got jailed. Today's government counts of nearly all ex-commies. The President is an ex-commie and so is the Prime Minister. How do you see events like 'Rock Against Communism' in e.g. England ? Konyk : I don't know anything about Rock Against Communism in England, but if somebody would organiza it here, we'll be there (I don't think so ed.) Communism is puré shit. It's fascism, nothing else. Believe me, I lived in it for 28 years! I heard the 'no fu ture' thing is still very in over there. Does this mean the punk scene has a certain arrears comparing to Western Europe or is their really no future for the kids ? Ledo : The no future thing is not too ' in' over here anymore. Maybe a few years ago. Generally there are less punks here than before. Hardcore and 6Os revival is the fashion now. Sure, punks are still punks & fashion punks always drop out. As for the kids' future, it depends on money too much. You reach nothing with an honest day job. The kids know that very well and experience it daily.


You have a track on the "Oi! It's-A World League" sampler. How did that come about ? You're the only punk rock band on it and yet the song has an Oi! feel to it. Was it a. one-off attempt or do you plan to continué in that direction ? Ledo : Konyk knows Marco from Klasse Kriminale and he liked our music, so that's why we are on that álbum. Sure, the song is Oi-ish. We like Oi! music but we won't go this way. The lyrics of that song are referring to the band's non-political stance and our stance against violence. Konyk : I'd be glad to include more Oi! oriented songs in our set but I can't write music, so it depends on Ledo.

musically, but sadly very patriot. I can understand Germán, English, French, etc. nationalists but Slovaks ? They have nothing to be proud of. We also have some ska skins and one band, POLEMIC. In Fragüe and the rest of Czech there are some fine older skins too. How have both of your albums been received ? Did they sell well ? Ledo : Different. The first one was rather expected. We were the first punk band in Slovakia with an LP out. During the first two months about 7,000 copies were sold which wasn't bad. Unfortunately the sound of the álbum is rather sterile. We've made it with people who had jiever

What do you think of today's Oi! scene ? Konyk : The Oi! scene here is a big fashion now, lots of young kids jumped on that bandwagon but sadly they are mostly stupid nationalists and fascists. There is just one skinhead band, KRATKY PROCES, who are very good

heard punk rock before. This is the reason for the diversity of opinions. Many oíd fans weren't satisfied and on the other hand we gained new fans - more 'normal' people. At the present time the LP is sold out (12,000 copies). I think it could have sold much more, but the company that

issued the álbum (OPUS) was (and is) absolutely unsuited. At that time it was the only record company in Slovakia. European distribution was impossible. Why ? Ask Opus. The second álbum was released in another period and it can be said, bought by a new generation of people. The sales are not bad. There are less copies of this 2nd álbum and only CDs & MCs (1000/3000 copies). It has been put out by our manager's label A.N.K. Records and he didn't want vinyl. We initially wanted to do it entirely ourselves, but we've found out that it's too expensive for us. Do you feel you've progressed with the second álbum ? Why is the European distribution so bad ? Ledo : If we have progressed with the 2nd LP ? Actually not. It's more pessimistic and it sounds more amateurish. We had a better rhythm section on the first one. It has kind of a garage sound. "<*••EuroPe&n distribution is improving. Konyk & our manager do a lot for it Do you think the band has the potential to make it big or is it OK if you remain in the underground cirf^U cuit ? %"*:• Ledo : No we can't make it big ' eos we're not good musicians and punk rock as you know ¿ not a matter of tíE masses. Many people thought we would, especially since we were on TV (videos, movies, etc.) and had lots of radio airplay. Certain people reproached us with commercialization because of this. It is OK to stay in the punk scene though. How is the situation in Slovakia gigwise ? Are there good venues, youth centres, squats, etc. to play ? Ledo : The gig situation is exactly the same as with the pop-rock scene over here just disastrous!


For example, in Bratislava (capital of Slovakia) there's only one club where alternativa music is played. Gigs virtually only take place there. Obviously commercially successful bands play also in other, more official venues. But that doesn' t appeal to us. Squats don't exist in Slovakia. On the other hand, people aren't that much interested in music over here. Their main reason for going to clubs is to drink. Do you ha ve a loyal following in Slovakia ? Ledo : Our fans aren't too loyal today. It was much better before (1988-89). At that time we had the best fans in Czechoslovakia. They followed us across the country. Later (after the revolution) the situation has weakened. Punk rock was not prohibited anymore, so that's why it was not so thrilling anymore. We now have another generation of fans who are also brilliant, especially out of Bratislava. About 200 people on average come to our gigs. Any plans to tour Europe ? Ledo : We'd love to. Considering that each of us has a steady Job, it won't be simple to arrange though. If anyone can help us out, get in touch please. I heard the band ORLIK sold over 100,000 copies of their CD. Are they that big or are also 'normal' people buying it ? Are they a right-wing band ? Is there a nazi skinhead problem over there ? Konyk : Yes ORLIK sold more than 150,000 copies of vinyl, CDs and tapes. A lot of normal people bought it 'eos they've had TV advertising and were something completely new here. Their first álbum was something like fun Oi!. It contained an anti-fascist song called 'Faschos'. They were surely no fascists, but strongly against gypsies and Germans. The band has split up now, the singer started a solo pop career and is married with a Germán girl! TWO of them are playing in HAGEN BADÉN

The nazi skinhead problem is like everywhere else but not too big, just the usual fights. Fortunately they are mostly hassling gypsies. Do you feel it's important not to sing only about 'girls and flowers', but also about socio-political issues ? Which bands have an impact on Zona A ? Ledo : Yes, but we don't like lyrics that are too 'anti', without any humour and overview. In today's tough times people want some entertainment at gigs. They're not interested in fantasies. All classic '77 punk bands have an impact on Zona A. A list of these bands would take up too much space. Is 'Americanization' also hitting there, like the youth looking up to the American lifestyle and also in the punk scene, people preferring American bands ? Konyk : 'Americanization' did hit with all its power, people try to be westier than the west.' I don't like it but I don't think it's a big problem. Yes it also stole some of our fans who are now listening to HC or really shitty bands like Faith No More or Red Hot Chilli Peppers, but it's their problem. I don't care too much about my culture, you can choose what you like.

Your second álbum is not available on vinyl. Are you pro or anti CDs ? Konyk : Our drummer prefers CDs and he's the only one with a CD-player. The bassist only has tapes and Ledo & me have quite large vinyl collections. But ~L will probably buy a CD-player soon ' eos there are a lot of CD-only releases including my faves CHELSEA. We'd like to say we are anti-CDs, but it would sound hypocritical as our new álbum carne out on CD and cassette formats only. Are you in touch with other bands ? Why is it Zona A haven't had much fanzine coverage ? Is there still a form of censorship for punk rock bands ? Konyk : Well, I'm in touch with LOKALMATADORE, DIE TOTEN HOSEN, BRAGGARTS (Germany) ,KLASSE KRIMINALE (Italy); THE PREMIERE (Austria); DECADENT FEW (UK) ,- S.O.D. (Sweden) and some Czech bands. We haven't had much coverage but the interest in us is growing. Over here our gigs sometimes get reviewed in the music press - mostly not bad but everybody attacks our 'dated' sound. No, censorship didn't exist at all, but as I said before, clubs or pubs don't exist and cultural houses are mostly run by ex-commies, so it's hard to get booked. What are the main problems in Slovakia today? Do you see any effective solutions ? Ledo : The envy! Stupid laws, corruption, impotence of the government etc. A one-room fíat costs more than 250,000 crowns and a month's salary is 4,500 crowns on average. Social politics are disastrous! I'm pessimistic, also about the developments in the rest of the world. An effetive solution would be healthy human sense but.... Konyk : I'm optimistic in the case of Slovakia ' eos the western world will now press our government to be democratic. Also the new generation of people will not grow under the communist ideology so they won't be so stupid I hope. In today's world the main problem is the increase in population.


THE VARDKERS Started out -in 1979 formed by vocalist Rat The line-up then was Rat on vocals, Bruce Ridel on guitar, Tom Lowe on bass and Garry Maloney on drums (who later went on to play for DISCHARGE in 1981) In November of '81 THE VARDKERS released their first record, a four-track EP 'Protest And Survive' on Inferno Rec. from Birmingham. After this Garry left the band and new drummer Brian Roe was the replacement. They recorded one more record for the Inferno label, three-track EP ' I Don Wanna Be A Victim', released in June 1982. Tom Lowe soon left the band after this reléase and the band then went on to sign a deal with Riot City Rec. from Bristol. George became the new bass player and the band released their next 7" 'Di e For your Government' followed by their first álbum 'Bloodsuckers' . Then there carne a period when there were major upheavals in the band personnel with the bassist, drummer and guitarist all parting company. Andy Baker on drums (ex-Warwound) , Damien Thompson on guitar (also ex-Warwound) and Broken Brick on bass then joined the band. With this new line-up they went into the studio to record the ' Led To The Slaughter' EP and two months later their much acclaimed M-LP ' Another Religión Another War', both on Riot City. In August 1984 after touring Holland and Germany, they signed a new deal with Rot Records from Mansfield. More line-up problems happened and Damien and Brick left to be replaced by Paul Miles on guitar and Graham Kerr on bass. The first reléase on Rot was the 12"EP called 'Massacred Millions' which contained 4 brand new tracks written by the two new members. A live álbum was also released by Rot. This was a recording from the desk taken

from the dates in Holland that the band played earlier that year. After the new EP was released Andy left to join Damien Thompson in his new group SACRILEGE. New drummer Warren joined and they went into the studio to record what was to be the last VARDKERS LP 'One Struggle One fight' released on the band's own label Libérate Records. Over the years THE VARDKERS have recorded several tracks for various compilations which were mainly for European labels plus a 7" for Conflict's label called 'No Hope Of A Future'. These recordings were never easy to obtain as they were on small obscure labels. Recently a comp álbum of their Riot City catalogue was released titled 'Deadly Games' . So far the history of THE VARDKERS. 1994 will bring a live CD 'At Leeds Bierkeller 1984' full of classics on ÜK label Retch Records and they're also working on some new material. Questions by Johan, answers by Rat. Note that the band sent no pictures or anyhting, so no chance to have a look at their ugly faces (ha ha).

Readers, check it out. What's the reason for getting back together ? What are the former members doing now ? Well to be honest, I missed The Varukers. It was a big part of my life and it seems we gave and can still give people a lot of enjoyment. We are looking forward to hitting Europe again. I'm the only one left from the original line-up, I'm a glutton for punishment really. As for the other members, we've had thousands of members over the years. Well, it seems that way. Some are still playing in various bands, others have given up. You had quite a few songs about (personal) freedom. What were they inspired by ? Do you feel they are still relevant today ? A difficult question to ask a vocalist where he or she gets inspiration from. Just lots of ideas swirling inside my head, which I try and put down to music. If anybody took the time to read our lyrics, they would understand what I was trying to say. I think the songs are still relevant today. Still people kill each other over religión, still millions are spent on trying to find a way to destroy our race and yes, people are still getting fucked over in one way or another.

