Captain Sensible, Viv Albertine, punk music news


This video (audio really) says about itself:

Captain Sensible – Talks about The Damned, Punk, Keep ‘Em Alive & more – Radio Broadcast 12/09/2020

Captain Sensible talks about New Rose, Touring, Punk Movement, Sex Pistols, The Damned, Rockfield Studios, [new single] Keep ‘Em Alive, Bees and Eloise.

Also news about Viv Albertine, formerly Slits guitarist.

By Madison Bloom, September 1, 2020:

Viv Albertine’s Memoirs to Be Adapted for Television

Based on the former Slits member’s two books: Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys. and To Throw Away Unopened

Karlsen, Woolley, and Horovitz added: “What an exciting and exhilarating prospect to re-explore a time when music, fashion, political ideologies and sexuality were turned on their heads. So beautifully evoked alongside personal insights and frank reflections of an extraordinary woman’s life in Albertine’s two incredible memoirs.”

Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys. focused on Albertine’s experiences as a part of the 1970s punk scene in London, where she made history as a guitarist for the Slits, while also befriending members of the Sex Pistols, the Clash, and more. To Throw Away Unopened delves more into the author’s family relationships and personal life.

Rock Against Racism on film


This May 2020 video says about itself:

LIVING ROOM Q&As: White Riot with director Rubika Shah and host Mark Kermode

The 13th in this season does something a little different… As well as a live Q&A with director Rubika Shah, Mykaell Riley (Steel Pulse) and Zak Cochrane (Love Music Hate Racism), hosted by Mark Kermode, we’ll also have a live musical performance from rapper Lloyd Luther.

On 19 September 2020, I went to see the film White Riot. It is about the late 1970s Rock Against Racism movement in England.

There was the racist neo-nazi National Front party. There was police racism. And there was racism by established rock musicians like Eric Clapton.

The film is extensively about Temporary Hoarding fanzine of Rock Against Racism. There was no internet then. It helped bring together fans of mainly black reggae and ska bands, and of punk bands, to fight racism together.

At the very first Rock Against Racism concert, punk band 999 played.

It made Jamaican British reggae musicians feel they were not alone in their fight against police brutality.

Punks also benefited. Many English local councils banned punk concerts. RAR concerts were sometimes the only way for punk bands to play there.

Not only African Caribbean people were targeted by racism. So were South Asian immigrants. Punk was sometimes depicted as a purely white movement. Wrong. There was the Pakistani London band Alien Kulture, featured in the film. Their name was derived from a dog whistle racist quote by Conservative party leader Margaret Thatcher. Alien Kulture played a bit Clash-like songs.

This is their 1979 song Asian Youth.

This is their song Airport Arrest, with lyrics.

Also in the film is Somali British singer Poly Styrene and her band X-ray Spex. Very correctly so, as she played a big role in breaking down racist and sexist prejudices.

I had hoped very much to see the London band Verdict in the film. They played scores of gigs for Rock Against Racism all over London. Two girls in that band had been founding members of the first punk band of France, also the first-ever all-women rock band in whatever genre in France: the Lou’s. These two were Eurasian Dutch drummer Sascha de Jong and French saxophone player Raphaelle Devins. In 1981, in Leiden, the Netherlands, Sascha founded the Miami Beach Girls. Raphaelle became saxophone player in Cheap ‘n’ Nasty.

The film concludes with a big anti-racist concert in London, in which Jimmy Pursey of Sham’69 joined the Clash in singing White Riot.

Dutch daily Trouw wished that the film, about the late 1970s in England, had shown more links to 2020 issues. Though the last lines of the film warn that the anti-racist fight cannot be over yet.

Women in Indonesian punk rock


This 2016 video says about itself:

A documentary about women in the Indonesian Hardcore/Punk scene.

Now with English subtitles.

My Indonesian correspondent Ari writes today:

The involvement of women has been quite strong in Indonesia, but it’s hard to generalize across the board. For example, the straight-edge punk scene might have fewer women involved as musicians

That may be the case in various countries, maybe because of Christian right or Hare Krishna fundamentalist religious influences in straight-edge.

whereas the crust punk scene might have more female singers.

And then there will be variations across the localities, too; Jakarta vs. Bandung vs. Yogyakarta vs. Padang.

But since I have been out of Indonesia since 2009, I cannot give you a fair assessment of the scenes. There is a documentary made by Indonesian punk women about women in the Indonesian punk scenes called Ini Scene Kami Juga (This is Our Scene, Too/ 2016). What I can tell you is that there have been prominent women in the (DIY) punk scenes such as Kartika Jahja (singer of the band The Dissidents) who also contributed to the edited anthology Revenge of the She Punks (2019).

Indonesian punk band plays traditional Indonesian instruments


This 2016 music video from Indonesia says about itself (translated):

PUNKLUNG (Punk Calung)

PUNKLUNG (Punk Calung) a music group from Cicalengka, Bandung Regency, a fusion of two cultures as a representation of “Music Without Borders”.

With the vision and mission of “having a critical spirit but still preserving the traditions of our ancestors” so as not to let them become extinct, let alone claimed by others!

Song – Blood Juang

Written by PUNKLUNG

A calung is a bamboo tube xylophone used in Indonesian music of Sundanese (west Java), Javanese (central and east Java) and Balinese (Bali island) language regions.

A west Javanese angklung is not an expensive instrument. So, comparatively accessible to Indonesian punk musicians, most of whom do not have much money.

My Indonesian correspondent Ari wrote:

There’s a band from my hometown [in west Java] that incorporated angklung (bamboo xylophone-like instruments) as their main instruments: PUNKLUNG (Punk Calung). They sing in Sundanese, which is our local language, different from the Indonesian language.

There is a kind of parallel with the Irish Pogues, with influences from both punk rock and Irish folk music.

Indonesian traditional music genres have maybe the biggest variety in xylophone-like instruments in the world. Eg, in gamelan ensembles. With Balinese gamelan traditionally being faster than Javanese gamelan, so maybe a bit more reminiscent of punk rock.

Remember the xylophone in Hong Kong Garden by Siouxsie and the Banshees from Britain.

Another Punklung music video says about itself (translated):

Punklung is a punk community that aims to preserve regional culture, especially in West Java. Punklung was formed by Iday, Dempak, Somad, Demok, Putih, and Adi based on motivation to rebuild the local culture. In achieving its goals, the community, which was founded in 2000, uses acculturation of punk and Sundanese culture in its performances. Apart from the genre of punk music with a fast and stomping beat, Punklung also performed social and political-themed songs to show punk culture to the wider community.

English punk girls Maid of Ace, new single


This 28 August 2020 punk rock music video from England says about itself:

“LIVE FAST OR DIE” performed by “Maid Of Ace

The third single & title track off their new album, OUT NOW!

As you can see in the video of this new single, the four Maid of Ace sisters are from Hastings on the English south coast.

British Ramonas play Ramones and own songs


This 28 August 2020 punk rock music video from Britain says about itself:

The RamonasRebellion Punk Festival 2020 (online stream [because of COVID-19])

Havana Affair (Ramones)
Bonzo Goes To Bitburg (Ramones)
Our World (Ramonas)
2016 (£**k Thi$) (Ramonas)

Threatened bees, new The Damned song


This 14 Augustus 2020 punk rock music video from England says about itself:

The Damned – Keep ’em Alive

Taken from The Rockfield Files, the EP available October 16

LYRICS
The summer breeze caresses the leaves, in webs spiders sway
and is this rain comes pouring down or some other spray?

The flowers bloom the crickets chirp and a sparrow calls
Amongst the trees where once were bees there’s no buzz at all

I guess it’s all of us now trying just to keep it alive
In cities nothing but a concrete zoo
Where once it would’ve been nature’s call how many creatures survive
We haven’t got a clue

I guess we know the consequences If we don’t keep em alive
When bees stop buzzing there’s no bread for us to chew
When the cork’s back in the bottle maybe nature will thrive
Then life will start anew

Follow The Damned here.