You also criticized the government in your lyrics. What's the political/social/ economic climate in England like today ? Still the same really, the same oíd conservative government. Still the rich become richer and the poor become poorer. Tax on this, tax on that. New laws to withhold When exactly and why did you people's freedom, that just split up ? about sums up this question. Well, we sort of split at Not much change. around 1989 because we started to get into dif f erent What are the best memorias music : Slayer, Metallica you have from playing in The (and still are into these Varukers ? bands I might say) and our So many laughs and good gigs, music style changed, so we where do I start ? The Europdecided to start a new band, ean tours were great fun and playing with Discharge in Arbitrater. 1981 and 1987 was a classic. What have you been doing dur- These were in England. The ing those years of absence ? first tour we did in Europe I've been singing for Ar- was with Mau Maus and the bitrater and still am (I'm a last one was with Inferno man of many talents, ha ha) . from Germany, a good group We have just released our and real sound guys. These second LP 'Darkened Reality' are good memories, but hopeon CD-only on Cyclone Records fully we'll have a few more.


The Varukers belonged to the second punk wave. What were the main differences between the '77 bands and the bands from the early 80s ? The music in the second wave became a bit more noisier and harder and also more political. Each time had its great bands. What do you think of today's punk scene ? Any new bands you rate ? Well, we've lost touch with a lot of bands, but Discharge and GBH are still doing their bit and I'm sure there must be loads of bands throughout Europe still doing it. We played with a band the other week called MTA from Brighton They were pretty good, they have just released a single. A new Varukers live álbum is coming out soon. Do you have any special memorias from that particular gig ? Also, the 'Bloodsucfcers' LP has been reissued on CD. Did it sell well ? It's a live recording of a gig we did at Leeds Bierkeller in 1984, full of the best songs. The memory I have is that it was freezing. I think it was around January time when we did the gig. I don't think ' Bloodsuckers' has been re-released. It's a CD called 'Deadly Sames' with the majority of what we've recorded over the years on it. Some Bloodsuckers tracks are on it. I think it sold okay, no exact figures are known as yet. Now that you have reformed, do you find it difficult to get gigs ? We've done about 5 gigs since we got back together. I would like to get out and play more places that we never got to play first time around like Italy, Spain, Sweden, anywhere. A few people have written to me, so there is hope. No expectations, I just want people to turn up and enjoy themselves. Since when are you ' involved in the punk scene ? I first got into punk around 1979 when I was at school. I listened to some records our original drummer Garry Maloney had (who later fucked off and joined Discharge), blew my mind and fancied a bit of that. It's what got me into music. I might've becorne a brain surgeon if I hadn't listened to punk.

In the early 80s the "punks & skins unite" thing was very in. Do you feel it worked ? Did you know Gary Bushell and what do you think about the things he's done in the past and now ? In some áreas it did and in some it did not work. The punks and skins around Birmingham - a city near us were always falling out with each other and fighting, but in some towns they' d get on really well. I didn't really know Gary Bushell. I'd read the interviews he did for Sounds, but I don't think he liked The Varukers. He didn't like heavy stuff. I think he now writes for The Sun newspaper. A lot' of the early DK punk bands reformed in recent years. How would you respond to someone accusing you of jumping on that bandwagon ? Tough. We are doing The Varukers because we enjoy doing it and have missed it. Anyone that knows me knows that The Varukers are a big part of my life. If you feel we are bandwagon jumpers, fuck off and don' t bother coming to our gigs. If you want a good time, then get your arse down to see us when we hopefully tour Europe. What are some of the things the band strongly believe in? We strongly believe in fun, live music, no unnecessary violence and not fucking people over. I used to go on hunt sabs but not anymore. Most of the people I used to go around with have either got married or left the área. I recently heard a member of a band saying "you can' t make a revolution with guitars". Do you agree ? Well, I don't know if we can make a revolution but with music you can certainly make people think about a few things and themselves. Which bands had you a good relationship with back in the 80s ? How's life/the scene in your hometown ? We got on with The Exploited, Conflict and the majority of Discharge. We don't really know many newer bands except for the ones we've started to play with. Our hometown scene is crap.' Mind you, my hometown of Warwick is very small. Lots of tourists come here because of the famous castle.

What's your personal favourite Varukers song (lyrically and musically) ? Most of the stuff off ' Another Religión' 12" because it's hard-hitting in both ways. Were/are you into American hardcore (straight edge, skateboards, etc) ? No, I was never into skateboards (couldn't ride one) and I'm not a straight edge. I enjoy a drink and because I enjoy it, that's why I do it. I enjoyed the music of American bands like Dead Kennedys and some Black Flag. The Riot City singles have recently been collected on CD. Is this a good thing in your opinión or just an attempt at cashing in on the oíd stuff ? It's a good idea if you've only just got into the band because you get to hear the oíd stuff. Cashing in what cash ? I think it's a good idea to reléase the singles. What are your plans for the future ? Well, as I mentioned earlier in the interview, we have a live Varukers CD out and we hope to come and play Europe in 1994. If anybody would like to write to us, do so. The address is :

THE VARUKERS 30 BOSWELL CROVE WOODLOES ESTÁTE WARWICK WARWICKSHIRE CV34 SUR ENCLAND

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RHYTHM COLLISION will be touring Europe in April/May supported on the entire tour by Dutch nutters The Harries. The tour will take them to Holland, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, France, Spain, Belgium & England. Go and see 'em!


FANZINES Prices are not postpaid unless stated otherwise. All reviews by Johan.

THAT'S LIFE N"l/56 A5 p./£l Birth Of A Hooligan's dead, welcome to That's Life. They believe music has a unique ability to break down man-made barriers, to edúcate and unite. That's being displayed through articles on The Trojans, One Night Stand, Bigshot, G-Men, C-Charge, Oi Polloi, Erase Today, Back To The Planet, Easy Big Pella, Ragga, today's UK mod scene, The Ska Flames, plenty of ads and more. Very cool! (Po Box 276, Derby, DE1 9RU, England)

SKAKTUS N'l/36 A5 p./DM 5 ppd. New Germán publication entirely dedicated to ska. Interviews with Skaferlatine, Voodoo Glow Skulls, Fun Republic, The Juggins, Ska Trek, Ngobo Ngobo, Rudeness Empire, The Bakesys, Skankin' Pickle, Rare 'n' Tasty and other exciting bits & pieces including a crossword. The editor's enthusiasm and the content make this an excellent debut issue. (Roger Nolda, Eschenstrasse 6, 72116 Móssingan, Germany)

FAN MAIL N°6/36 A4 p./DM 2 Great farewell issue of this Germán punk rock zine. Articles on Dee Dee Ramone, Eddie & Hot Rods, Cockney Rejects; interviews with Funeral Dress and The Lurkers; plenty of concert reports (The Muffs, UK Subs, The Lurkers, Belgian Punk Rock Explosión, Chelsea,...) plus zine/record reviews. (Christian Pemsel, Schlegelstr. 59, 40789 Monheim, Germany)

THORA-ZINE N°3/92 A4 p./$5 ppd. Kinda Flipside meets Máximum Rock'n'Roll, but overall more leaning towards the former. It's got Cop Shoot Cop, The Pharcyde, NoFx, Black Moon, Earth, The Goats, Helmet, X, Unsane, GG Allin plus poetry, comics, reviews, news clippings, 6 pages of cool show flyers, playlists and plenty of display ads. Full colour cover and very professional layout . A truly good newcomer to the alternative US scene. (Po Box 571562, Houston, TX 77257-1562, USA)

MOLOKO PLUS N°2/32 A5 p./DM 3

Two lovely chicks grace the cover of this done Oi! zine which also contains a BRONCO BULLFROG N°4/28 A4 p./$3 ppd. well news/gossip section, a lookback on the Punk/skinhead crossover publication introfanzines of 1984, Boots & Braces, The Clash, ducing the bands The Skanxters, The System, Bierpatrioten, Boisterous, Public Toys, skinhead photographer John Byrne, Zona A, Of Oi! Records, record fairs & reviews The Templara, Oxblood, Skaface, Jackie Helen (Torsten Ritzki, Lindenallee 78, 45127 Wilson plus capable reviews, history of 2Essen, Germany) Tone and no less than 5 pages news of the world, all written in English. A little on Due to lack of space we can't review the expensive side, but apart from that one all the other zines we received, but of the best zines around. (Mark M. Brown, Apartado de Correos 1474, here's the basic info. They're all worthy of your support. 07800 Ibiza (Baleares), Spain) TIGHTEN UP (Ska & Oi!) : Udo Vogt, Hauptstr. STONKAGE N°5/12 A4 p./$l (Europe) 144, 52146 Wurselen, Germany. RUDE (Ska Hardcore zine shining through its sloppy Newsletter) : Kevin Flowerdew, 26 A Graven lay-out and enthusiasm. Inside are M.T.A., Road, Newbury, Berkshire, RG14 5NE, England. The Rickets, Joeyfat, Glue, PUS, ürban EL PERRO ROJO (Redskin Zine) : David Moreno, Excretia, good reviews and that's it. Not AA 56385, Bogotá 2 D.C., Colombia. DOCTOR bad at all. SKINHEAD (Anti-Racist Skinzine) : Apdo 4030, (Dave Morris, 756 St. Johns Road, Clacton- 48080 Bilbao, Spain. SMALL WONDER (Ska & On-Sea, Essex, C016 8BN, England) Soul) : Jan Kroll, Schulstr. 38, 45549 Sprockhóvel, Germany. KINDER NACHT (great TROOPS OF TOMORROW N°0/12 A4 p./IRC comic strip about scooter skins) : Island New independent Belgian streetmusic news- Easel Imaginations, #205-730 Vancouver St., letter covering punk rock, Oi!, ska & HC and Victoria, B.C., V8V 3V3, Canadá. SKINTONIC written in English. Interviews with Last (SHARP Skin Mag) : PLK 077 581-C, 12043 Years Youth, U.P.I.A., a mail order list, zine reviews, some 'ads and nothing more. Berlin, Germany. KRIMINAL CLASS (Oi!) : Marco Balestrino, C.P. 426 (Céntrale), 17100 Good to see some 'competition' for Skoink. (Kris Van Poppel, Xaverianenplantsoen 32, Savona, Italy. CLIMAX (small newsletter on punk/HC & skin music) : Gaetan Pruvost, 436 2300 Turnhout, Belgium) Rué d'Helfaut, 62570 Buques, France. SKINS, RUBÍES & MODS N°7/32 A5 p./$2 DIFFERENT WORLDS (for fans of Red Letter Day Non-political skinhead stuff here : Oxblood, only) : RLD, 22 Mayhall Road, Copnor, Anti-Heros, Agent Bulldogg, Buck-0-Nine, a Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO3 5AU, England. .(Informative & up-to-date report of a Scooter Rally in San Francisco, S.O.S.-BOTE music reviews, pictures of skin mates and skinzine) : Scheffold & Pusch GdbR, Postfach 88012 Friedrichshafen, Germany. ads. Ir this is what you're looking for, 2211, OÜREKA (Anti-Racist Punk, Oi! , Ska) : PLK send two bucks. 077 717-C, 12043 Berlin, Germany. (Po Box 704, Annapolis, MD 21401, USA)


What made you decide to form an organisation for gay skinheads ? What are ths group's main goals ? There have been a couple of gay skinhead organisations in the U.K. which have since folded due to lack of support and organisation. The "Gay Skinhead Group" G.S.G. has been going strong for 4 years now and I started looking after things just over a year ago when it had a membership of about 40. Now I have over 150 members and produce a zine 6 times a year all single handed. The Group is a social group and nothing more, with the intention of simply putting gay skins in contact with each other particular ly for those who travel who for instance want somewhere to stay or a night out on the town. I have never thought that sexual orientation has anything to do with being a skinhead. I'm totally pissed off with the media, always portraying skins as the bad guys. They are not! Skins have been around since 1968. They started in Britain and as far as I'm concerned they are a brilliant export. It's a pity such an ace cult has had such bad publicity. If you look at all the violence on TV, only a small proportion (about 1%) are skins and yet they are shown in the

forefront and pick up the and maybe this will pave the blame for the trouble. Of way for more of them coming course in any society there out and joining up. are a few bad apples that What kind of activities does give the majority a bad ñame. the group organise for its Skins are real - most are members ? what they are because they The group organises social are individuáis. evenings at selected pubs Are there any problems life once a month and members oras a gay skin entail ? ganise smaller parties, There are no problems being a visits to gigs etc. in their gay skin any more than just own área. With such a widebeing gay or bi. In fact a spread membership it's imposgay skin will get far lass sible to cater for everyone once. I do publish hassle than the others simply at because he doesn't look or "Skinhead Nation", our act gay. group's zine, every two which helps to keep What makes your group dif- months members informed. ferent from other (skinhead) Do you know of any well-known organisations ? The G.S.G. is the only gay people/bands in the skinhead skinhead group in the U.K. scene who are gay ? and I suspect the largest in Yes. Personally I know three the world, with an interna- very well-known gay skinheads tional membership with mem- in the music business and am bers in France, Germany, aware of many more. You only Belgium, Sweden, Portugal, have to go to the gay pubs USA and even as far away as and clubs in London, Brazil just to mention a few. Amsterdam or anywhere for I wouldn't say it was any that matter, and you will be different to any other social surprised who you see there, group. It's what members make particularly in the bars that of it. have a big skinhead diéntele What feeling do the members Are there any bands that are have towards S.H.A.R.P. and generally popular in the punks ? G.S.G. ? The G.S.G. supports and pro- Mostly Ska bands, which of motes SHARP which currently course was the original skindoes not have an active base head music. Looking at the in the U.K. One of our mem- membership list it looks like bers is hoping to organise all sorts of music is apsomething in the near future. preciated. As far as I'm aware all of our members are against any sort of racial prejudice and I have a couple of black members who are an important part of the group. The punk scene is just another way of people expressing themselves. It is really good. Are there any Lesbian skin girls to your knowledge ? Do you know of any Wotcha Mate! groups ? Come and join the G.S.G. Funny you should mention that! A MEMBERSHIP OF THIS WELL ESTABLISHED GROUP IS skin girl has just OPEN TO ALL GENUINE GAY SKINHEADS WITH THE RIGHT asked if she can ATTITUDE AND GEAR. IT IS NON POLITICAL, NON RACIST join the groupwhich AND IS THE ONLY U.K. GAY SKINHEAD GROUP. of course she can, and she will be the GROUP'ZINE - CONTACT LIST first fernale member. Of course MUSIC REVIEWS - SOCIAL EVENTS there are quite a number of lesbian skin girls around AND MUCH MUCH MORE

GAY

SKINHEAD GROUP

FOR DETAILS OF MEMBERSHIP WRITE TO:-

"SKIN", P.O. Box 234, GUILDFORD, Surrey. GU4 7TX


Quiteña few skins like "gay bashing". How do you counter them ? I have never heard of a gay skinhead being beaten up by a straight skinhead. Quite the reverse, where straight skins have come to the 'rescue' of a gay skin who is being threatened. I have never felt under threat from another skinhead, gay or straight. This camaraderie doesn't seem to exist in other sections of the community. We are all skins first and homophobics should go and dig a hole and climb into it. Would you say the members share certain political ideas ? No. The group is certainly non-political and everyone is entitled to their own opinión. A percentage of the membership is unfortunately unemployed which must throw a slight leaning towards the left simply because they think someone else must be able to do better than the .currently elected government. What' s your relationship with the hetero (skinhead) scene ? Do they support the group ? I have a lot of straight skinhead mates who couldn't care less that I'm gay and why should they ? They would be first on the scene if I needed help and often come out for a beer at a gay venue and enjoy themselves. I also have loads of female friends who really like going out for the evening and feeling safe. Do any gay skins show racist/ fascist tendencies ? If yes, don't you think that's a contradiction as the nazis were/ are very opposed to gays ? I'm sure in every organisation there are people with these tendencies even if they don't show them outwardly. Members are aware when they join that the G.S.G. does not support such behaviour. You mention the nazis. Their intention was to rule the world and to do this, they needed supporters which meant people. Gays did not contribute to this 'farming' for political ends and so they simply got in the way which is the only reason they were oppressed. The rest of the world did not then tolérate such behaviour and will never do so in the f uture. Fortunately it's a lost cause.

Homosexuality is often con- great being recognised. sidered as one of the main Do you have a final message causes of AIDS. How do you for our readers ? deal with that ? I've always considered Let's get one thing absolute- Yes. that skins have something ly clear. AIDS is not a gay between their ears even if disease. HIV had been around it's not hair! They are not a in the world for many years mob and do have their own before it was identified, views to which we are all mostly in the East Indies and as long as they África. The alarming number 'entitled don't attempt to condemn the of deaths in the gay com- lives of others, and this munity, for no apparent goes for the attitude towards reason, started investiga- gay members of the community tions into the cause, and HIV whether skin or otherwise. We was discovered. It is a fact don' t know what our supposedthat most gays are promis- ly straight mates do when we cuous, unlike the monogamous are not there. We are all relationships enjoyed by human and we are SKINHEADS! heteros, and this obviously Cheers! Chris : Proud led to the infection spread- Skinhead. Gay Skinhead Group, ing more rapidly, initially British Skins. through the gay community. That trend is now reversed and let's hope that the hetero community also listens to the health advice.

"SKIN" P.O. BOX 234 CUILDFORD SURREY CU47TX ENGLAND

NEWS How do you feel about all the ñames given to gay people like faggot, queer, fag, poof, etc ? There was a saying at school 'sticks and stones may hurt my bones but ñames will never hurt rae' . How true that is. I grew up with that philosophy, I am what I am. If they haven't got anything better to say then I suggest they shut up. I've got got a few ñames I could retalíate with but what's the point. I've got better things to do. What is more important : being a skinhead or being gay ? Is that a major priority ? I chose to be a skinhead, I didn't chose to be gay. Being a skinhead is my life and gives me an identity. Being a skin is number one priority. but being gay and also a skin is one hell of a turn on. I'm tough and don't need the image to prove it, but it's

- CHARGE 69 is a new French band featuring Capsul from PKRK on bass, Spirou from Molodoi on guitar and Laurent from Skaferlatine/Bird Rec. on drums. Influences are ÜK Subs, Sham, Cockney Rejects, etc. A debut single is in the works. - G.M.M. Records plans to reléase a follow-up to the famous US OF Oí! sampler (Link Records 1988 and recently reissued on CD) . Those Unknown, Oxblood, Anti-Heros, The Pride, Templars, Jack The Lad, Pist 'n' Broke, Patriot, Niblick Henbane, Headwound and a few others will be appearing on it. Contact : GMM, 190 Hale Street, Atlanta, GA 30307, USA. - LET'S GO BOWLING have reformed with a new lead singer and have been playing some performances locally again in their hometown of Fresno.


THE PHOTOBOOK is the work of the people at Double Shot and has 68 pages full of skinhead photos. A thousand copies have been printed and the price is HFL 30 (Europe) - HFL 35 (rest of the world) . Send your order to : A.H. Van Der Sluys, Po Box 2256, 6040 NA Roermond, Holland. - 1994 marks THE TOASTERS' 10 year anniversary as a performing band. They are currently working on material for their 5th álbum, tentatively titled 'Dub 56' . Plans are to record it in New York and to mix it down at Pork Pie's Berlin studio. Other plans comprise a tour of Florida, Venezuela and Europe visiting Germany, Spain, Switzerland, England, Italy, Holland, Scandinavia, Belgium & France plus a 10 year reunión show at the legendary New York venue CBGB's, opening a South American office as well as a store in NYC of Moon Records and expanding their existing merchandise company. - DNITED FRONT is the largest most organizad, non-racist skinhead organisation in the U.S. today. They're spread through over 35 states and their goal is to support & strengthen the movement by any means necessary. UF puts out an'update to let skins know what's going on within the movement, correspond with over 150 skins a week, support & promote Oi! and Ska bands, zines, record labels. The Update #4 is now on sale with Blitz, Anti-Heros, The Business, Oxblood, Templars, Pist 'n' Broke, Skatalites, Broken Héroes, The Busters, Dance Hall Crashers. Over 40 pages full-size available from United Front (HQ), Po Box 8277, Jersey City, NJ 07308, USA. - WHAT'S THAT NOISE runs a fanzine, a radio show, a mail order and now a video zine is their latest project. The first # features Cry Of Justice (Indianapolis/interview + rehearsal stuff), Darkside (ex-Sheer Terror/ídem) and Sealed With A Fist (New York/ Live at CBGB's) - 86 minutes of puré NYHC guaranteed. BF 300 (Belgium) - BF 350 (Europe) incl. postage from Alain Herszaft, Av. V. Olivier 10A, Box 67, 1070 Brussel, Belgium. - A new ANTI-HEROS CD should see the light of day soon.

- DNDERDOG RECORDS is a collectively run organisation based in Chicago that is dedicated to representing the truly alternative/underground punk scene in Chicago and its surrounding suburbs threugh releasing records, printing a fanzine, selling stuff at shows, doing mailorder, -and direct to store distribution for all the Chicago área bands and record labels. They publish a newsletter to keep you up-to-date on their projects. An IRC should get you the latest one : Underdog Records, Po Box 14182, Chicago, IL 60614, USA.

OÍ! ***

**

- SPECIAL BEAT called it a day after the very successful SKAVOOVEE tour which also featured The Skatalites, The Toasters, The Selecter and some smaller bands. Ranking Roger is moving ahead to put back together GENERAL PUBLIC. Next year's edition of Skavoovee should see Madness and Laurel Aitken hit the U.S.A. all over. - S.O.S.-BOTE is a free skinhead zine with its own mail order service of records, videos, zines, badges and TShirts. An IRC will get you the newest issue. Address : see fanzine reviews.

is being compiled by 'Helen Of OÍ RECORDS FOR Fimire publication. WHAT ARE YOUR TOPIO Olí SONGS? Give it some thought,thensendyourTOP.U/m. To

R. K. BURWDGE FIAT 3 ISSWNQ GMUXNS V6NTNOR I.O.W. PO38 1QX TEL 0983 856620

England you could'WIN A COO credit note to spend on new or rara records from the Helen of Olí lists. ' 8O SENO IN YOUR TOP 1O OH BONOS

- Good to see new S.H.A.R.P. chapters still popping up here and there. A new one has been set up in Paris to promote anti-racism among skinheads. Get in touch with them at : Pre Villabrun, 91 Av. Doumer, 92501 Rueil, France.

NONA/

Jorge of NYC drunk punk band THE CASUALTIES is starting an own record label. Planned releases are a compilation LP of NY & NJ bands featuring Blanks 77, Broken Héroes, Dysfunctional Youth, Oxblood, Public Nuisance,- the Casualties second 7"; a split with Funeral Dress - MOON RECORDS plans to re- 7" (Belgium) & Last Years Youth léase a 2 CD box set show(UK). We'll keep you informed casing up-and-coming bands that you will hear much more through these pages. Address from in the future. Titled see ad. ' SKARMAGEDDON : CLASS OF - KINGSTON BEAT PRODUCTIONS 1994', the álbum will feature has been practically none Magadog, Spring Heeled Jack, existant due to a lack of The Checkered Cabs, MU 330, funds, but they are now ready Durango 95 as well as new to explode onto the ska scene material from The Skunks and with good traditionally based Desorden Publico. Moon Rec., Jamaican Ska - beginning with Po Box 1412, Cooper Station, the new single ' Roots' by THE New York, NY 10276, USA. ISRAELITES. Five more recordK-BAAL is a non-profit ings will come out in the D.I.Y. distribution of mainly coming year. Contact : Po Box hardcore records. They do 62, Sunland, CA 91041, USA. wholesale and mailorder. Some - YOKEL RECORDS specializes of the labels they carry are in oíd UK punk records. They Allied, Lost & Found, Loony are a bit pricy, but there's Tunes, WRF, etc. Write for a some very rare stuff on the free K-Balogue to Po Box 1024 list which can be obtained 3300 BA Dordrecht, Holland. from 53 Louise Rd, Dorchester Dorset, DT1 2LU, England.


MAROON TOWN got together in London in August 1986. What distinguishes them from other bands is their new approach of incorporating rap & funk in their rootsy ska/reggae sound, plus their radical message of justice, freedom and anti-racism. They recently opened for The Skatalites here in Belgium and as we were kinda disappointed by their performance, we asked the band what it was due to. They responded "WE NORMALLY KICK ASS", so that's still in store for us next time around All questions answered by Deuan Germán, guitarist and founder member. Maroon Town is a small island I think, populated by runaway slaves. Do you have ahy (geographical) connections with this place or does the ñame stand for the band's political views, namely freedom ? Maroon Town is a community in upland Jamaica which was first formed in the 18th century by slaves who escaped from the Spanish and British plantations. Parts of upland Jamaica are so impenetrable

that the Maroons as they were called were able to form independent and autonomous communities. In fact such was their strong sense of freedom and resistance that the British government were eventually forced into signing a treaty with the Maroons, leaving them to live in peace. The Maroon communities of Jamaica are still in existence today. I'm intending to go to Jamaica soon when I hope to make a pilgrimage to Maroon Town which should be fascinating. I was born in Jamaica in the small town of Spalding which is right in the middle of the island. My mother is Jamaican and my father Welsh. It seemed the obvious thing to look to the map of Jamaica which is on my bedroom wall for a ñame for the band when we first started. Maroon Town was an obvious choice. It stood for everything we wanted the band to be and mean. Incidentally I must mention Rajan Datar who started the band with me in 1986 - my life-long friend who I must credit with so

many inspired ideas that created Maroon Town. Rajan left the band to follow a career in televisión and journalistn, but we still collabórate on various projects. Rajan and I wanted the band to be multi-. racial and to include women. I guess an Equal Opportunities recruitment policy. I think Rajan, as an Asían who grew up in an all-white London suburb, had felt excluded quite often as a youth growing up and knew what it was like to be discriminated against. As a result he felt keen to avoid the typical ' lads together in a band' syndrome which is so often very exclusive and macho. A good laugh but ultimately very limiting because it excludes people who don't follow the 'lads' mentality. The other reason for making the band a kind of rainbow alliance of people was so that we would attract a diverse audience and not limit who carne to see us, especially as we were starting off within the ska scene - not the most diverse of audiences by any means. Our most inspiring gigs are when there is this kind of mixture of people dancing and having a good time - , students, blacks, skins, punks, oíd people, you ñame it they are there - at least that is my dream. That is a big political, spiritual & conscious statement that can be made in music I think. Are any of the band members involved in political, social or cultural organisations ? I work for an organisation called "The Working Group Against Racism In Children's Resources" which promotes the use and understanding of resources positively representing black people/children amongst the under 8's age group. Basically the group's ethos is that children from a very early age pick up messages/values about themselves and others through the images they receive of other people/ethnic groups. So the absence, characterizing and stereotyping of black people in the resources that children use in books, dolls, posters, puzzles, TV programmes, etc. will have a negative effect on the selfesteem, development of young black children as well as leading to misplaced feelings of superiority amongs white


children. In the long run this is very destructive indeed to society. I spoke recently to someone,a teacher who had taken her pupils from an all-white county in Eastern England on a school trip where they had bumped into a group of black children. The reaction of the white children was to jump up and down making ape-like noises to the black children. The teacher was shocked as she would never have thought that her children harboured such feelings about black people. Where did they get their attitude towards black people from ? These were only young children under 10 years oíd. How would life be for a solitary black child growing up in that kind of environment ? These are the kind of issues that the WGARCR are trying to address. You seem to be partial to tropical cultures. Apart from the band ñame and the multicultural line-up, you also have songs about people coming from these parts of the world. Tell us something about the songs "Pound To The Dollar" and "Goodbye To The Empire". The latter is an instrumental but to me the short intro says more than a whole song. Right from the beginning, as I have said, Rajan and I wanted to make some kind of statement with the band. Our first single "City Riot" was a cover of a Jazz classic called "Jive Samba" by Nat and Cannonball Aderley covered by Prince Buster in the 6Os. We did our own versión and added archive material from a speech by Rap Brown, a US 60s black activist. Though an instrumental we immediately established what Maroon Town were about. We were then lucky enough to meet Stevie B. who had already written "Pound To The Dollar". He simply added these lyrics to an instrumental we were doing at the time - "Dollar In The Teeth" by Lee Perry. The result was the ultímate Maroon Town song - a poignant lyric over an upbeat rocksteady tune. Really Stevie B. should talk about what inspired the writing of "Pound To The Dollar" but I will take the liberty of answering on his behalf. He tells me that one day he was watching the news on the

relative movements of the Dollar and the Pound which was followed by scenes of poverty and deprivation from somewhere on the globe. "Pound To The Dollar" was a result of the stark contrast and really a comment on Third World debt. A crippling channelling of wealth from the Third World to the West. "Lots of money in the world but not enough to go around" .

"Goodbye To The Empire" we wrote was an instrumental, but the way it turned out authentically early Jamaican ska - we decided, as it was going on the Pound To The Dollar EP, we would ñame it Goodbye To The Empire as a tribute to the first Jamaican migrants who carne to Britain in the 50s. The Empire refers to the Empire Windrush which was the ship that brought the first Jamaicans to England.

not an issue which is high on the political agenda though there are some groups which are very vocal in this área. On Dutch TV one of the Maroon Town members declared that if the audience starts shouting racist crap, the band leaves the stage. Is that true ? Yes I did say that we would leave the stage if there was any racist abuse aimed at the

band. However, we don't have trouble at our gigs. I think it's too easy to focus on the negative, worse case scenario which so many 'political' bands do - discoursing about what they hate, what is wrong with the world etc. Sure, outline the problems but don't forget to créate the solutions even if it's just a good feeling from the music. Let's face it, who is going to do good in the world if Maroon Town are one of the you're pissed off with it! few British bands taking a Cynicism breeds hatred. strong stance against racism. Is Maroon Town primarily a Why do you think especially live band or do you prefer Germán bands are more likely the studio work ? Tell us to sing about racism ? something about upcoming conIt seems to me that Germany' s certs. What are some of the problems with racism are very best and worst gigs you've new and have a high profile played to date ? on the national agenda and so We are very much a live band. it is natural that young peo- That's where we best express ple are going to be taking ourselves. We are very much a the issues on board and make vibes band. We want the ensome kind of statement. I am tire audience to be drawn always impressed by the young into our music and perforGermán people I meet and mance and it normally works their vocal opposition to out that way. However, the racism. In Britain where the studio is also an absorbing scale of racist attacks has place to work and we are increased dramatically in the frequently in studios writing last few years it is still and demoing new material.


We nave toured a lot Germany, Holland, Belgium, Spain, Scandinavia - to promote our new ĂĄlbum "One World". We are hoping to have a new record out soon and to extend our world travelling. I like gigs where there is a buzz going down and I hate gigs that are poorly planned and therefore the audience feel kind of tired or bored, or just let down. Best gigs ? Definitely in Sevilla at the World Expo 92. We played for 7 nights on the ' laJce of Spain' which was a stage actually situated on the lake. Our performance was preceeded each night by what must have been for its time the most extravagant sound, light, lazer and firework display over the lake. Very spectacular. After this we would come on playing to several thousand people who had just had the spectacle of their lives. Follow that! However I think we did. How did the Japanese tour go? Japan was wonderful. The best organisation I have ever experienced. There's a great buzz about ska over there. It's fairly young but most importantly. 'Smash Corporation' , the Japanese agency that brought us over there, are very much into promoting ska in Japan and they do it very well with a lot if imagination and enthusiasm which rubs off on the audiences. They are well into their ska.

We had a great experience there. The people who looked after us and in general the Japanese were very friendly and helpful. We have never really toured with other ska bands apart from in Japan - The Trojans and Jump With Joey who are from Los Angeles. However we did 4 dates with The Skatalites in London and Germany last September. What do you think of all the ska festivals that have been organised since the beginning of the most recent ska wave ? They all seem to die a quiet death. Ska fests. So many of the fests I have been to have a kind of tired, stale feel to them as if nothing new is happening. And to have lots of bands on in one go is bloody tiresome. The fests follow a very limited format, one band on after the other, a few oĂ­d-time records spun in between for good measure. More cross-polination with other scenes would not be a bad thing to get more fun, entertainment and innovation into the scene. It's high time! US punk band Dead Kennedys once said they were not just a fun band and that their gigs were not meant to be purely entertainment. Can you identify yourself with this statement ? I can best answer this ques-

tion with a rough quote from Jimmy Cliff who said that lyrically his music was about human suffering and experience, but was conveyed on the light uplifted Jamaican popular music. As I pointed out earlier, to make a point to express injustice does not mean that one has to become gloomy or overly serious or just plain angry. With this approach people will perhaps start thinking that human injustice and the quest for equal rights and peace are dreadfully gloomy affairs and to be avoided at all costs. Where's the MTV channel ?! Over a decade ago 2-Tone carne up in Britain. It was a period of huge unemployment / race riots and the Thatcher regime Bands like The Specials and The Beat openly attacked Maggie and her supporters. How is the situation now after 15 years of Tory government ? Fifteen years of Tory rule. It's evident that the political processes we have been used to over the last 50 years are no longer relevant in this rapidly changing and dangerous world. Socialism is almost a dirty word these days. Our valĂşes seem to be more based on personal and individual gratification and aggrandissement. That's how one's worth in this world is displayed. We live in a very complicated society and young people can confront a baffling range of choices to opportunities or worse, feel that they have no choices or opportunities. Our Labour Party seems to be at a loss just like the Tories, but I wish the British people just for the sake of exercising our socalled democracy change this present government. Fifteen years have made them arrogant, heavyhanded and out of touch. I try to remain positive and as active as possible in the world. Just try and be good same for Maroon Town.


What made you decide to form a ska band in a period (post 2-Tone) in which almost nobody listened to ska ? Were you involved in the 2-Tone scene of the late seventies ? Nevar really involved in the 2-Tone era. I had come back from Jamaica in 1986 where I had been listening•to a lot of reggae and getting into ska as well. Maroon Town were formed very much in a vacuum though the ska scene certainly helped us on our way. Germán ska band Blechreiz said that bands like Maroon Town will last longer than others because you mix different styles. Do you agree ? Straight-forward ska is limited. Maybe with some outstanding singers, good songs, brilliant vocal arrangements etc. it would be great but I haven't heard many of those. Do you f ollow today' s ska scene ? Are you in touch with other bands ? Not really anymore. We are just doing our own thing mostly, though if we are offered a straight-forward ska gig we will do it but there seems to be more happening outside of it, especially for us. We are in touch with a number of bands like Gaz from The Trojans. We are promoting a gig with the Ska Flames from Japan and that' s about it. Is the new ska scene getting any media attention in Britain ? How important are fanzines to bands in the underground (ska) scene ? No is the answer to that. Not for a few years now when a revival was predicted. But there were no great bands and the songs were weak. When we last had a record out, especially "Pound To The Dollar" and "City Riot" we had lots of mainstream radio play and substantial press coverage. Fanzines do a great job keeping the ska scene alive and I think the survival of the scene really rests on these dedicated people who consider it a labour of love to get these zines out. Are you able to make a living out of your music ? Living out of music ? It is possible but right now it isn't happening. There are 8 of us in the band and to survive & flourish you have to be very good live and have product that is getting

substantial airplay. That's where we are looking to, but we see most of our 'action' abroad where the music scene is a lot more alive.

Why is ska not as commercially popular as it was in the late 70s in your opinión ? Unfortunately nothing really new has come out of the ska scene that has fitted in with the present commercial climate. It has been a jaded & tired scene in some respects and I haven't really heard many great songs out of the scene. Of course the mega giants - a white band (mainly) doing Jamaican based music - are UB 40, great songs (albeit mostly covers) & very well produced. The interest there is through reggae, ska, DJ music is huge throughout the world - Japan, South America, Europe, USA, S.E. Asia next - so the potential exists but it's going to need some fresh energy, ideas and creativity. We're' recording soon and the plan is to get a hit of some nature. It's necessary for the band's survival. We all love it and want to make some money out of what we love doing.

Tell us 'continentals' about some good places to hang out in London ? Soho : fantastic selection of clubs, bars, pubs, venues. •rixton -. on a aturday daytime he market/Brixto is happening ¡West Indian/black community/young ipeople/real life! \Notting Hill -. for the Groovers amongst you. Millions of cool bars, clubs, pubs and of course the carnival. Finsbury Park : more rough & ready than the above but a truly multi-racial/ ethnic área. London is rich with different kinds of hangouts and if I started naming them I would never finish because they are all great. It is a fantastic city. Some Maroon Town records have been released by Link/ Skank. What have been your experiences with them ? Link have been OK with us. No complaints. They got 2 of our records, out. Maybe they could have done a lot more but that's always the case isn't it. Anyway Mark Brennan of Link is a good guy.

Do you have a final message for nazi skinheads throwing molotov cocktails at refugees ? Do you feel it's right to forbid racist bands to play or is this just another form of censorship ? A message to nazi skins. Wel\ thin ably be ignored or misconstrued. But I would say.... open your minds & hearts or you're going to end up very bitter, twisted and unhappy individuáis full of hate and fear. Now what kind of way is that to live ? It would be difficult to forbid all racist bands to play but if bands incite & promote violence, then they must be stopped. If some nazi band were playing next where I live, I would campaign to have the venue boycotted.


TO 'BUSINESS' m^ NOT TO 'BUSINES* THAT WAS THE^ BIG OUESTIONU! BHB the local au-. thorities Once upon a time. . . that there's . . .in September 1993. Sitting going to be in the local pub and talking a huge skinabout one thing and another head gig in I, Bart C. (some people may Tienen. And know me, I'm the skinhead as we all with the little white spot in know, when the neck) mentioned that the people hear first big reunión gig of The the word Business in Germany was can'skinhead' the word 'nazi' is celled because of troubles just around the córner. In with the local authorities. the meantime every newspaper After a few beers, Johan and radio station had reportSkoink, Lefty Klaas and I ed that thousands of 'nazi decided to take over from the skinheads' were going to inguys of Boots & Braces to vade their city. Teachers organise the whole thing. were even telling their puI wrote several letters to pils to stay inside because the band but never got an ' these nasty men are going to answer. Then Klaas phoned shave your head' . No kidding! Micky Fitz and bingo, he A new hall...more than agreed to play in Belgium on 2lst January 1994. Johan and 100 kilometres away from Klaas started to get things the first one. organised together with a pub SHIT, and all this happened owner from Tienen (Leopold 4) only a week before the gig. who booked 2 venues (one Johan succeeded in finding spare venue, you never know). another venue but there was Both Johan & Klaas had al- one problem : it was more ready a lot of experience in than 100 km. from Tienen ('Zaal Pede' in Sint-Lievensorganising gigs, so they preHoutem). Johan and Klaas were pared almost everything. really inventive those days About secret pólice, and hired a coach (for quite newspapers, T.V., radio- a lot of money) so that people coming by train could stations & teachers. I said 'almost' because there easily be transported to the was something we hadn't taken new venue. into consideration : the Johan Skoink, Lefty Klaas, Belgian Secret Pólice. For Thomas Sharp (a good pal of one reason or another we lost us) and Bart White Spot inour first venue (Dierenmarkt) formed as many people as posOk, no problem we thought, sible about the change. Tons let's look for another place. of letters were mailed and We found it quite easily but dozens of phonecalls & faxes we also lost that hall after were made. You should see our a few days. Why ? We didn't phone bilis! Everything know. After a while we even settled you think ? Forget lost our 'spare venue'. it! The goddamn secret pólice Little by little we found out had discovered the gig was what was going on. Some now taking place in Sintstupid bloke had tipped off Lievens-Houtem by threatening the pub owner from Tienen.

The next thing the pigs did was informing the mayor of Sint-Lievens-Houtem of the whole thing of course to which he banned the concert from his town. Johan and me made an appointment with him hoping to change the man' s ideas. It all turned out to be useless. The man, a 77 year oíd conservative catholic, started to shake & tremble when he heard the word 'concert'.

No venue two days before the gig. No way we could warn the hundreds of people all across Europe to tell them that the gig was cancelled, not to mention our financial losses and the big disillusion for the bands, organisers & fans. The big problem was that Johan ñor Klaas could look for a venue because everybody knew them by now, so I started my ' quest for a venue' . Wednesday afternoon : Johan and me were driving to ' Zaal Elroda' in Herzele. Johan stayed in the car because the owner knew he was involved in the punk/skinhead scene. I told the owner that a friend of mine would like to do a gig with Dutch band ' The Magnificent' (The Business was already known by far too many people) on Friday. Johan had told me he was kind of a money grubber and so it seemed. He agreed, but wanted some


cash in advance so Klaas signed the contract and gave him the money that evening.

stayed quiet. The Harries had arrived but The Business hadn't and it was already 8PM. No way this would end Tapping phonecalls. well. Suddenly I recognized But the pólice didn't keep the car of my neighbour. He quiet and still tried to get was driving like hell and information. We told them the 'The Business' bus was folgig was cancelled. We were lowing them. They were being more careful this time. chased by a pólice van. My Firstly, only Johan, Klaas, neighbour told me he tried to Thomas and I knew the ñame of get rid of the pólice but it the new venue. We didn't even was difficult with a bus. I tell our closest friends ñor told Micky Fitz about the the guys from The Business. problems and he stayed very Secondly, we became suspi- calm. 'No problent mate, just cious and didn't use our tell me how to reach the phones anymore 'eos no matter venue' . No way we could diwhere we went, a few moments rectly go to the venue which the boys in blue turned up as was only 100 metres from the well, so we thought they were market square in Herzele betapping our phones. cause the cops would certainThursday we all waited in ly fol-low us. A Business' fear of a phonecall from the roadie advised us to split up owner of the venue, the the band in different cars pólice, etc. No need to tell and drive away as quicly as you it was a big relief not possible so the pólice were to receive any of these. The not able to follow us. But didn't agree and only phonecalls we got were Micky from skins asking if The answered ' why don't we just Business were gonna play or go for it' . He seemed right, not and from nervous police- we weren't followed. men who didn't trust us. In the meantime no further It seemed all to quiet on the skins turned up in Herzele. western front. Lefty Klaas Yeah, a Business gig for only got a phonecall from The Mag- 50 people. Again Micky stayed nificent at 11PM Thursday calm and told us they were night. ' Sorry Klaas, we can' t gonna play even if there were play because one of the mem- only 50 people. bers got ±11' . No! This was Oi1 It's A World League really becoming a nightmare. Luckily Johan could reach The Festival. Harries, also from Holland I decided to have a look in and they agreed to play a gig Sint-Lievens-Houtem. It was amazing when I entered the only 20 hours later. village : skinheads all Friday afternoon : the big around. I recognized some of day. Johan stayed at the them : Klasse Kriminale and venue in Sint-Lievens-Houtem Asociale from Italy, Boots & to tell everyone that 'the Braces and Udo Vogt with his gig was cancelled', so we mates from germany, the told the secret pólice. In Nightmare security, the fact Johan told everyone that French Oüboys from The he was going to announce the Herberts, UK ska band Too ñame of the new venue around Hot, etc. Yeah, we could have 8PM. In the meantime Tienen an Oi! It's A World League was under siege with riot Festival. squads everywhere. Over 250 skins we couldn't warn in time turned up in Tienen and about 150 were sent back home by the cops. The pub owner managed to get the other skins to Sint-Lievens-Houtem. Meanwhile Klaas and me were preparing everything in the venue 'Elroda'.

The Business chased by the pólice, It became really shitty because more and more cops turned up in Sint-LievensHoutem. In Herzele everything

But I looked for Johan and told him to mobilise everybody so the gig could start. It was really fantastic seeing more than 500 skins leaving the parking lot. The cops .were threatening Johan but the fuckers were powerless. It was funny to see all these baldies in their cars with in the middle one pólice car. The hundreds of skins loved it!

That atmosphere, that crowd, those bands!!! Around 10PM the hall in Herzele was packed with 600 to 700 skinheads. There was a wonderful atmosphere : no troubles, no fights, no sieg heiling. It was great to hear all these different languages (Spanish, English, Italian, Dutch, French, Germán). Micky Fitz asked if were satisfied now. Of course we were, we had never thought it would end this well. The Harries played a great set and received good response from the audience. But the moment everybody had been waiting for was the performance of The Business of course. Around 11PM they got on stage. A few minutes earlier Micky had scared us like hell by saying he was too drunk to rernember his lyrics, but once on stage he and the band played a fantastic gig. All the classics were there : 'Suburban Rebels' , ' Saturdays Héroes' , ' Handball' , ' Harry May' , ' Smash The Discos' , 'Do A Runner' , etc. and everyone was singing along. In the meantime Johan and Klaas were being interrogated by the furious secret pólice in the venue's kitchen. Around 1AM, after being called back on stage 3 times and a set of almost 2 hours, Micky had to cali it a day 'eos it was too hot and he was too tired. > This was the end of one of the best days of my life.

Thanks. We'd like to thank all the people who supported us in one way or another. Hopefully we can welcome you again at one of the next Skoink. Also thanks to both bands for being very cooperative. Greetings to Markus and the Nightmare security who did a great job. Finally sorry to all the people we couldn't reach in time and were sent back by the pólice.


RECORD Reviews by Johan (J) and Bart (B).

NIBLICK HENBANE : LAND OF THE BRAVE Headache strikes again with this third Niblick Henbane EP. Original singer Harpo has rejoined the line-up which means more sandpaper vocals. No wimpy shit here - still the same simple rough Oi! song structures of the singalong type. Lyrics cover the usual beer, macho, violence things and in 'America' they make no secret of their love of their country. The list of "acknowledgments" is also worth looking into : fuck you to nazi/white power assholes that give selfrespecting skins like ourselves a bad ñame and raise a mug to our girlfriends for having sex with us (most of the time even willingly!). Again a rnust buy by the ^ NJ kings of Oi! (J) ($5 ppd. : Headache Records, Po Box 204, Midland Park, NJ 07432, USA)

999 : 999 CD This is just 999's first álbum reissued on CD. Stemming from the pub rock scene, they quickly emerged as one of the big ñames in the '77 punk scene, not in the least thanks to manic frontman Nick Cash. After 3 successful singles, their debut álbum followed which received glowing reviews and climbed to No. 53 in the charts. Along with The Buzzcocks they added a lot of poppy elements to their distinct punk sound and in the case of 999 even some new wave. The original vinyl is very hard to find, so better buy it as it is one of the finer moments of what the 70s punk rock explosión had to offer (J) (Dojo Ltd. address elsewhere)

REVIEWS to the word crap. (J) (Dojo Ltd. address elsewhere)

THE NIMRODS : DEMO TAPE Here you have good drunk punk - melody, speed, a primitive garage feel and a great deal of rawness. Vocals are somewhat similar to Screeching Weasel (after a heavy Saturday night with the boys). If they'd live in New Jersey, they would've been picked up by Headache by now, so if you're into that sort of stuff (J) (Mike Schubert, Po Box 1711, Kent, Ohio 44240, USA)

SMEGMA : GEWALT, HAS & WUT EP Another band trying to unite punks 'n' skins and singing about the usual skinhead topics like violence, working class, hating politics, etc. Apparently their message & music has caught on well as their popularity in Germany is growing and they did the support slot on virtually the entire Anti-Heros European tour. Four songs of puré unadulterated Oi!, breaking no new ground at all but at the same time par with most of their 'colleagues'. A fine debut. (J) (Red Rossetten Records address elsewhere)

VANDALEN : VANDALEN CD Although formed in 1984, this is only the band's first full-length álbum but I believe they've broken up a while. It has partly songs from 1987/88, partly new ones. An Oi!/ heavy rock crossover and an odd ska influence, not that much different from Glose Shave (musically that is). I don't know what to make of this. It's well produced, well played but something is lacking. Maybe put a bit more soul into the music or at least let loóse more often. Not to say it's bad, but it's a tad too predictable. (J) (DM 20 + postage : Teenage Rebel Records address elsewhere) '

THE BRATBEATERS : ONE FOR ALL EP I wouldn't cali this '77 punk rock, though definitely rooted in that era - only less surprising & tighter rhythms. Toxic Reasons meets Noise Annoys is perhaps a dodgy description, but it's all I can come up with. One of the better releases of the label. Decent stuff with ' Vioíent Noise' really standing out. (J) (Red Rossetten Records address elsewhere)

V/A : KIDS ON THE STREET LP

The only previously unreleased tracks here come from KLASSE KRIMINALE and ANHREFN I believe. BLITZ keep on living off their oíd Didn't know much about 'this 'band', only after having listened to the CD, I carne to faves with oíd versions of 'Someone's Gonna the conclusión these guys must be the Mace Die', 'Warriors', and ' Never Surrender' . RED Lads of the heavy metal scene. There's ALERT bring two of the best songs off their actually little music present, they seem to new álbum. Furthermore there's SKINKORPS, enjoy swearing & telling silly stories the great BRÜISERS, superb WEST SIDE BOYS, ('Masturbike'} . When they actually take the BECKS PISTOLS, ZAKARRAK, all living up to trouble to use their instruments, it's their reputation, and STRAW DOGS who are either a cross between AC/DC and Status Quo rumoured to feature on a new comp called or annihilations of rock classics like ' White Power Skins'. Dodgy if you ask me. 'Bohemian Rhapsody' (Queen) or ' Pretty Nice art work and a good Oi! /street punk Wornan' (Roy Orbison) . But as I said before, compilation worth picking up if you haven' t it's essentially a collection of crap got the songs somewhere else yet. (J) stories giving a whole new sense of meaning (Bird Records, c/o Laurent Hees, 19 Rué de la Patrotte, 57050 Metz, France)

BAD NEWS : THE CASH IN COMPILATION CD


ATEMNOT : KZ DEÜTSCHLAND EP

EL SMASHO : FOSTER BROOKS

Abrasiva Germán punk that sounds like The Exploited and Blitzkrieg in places. So yeah, early 8Os UK punk is the order of the day here. Thrashy tunes and angry screamed vocals that complain about racism, the government and capitalism. These must be the kind of guys saying 'piss off to every wanker they meet. (J) (Red Rossetten Records, Buchenring 33, 91341 Rottenbach, Germany)

This is El Smasho's third single. The first two are sold out and if they sounded like this one, thumbs up. The three tracks here boíl somewhere between early Black Flag and Life Sentence, and are short enough to keep it interesting and powerful. Power chord driven punk rock, shouted vocals, simple song structures. Although they're stuck in the early 80s hardcore thing, this rocks! Look out for a full-length CD in the near future. (J) (Icón Records address elsewhere)

THE SKATALITES : SKA VOOVEE

CD

Needless to underline The Skatalites' merits in the history of ska. ' Ska Voovee' is their first reléase in over a decade and refers to Cluett Johnson who played bass with Tommy McCook in the 40s and is regarded as the man who invented ska music. Twelve brand new cuts hardly deviating from their 6Os stuff. The dominating horn solos are still there alright. The main difference is they now make use of modern production techniques. Titles like 'Skafrica' , 'Skamaica'' and 'Skalifornia' show evidence of their cosmopolitanism and ' The Don' is a two-part tribute to original trombonist Don Drummond. You know what to expect when acquiring this. Released by Shanachie Records (New Jersey), but Moon are promoting it for them, so better contact : (J) (Moon Records, Po Box 1412, Cooper Station, New York, NY 10276, USA)

EP

DIE KASSIERER : LIVE IM OKIE-DOKIE EP The tape of this gig has apparently reached a cult status in Germany and is now available on vinyl. Nearly 20 minutes of very primitive music, in fact they're anything but skilled musicians. The accent is on the jokes in between the songs, the nursery rhymes, the in-your-face words and sarcasm like in 'Arzarchie und Alkohol' . It all oozes the same atmosphere as on the 'Public Flipper Limited' live álbum by Flipper. Germans will probably get the humour, a waste of plástic for foreigners though. (J) (Teenage Rebel Records address elsewhere)

FUNERAL DRESS : CHAOS IN BELGIÜM

Subtitled 'songs about sex, beer & punk rock' . After one LP & three 7"s in their 9 years of existence so far, Belgium' s most popular punk band comes up with a 2nd álbum 999 : SEPARATES CD (CD-only) which is head and snoulders above There must be a big demand for 999's early their debut álbum. It will appeal to fans of stuff as their second álbum has been re- oíd school & '82 Britpunk and also Oi! boys released on CD as well although this one is will come into their own. Two covers -.'Watch not too rare. They gave the producer from Your Back' (Cock Sparrer) and 'L.S.D.' the self-titled debut álbum the sack and (Chron Gen) plus 14 own compositions firmly Martin Rushent, known for his work with The rooted in that ' 82 sound of medium-paced Stranglers and Buzzcocks, stepped in and his songs with singalong choruses galore. As for inf luence made ' Separatas' harder & more the lyrics, titles like ' Young Punx Go For accessible. It however failed to hit the It' , ' Pogo Nevar Stops' or ' Punk Is Still charts which caused their departure from Alive' are self-explanatory really. Punk as United Artists. 'Homicida' and their tribute fuck, get it now! (J) to the loyal 999 fans ' Feeling Alright With (BF 550/DM 28 ppd from Dirk Peeters, PB 131, The Crew' are probably most popular in punk 2500 Lier, Belgium) circles, songs they still play today. It's NRA * HUMAN ALERT when you hear these oíd gems that you realize 999 nave brought their sound crashing into the 90s without losing one bit of what they were about in 1977, especially on stage. (J) (Dojo Ltd. address elsewhere)

V/A : DIE ZÜMÜTDNG - FRANKEN COLLECTION VOL.4 LP

HIT

The idea here is to spotlight bands that probably haven't released anything on vinyl so far, apart from ATEMNOT whose single is reviewed elsewhere, and therefore a commendable initiative. The music balances between typical Germán punk and simple hardcore, and although it's obvious most bands are still in their infancy, this is the real underground. Nine bands in total : ARTIFACT, HIV POSITIV, JUDGEMENT DAY, SCHADSTOFF, ATEMNOT, BLACK * WOOD * CHERRY * CAKE (what a ñame!), UNTERGANG, FREAKS OF NATURE and KOPFKRIEG. At least half of the 17 tracks deal with anti-racism proving the issue is more urgent than ever among Germán youth. (J) (Red Rossetten Records address elsewhere)

SEX SELLS NRA/HDMAN ALERT : SEX SELLS SPLIT EP Nine half naked men (the band members) adorn the cover, but don't let this put you off riot grrrls (should I write this in capitals?!). We're departing from what matters here : music maestro! NRA is the better of the two, delivering two fast tasty melodic punk numbers - especially the title track is a happy-go-lucky tune. HUMAN ALERT seek it more in the NYHC -style - tempo breaks, harsh vocals, mosh mosh. A good introduction to 2 up-and-coming Dutch bands. (J) (WRF Records, Po Box 39, 1713 ZG Obdam, Holland)


V/A : STAY S.H.A.R.P. VOL.l LP It has taken a long time, but the Spanish anti-racist skinhead álbum is finally here. My personal favourite tracks come from THE NEW APOLLO 7 offering a tune a la Dance Hall Crashers, MR. REVIEW who live up to their high standard, .SKARFACE playing nutty 2Tone, the discovery of this comp SPECIAL BREW (great ska/rocksteady & rap-ish singing) explaining why skinheads & rude boys form the 'No.l Cult' and we couldn't do without NO SPORTS' tribute to the SHARP skins of course. It comes with a booklet which has info on the bands, SHARP contact addresses, newspaper clippings and even a picture of yours truly. Although little unreleased stuff, a cool initiative worth of your support. (J) (1500 Pesetas ppd. from Alfonso Sacristán, Apartado de Correos 35, 40450 Nava de la Asunción (Segovia), Spain) TOO HOT : KICKIN' OFF M-CD Too Hot are an eight piece based in Torbay, South Devon and formed in January '92 with 3 ex-members of Tíghten Up who contributed a song to vol.5 of the ' Skankin Round The World' sampler. Their first 5-track CD of fering starts off with ' Agent 69' , very reminescent of Mark Foggo's Skasters, then ' Fake' has more of a Toasters feel to it and ' Grandad' is a superb dance-inducing number. That's right, mainly speedy modern ska. Five great skanking songs. (J) (G. Hardy, 2 Seymour Villas, Totnes, Devon, TQ9 5QR, England)

popped up. It's much more polished and wellbalanced with slow & fáster songs. Lyrics. above average. Having seen them live recently, I can assure you they' re best experienced live though. (J) (Pork Pie Records, Forster Str. 4/5, 10999 Berlín, Germany) BULLSHIT : UNITED - THE VOICE OF 01! Scandinavian three-piece taking their influence from the early 80s Oi! bands. It's mainly standard Oi! not unlike The Ejected, but also one or two tracks which could be -• described Oi-core like the 100 m.p.h. 'Warning' . The 16 tracks include a rather poor cover of Cock Sparrer's ' Watch Your Back' and an adapted versión of poet Garry Johnson's 'The Volee Of Oi!'. Lyrics cover the skinhead way-of-life and in 'Bonehead' they distance themselves from you know who. Bullshit won't win any prizes for originality, but it's done with such conviction & street feeling that it's difficult not to appreciate their first vinyl effort. (J) (Nighttnare Records address elsewhere) THE GOLDENTONES : IN STEREO EP Five 60s surf instrumentáis. A whole álbum would get annoying, but I can imagine dancing to it at a drunken summer beach party. Don't know anything about this kind of music (apart from the lovely Beach Boys of course) but the press info sheet says The Goldentones list influences from classic surf greats of the sixties to guitar greats of the ninetees mixed with a touch of psychedelia to créate a unique cutting edge surf sound for the 90s. If that sounds cool to ya, why not send for this 7"EP. (J) (Icón Records, Po Box 1746, Royal Oak, MI 48068, USA) *-

KLASSE KRIMINALE : THE HISTORY OF LP Subtitled the collected highs, this is an overview of the 8 years Italy's most popular Oi! band has been kicking around. It contains tracks from both of their full-length alburas, various sampler contributions, early demos ('Odia ti & Fieri' and 'That's Promise'), their debut single 'Costruito In SKARFACE : HOLD UP IN SKACITY CD Italia' (Made In Italy) for which they got Second self-financed CD by these French wrongly labelled right-wing, and a cover of nutters. It continúes where ' Cheap Pounk ' If The Kids Are United' perfectly reflectSkaaaaaa' left off, i.e. bouncy & storming ing what Marco & friends stand for. Hopefuluptempo ska. Their style ranges from the ly the year 2000 will see the reléase of humour of 'Pas D'Chance' (No Luck) to the part 2, until then! In the meantime check more serious issues of songs such as out the brand new KK studio álbum called 'I ' Toujours Eux' (Always Them) . Most songs are Ragazzi Sonó Innocenti' (The Kids Are Insung in their mother tongue and once again nocent) on Twins Records, a new Italian come out incredibly tight. It's not likely label dedicated to Oi!, '77 punk & ska. (J) to set the world on fire, but their enthusi(Nightmare Records, Roermonder StraEe 74, asm & attitude guarantee an all around (2- 41068 Monchengladbach, Germany) Tone) skankfest. (J) (FF 100 ppd. from Skarface, 74 Rué du Fg St LOS FASTIDIOS : OIJ'n'ROLL TAPE Italian scooter/skin band playing a mix of Antoine, 75012 Paris, France) punk rock, Oi! , surf music and rockabilly. THE FRITS : NOT ENOUGH FOR YOU CD Two live tracks and 11 studio recordings, Two 2-Tone legends contributed to The Frits' including a cover versión of 'Surfin' Bird' , new CD, namely Roger Thomas who took care of sung in Italian. The songs talk about alcothe production and Sir Horace Gentleman hol, football, .scooters, vivisection, etc. handling the bass on ' Concrete Jungle' (ex- Can't credit this more than just decent but cellent versión by the way). 'The Snake' is nevertheless another band showing the also being covered indicating the new direc- Italian skinhead scene seems to be very tion these Germán lads have taken. While the healthy these days. (J) 'Little Idiots' álbum was on the jumpy side, (L 10,000 from Enrico De Angelis, Via Milaza lot of reggae, soul and pop elements have zo 1, 37128 Verona, Italy)


MACC LADS : AN ORÍFICE & A GENITAL CD

LA CRY : THE SMELL OF CULTURE... EP

The Macclesfield gang became predictable over the years. Sure they're one of the last real rock'n'roll bands around, but the lyrical inspiration got a bit dry (beer, sex, chips & gravy). This is however an excellent collection of out-takes from 19861991. The music's in the same vein as their debut álbum, rude punk/rock'n'roll and not too much the hard-rock of more recent songs, all accompanied by the known hilarious lyrics. Some of the band's finest moments are captured on this compilation, the titles speak for themselves : ' Monkees' , 'Fat Bastará' , 'No Sheep Til Buxton' , ' Two Stroke Eddie', ' Head Kicked In', 'Brevil Brevil', etc. Not to be missed unless you're a boring prat. (J) (Dojo Ltd., Po Box 281, Canterbury, Kent, CT1 2BB, England)

They thank several bands for inspiration let me take just these three : Motórhead, Ramones and Devil Dogs. In other words a melting pot of mainly punk and some hardrock and riffy rock'n'roll. Definitely a punk spirit as these lads emphasize once again the "ancient punk rule" that three chords are enough. Part of the 333 x üp & Down series. Three short songs full of energy. (J) (Incógnito Records, Hermannstrasse 1, 70178 Stuttgart, Germany)

OXBLOOD : ÜNDER THE BOOT

What can I say about this. If you haven't heard Red Alert before, don't bother to read on. If you're a fan, it's a nice addition to your collection. Three ,oldies recorded live in Mondragon/Spain in June 1992 - two from their debut álbum : the singalong 'It's Me Boys' and 'We've Got The Power' plus their best known song ' In Britain' . Excellent sound quality and the audience nicely participating. Not necessary in my opinión, but at the same time totally harmless. (J) (Capita Swing, Apartat Correos 8041, 08080 Barcelona, Spain)

EP

You're treated what I consider to be the typical New Jersey sound. The Oppressed springs to mind, though it's even more back to basics. Four hard-hitting bootboy anthems angry vocals and deep bass parts. Definitely not for wimpy bastards. What it all comes down to for these lads is...' Oxblood we are here, Come with us, Enjoy the fun, If you don't, You better fucking run'. OK ?! (J) (Headache Records address elsewhere)

CITIZEN FISH : LIVE FISH

LP

All I knew about this band is it's made up of ex-Subhumans members and received rave reviews in various zines. This live LP/CD has been recorded in September '92 in Germany. Just like with The Subhumans, it's still as if singer Dick has an eternal cold in the nose and the music is a kind of punk/ ska crossover. If you own their studio stuff, this must be a nice addition to your Citizen Fish collection. (J) (Red Rossetten Records address elsewhere)

V/A : SKA BOOGIE

CD

Subtitled ' Jamaican R&B - The Dawn Of Ska' , this is a collection of 20 cuts before the first wave of ska though you can understand whythese songs were the foundation of rocksteady/ska. It features famous artists such as Laurel Aitken, Owen Gray, Derrick Morgan, Prince Buster, Byron Lee and ñames that have been forgotten meanwhile like Eric Morris, Lloyd Clarke, etc. Also contains the original versión of ' Oh Carolina' that has recently been recycled into a worldwide No.l hit. Most of the titles are seeing their first reissue of any kind since their original reléase on the Bluebeat label. Twenty sweet jazzy love songs. (J) (Sequel Records address elsewhere)

RED ALERT : LIVE A MONDRAGON

V/A : THE SHACK

EP

CD

21-track CD compiled by Sean Flowerdew, mostly displaying the softer side of ska. It ranges from 60s style (LAUREL AITKEN, HEPCAT) to revival ska (THE TOASTERS, THE HOTKNIVES, BIM SKALA BIM) to bands serving up a ska/funk/rap fusión (RUDER THAN YOU, SEE NO EVIL, MAROON TOWN) to the poppy sounds Of NUTTY BOYS and LOONIE TUNES. Also worth mentioning are the reggae-ish numbers of ex-Specials Lynval Golding and Neville Staples. All in all a well-balanced & recornmendable comp. (J) (Dojo Ltd. address elsewhere)

RICH KIDS : GHOSTS OF PRINCES IN TOWERS After leaving (or did he get the sack ?) the Sex Pistols in February 1977, Glen Matlock formed the Rich Kids.recruiting Midge Ure of Ultravox fame on vocals. They quickly signed KRAPP : YOU DON'T MEAN SHIT TO ME to E.M.I. and the first reléase was the According to the band they mix grind with single 'Rich Kids/Empty Words' which reached early 80s punk & bits of other styles. Won't No.24 in the U.K. charts. They weren't as argüe about that. It's all very primitive, rude & raw as the Pistols, but played some the music as well as the vocals. Good critimemorable gigs like at the second European cal & satiric lyrics. It's recorded live in Punk Festival supporting The Damned and The John's studio, in other words very mediocre Pólice. This CD contains the band's complete sound quality: The more melodic bits show recorded works. There's some very decent they can indeed become the Take That of rock/power pop tunes, it's however the pop punk. (J) punk ones like 'Hung On You' , 'Rich Kids' or ($2 - Europe/$4 - world from Dave Morris, 'Put You In The Picture' that really stand 756 St. Johns Road, Clacton-On-Sea, Essex, out and make this worth buying. (J) C015 2BG, England) (Dojo Ltd. address elsewhere)


SILLY ENCORES : WATER-PISTOL RIOT CD Now this is more like it, absolutely brilliant punk rock from Germany with mid-tempo bits & emotive upbeat vocals, all very harmonious & coming off honest, exciting and fresh. They've been compared to early Mega City Four,.I however feel this doesn't do them justice. Some of the melodies might indeed have a MC4 influence, but Stiff Little Fingers (especially some of the guitar riffs like in '9 to 5') meets power pop is more accurate in my opinión, at least on this second álbum. And with an amazing cover of ' unión City Blue' from that lovely albeit ageing chick Blondie to top it all off, you should get it by now : this fuckin' rips! (J) (DM 20 + postage : Teenage Rebel Records) PUBLIC TOYS : TOTE HELDEN EP The detno tape, of these 5 droogies already showed potential and this really hits the mark. The six songs have everything they need : melody, the right pace, youthful enthusiasm, a little ska influence, all powered by double guitars. Something like Peter & TTB or Major Accident with an extra Oi! injection. Concert promoters also noticed these Germán ' Clockwork Soldiers' as they support touring bands like Boisterous, Chelsea, Blaggers I.T.A., etc. An EP that will definitely appeal to both punks and skins. Buy it! (J) (DM 5 + postage from Teenage Rebel Records, Gerresheimer StraSe 16, 40211 Dusseldorf, Germany)

Mystery 7 (D.C.) and their debut 7" harks back to the glorious área of The Skatalites, Desmond Dekker, etc. ' I'm The King' is a horn laden rocksteady number while the flip side is a relaxed 60s style ska instrumental. Authentic ska lovers, take notice. (J) (Stubborn Records, 504 Grand Street #F 52, New York, NY 10002, USA)

SKINNERBOX NYC : TALES OF THE RED Very hard to describe, so I'm gonna 'steal' some details from the accompanying press info sheet. This is their debut álbum and apparently features an all-star line-up of the New York City underground serving up a hot & tasty 'reggae-funk-jazz-rock soup' and let me add to that a lot of soul as well. Also available from the same label is the follow-up to the álbum, a 7" containing 2 tracks ('Right Side'/'Does He Love You') which are pretty much in the same vein - a kind of reggae/soul fusión. I really don't know what to make of this. Sure it's diverse, there's a competent horn section THE CASUALTIES : 40 OZ. CASDALTY EP but it lacks real punch and I'm wondering NY outfit keeping up America's straight edge what kind of audience this appeals to. tradition...oops wrong review. Actually they Anyway, one of those releases you have to despise S.E., hippie bastards, crusties & check out for yourself. (J) other ' inconveniences' and love punk/Oi!, (Stubborn Records address elsewhere) glue, beer & other 'enjoyable' things. P.C.F. : LOOKING TO THE LEFT 7" Anthemic snotty punk with an Oi! touch, not Damn good first vinyl offering from London unlike Blanks 77 at all. A pogo till you 3-piece Proud City Fathers. No beating puke party! Loud, raw, uncompromising lyrics around the bush, just 2 songs of punchy - definitely unsuitable for cardiacs. It's punk-influenced rock. It's the title track as punk as fuck right down to their that steals the show with its strong guitar Mohicans. Send for it today! (J) work. The great tunes largely make up for ($5 ppd. - Europe from Jorge Herrera, 401 the poor cover art. Get a copy and go & see West 16st., Apt. 3c, New York, NY 10011 USA) ' em at the punk all-dayer over here in TEN CENT FUN : TEN CENT FON CASSETTE September. (J) This 10-piece formed over a year ago and (£2.50 ppd. : Projection Records, Po Box already have a ten-track álbum on offer 3451, London, SW19 6XA, England) (only available on cassette). The music's MAGADOG : TOO MUGE TROUBLE 7" rather difficult to classify which is prob- Debut 7" of a new ska group out of Florida. ably to their credit. With their four-piece Two tracks which are both on the jumpy side horn section, male & female vocals and soul, - sort of a cross between Gángster Fun and dance, jazz & pop influences added to their The Skunks. Easy on the ear songs played ska base, they try to steer clear of the with confidence. A new single should be out typical fast & furious style of ska that is meanwhile, so drop 'em a line. (J) so popular now in America. As for the (Ed Bonjokian, 3007 Swann Ave. #B, Tampa, lyrics, the band put it best themselves : FL 33609, USA) alongside the required happy-go-lucky fun songs, some more pressing concerns about PULL : REGRET EP issues such as procrastination and the home- Don't take my description too serious as less in Uptown Minneapolis are also voiced. these 4 songs of 'progressive hardcore' are A band definitely working hard to develop an way too heavy for these ears. A definite own distinct sound. (J) Killing Joke influence and Helmet is not far (Ten Cent Fun, 1588 Dayton Ave. Apt. 10, away either. Noisy distorted music, crunchy St. Paul, MN 55104, USA) guitars and confusing lyrics, all plunged in an oppressive feeling. Not for the weak of THE INSTEPS : I'M THE KING/THE HEAT heart. (J) The Insteps were born from the ashes of The ($5 ppd. : Stiff Pole Records, Po Box 20721, Percolators, The Skalawags (both NYC) and St. Pete, FL 33742, USA)


PRINCE BUSTER : GREATEST HITS

CD

THE WRETCHED ONES : S/T

The King of Ska who started his career as a security man for Clement Dodd's Downbeat sound system needs no introduction. He scored hit after hit in his 30-year career and was a huge inspiration to the 2-Tone bands. 24 gems are captured on this digitally remastered CD including 'Madaess', ' Judge Dread', 'Al Capone', ' Rough Rider', 'Too Hot' , altogether 72 minutes of puré Jamaican history. The fact that other classics like 'One Step Beyond' or ' Wine & Grima' are absent proves how rich the man's repertory is. Though that's maybe due for a future compilation as the liner notes say this is a mere taster of the treasures from the Melodisc vaults which Sequel will be serving up. (J) (Sequel Records, West Heath Studios, West Heath Yard, 174 Mili Lañe, London NW6 1TB, England)

BRAINDANCE : STREETS OF VIOLENCE

EP

Braindance consists of 3 punks and a skinhead (the singer) and this is reflected in their music which ranges from standard concrete punk to Oi!-ish sounding fare with 'no bullshit' pretentions. This could've easily been put out by the No Future label back in the early 80s. Street level angry lyrics ("they don't like us and we don't fucking care"). Great fold-out sleeve which seems to be the trademark of the Helen Of Oi! releases. For all lovers of '82 Britpunk.(J) (£3 ppd. : Helen Of Oi! Records, Fíat 3, 15 Spring Gardens, Ventnor, Isle Of Wight, POS8 1QX, England)

RHYTHM COLLISION : HOLIDAY

EP

These guys definitely produce quality stuff on a regular basis. This new single continúes where the last álbum left off - infectious speedy hardcore punk with strong melodic vocals and great harmonies. Also, they did a great job on the punk rock verof the 'Cheers' theme tune (which is one of the better soaps in my opinión). It's a benefit for a fellow punk rocker in war-torn Sarajevo, so support this worthy cause. (J) ($5 ppd. : Colusión Records, Po Box 865, Agoura, CA 91376, USA)

CD

\s is what

been waiting for, not those annoying ^ you have to turn over every 3 minutes;. full-length Wretched Ones CeeDee! Á their three-chord street punk anthenu here, i. e. the EPs apart from " Amer, Most Wanted" - going from "Going Down Bar" through "Time Marches On" to "Jo. Burnout" . Destined to become a classic, go for it you punk. (J) (Headache Records address elsewhere)

THE TOASTERS : SKABOOM!

CD

The Toasters have been skankin' round th world since 1984 and to celébrate their 10t¿ anniversary, a collection of early Toasters material is now on sale. It contains the 'Recriminations' EP (1985), 4 tracks off the 1987 'Pool Shark LP and the entire 'Skaboom' álbum. Yes, all the hits are here : 'East Side Beat', 'Matt Davis', 'Run Rudy Run', 'Pool Shark', etc. If you missed out on this first time around, here's your chance! (J) (Moon Records address elsewhere}

THOMPER : ANOTHER DAY

M-CD

Imagine The Mighty Bosstones more emphasiz ing the ska parts and without the harsh voc ais and you come pretty cióse to Thumper's sound. Heavy guitars mixed with irresistible horn lines (for which 2 members of Bim Skala Bim are partly responsible) . An obstínate cover of Ozzy Osbourne's ' Crazy Train' and 2 other greats point to a bright future for Thumper. I'm not sure it will oblitérate musical boundaries, but it is fun to listen to. (J) (Deer Hunter Music, 62 Powder House Blvd. Somerville, MA 02144, USA)

RHYTHM COLLISION : GIRL WITH THE... The punk rock rnarket keeps being flooded with RC releases - even 2 reviews in one issue of Skoink! As long as they sound like this, keep them coming. Two punchy straightforward guitar driven tunes, still á la Screeching Weasel plus their versión of Fine Young Cannibal' s ' She Orives Me Crazy' . No, not just another cover, they simply murder it in a punky way. Do the right thing and get this piece of wax. (J) ($5 ppd : Stiff Pole Rec. address elsewhere)

RADICAL RETARD : ONCE I WOKE UP

THE EXCEPTIONS : FLOWERING SCRDNCH 7" Nine piece ska band hailing from Michigan. Two offerings coming across as a mixture of Gángster Fun and The Mighty Bosstones. The A-side is an instrumental of hybrid power ska with a very tight & overpowering horn section. The flip is a tad mellower, probably just because the vocalist is on duty here. Cool cover artwork & slick packaging. Effective reléase by this rising band who have a CD coming out soon on the same label. I'm curious. (J)

CD

Holland's answer to NoFx with some metal guitars a la Mucky Pup thrown in. Still a good emphasis on melody and pretty compact which makes it enjoyable to listen te, There's nothing exceptionally new here, but it's done in such a tight & convincing form that I can't help classifying it 'above average'. (J) (Dave Robinson, Sluishoofd 50, 3961 KW Wijk Bij Duurstede, Holland)

FLATUS : BUDGET BEER

EP

Although hailing from New Jersey, no typical 'Headache' sound here. Rather snappy, nervous punk .rock in the Ramones vein. Poppy tunes performed with an energetic punk spirit really. Includes a cover of The Cars ('Just What I Needed') . They show how ínteresting & diverse the music scene in that área is. (J) (Address : see ad)


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Profile for SHARP Benelux

Skoink nº 10 (1994)  

A follower was kind enough to send us this (and allowed us to re-publish) Belgian zine from 1992. We hope this upload works, tell us if it d...

Skoink nº 10 (1994)  

A follower was kind enough to send us this (and allowed us to re-publish) Belgian zine from 1992. We hope this upload works, tell us if it d...

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