Siouxsie and the Banshees, a Goth band?


This live music video is the song Israel, by Siouxsie and the Banshees, with then John McGeoch on guitar.

That song was also the first song when they played in 1981 near the Waal river in Tiel in the Netherlands. Maybe one of the best gigs ever. The second part of the concert is here.

An exclusive Banshees interview from that time, only published now, is here.

Siouxsie Sioux, when interviewed, has always protested if her Banshees were called a Goth band.

Is she right?

Let us hear the Banshees song Israel again. This time, a live cover version by Closterkeller.

Undoubtedly, a Goth band. The best known Goth band from Poland.

Singer Anja Orthodox of Closterkeller seems to me to be a nice woman who can sing reasonably well.

However, compare them to the Banshees live video.

And then, you will hear the difference. Anja maybe sings too nicely. A proper performance of a punk song should have drive and tension. Tension, eg, between very serious subjects like (nuclear) war and societies ruled by money (X-ray Spex lyrics) and on the other hand: everyone has fun while pogoing. In the case of Siouxsie, there is tension between the suggestion of erotic attraction and the suggestion of possible danger. Does a leopardess lie in ambush to devour all of me?

That tension is lacking in the Closterkeller cover version. It is not in the singing. The Closterkeller keyboard player plays competently. But not on the level of John McGeoch’s guitar. The drummer, compared to the Banshees’ Budgie: idem. Bass: idem.

Then, there is this cover version of Israel by Scottish Goth band Gothzilla. The singer sounds like he is not interested in the song. If this song has to be sung by a male singer, then I think the male lead vocalist of Dutch ‘bridge between punk and post-punk’ band Cheap’n’Nasty might have sung it with more drive and passion. And the female lead vocalist/bass player of Cheap’n’Nasty might have blown the cover versions by Closterkeller and Gothzilla completely offstage. However, Cheap’n’Nasty never played a Banshees cover song.

Another Scottish band, Lizzie and the Banshees, I think, is better at playing Siouxsie songs than Gothzilla.

Israel is an intense song about an area at war. Jewish Israelis, Palestinian Israelis, West Bank Palestinians, Gaza Palestinians, Lebanese etc. are permanently endangered by bombs which may kill them. To survive, the lyrics say, they sing. A bit comparable to a Syrian death metal band which keeps playing in the midst of war.

Siouxsie sang that song with a Palestinian headdress and an Israeli star T-shirt on.

I regret that in Goth cover versions of the song Siouxsie’s intensity disappears.

I don’t know whether Closterkeller or Gothzilla ever tried Banshees songs, heavier and faster than Israel, like Sin in my heart or Love in a void. Then, I suspect, the difference would have been even clearer.

Many punk bands can keep their drive and tension only while playing fast songs. Exceptions, also in slower songs: the Banshees, really always. Adam and the Ants, sometimes. UK Subs, sometimes. Buzzcocks: what a pity, their fast songs are so great, but … The song I’m a photo model on the Cheap’n’Nasty EP holds up, maybe unexpectedly to some people for a band on their own independent label, very well.

British girl punk rockers Ramonas, live video


This 18 Augustus 2020 music video from Britain says about itself:

The Ramonas – Pinhead Diary 2020

The Ramonas – Pinhead Diary 2020 – clips from our tour before the pandemic hit.

As the name suggests The Ramonas are an all-female tribute to the iconic New York Punk Rock band Ramones.

Originally conceived back in 2004 with multiple different lineups, The Ramonas have evolved into a fully-fledged, razor-sharp live band in their own right! Touring, Touring is never boring and these girls are guaranteed to play high energy, full throttle one-hour shows that’ll leave you buzzing for more of that 1976 spirit. These four lovable cretins rarely even stop for a quick sip of water and a hello…. It’s 1234 and they’re onto the next hit, and the great thing is that they do it all in their own unique way…. wherever they play, from the UK to Europe to the USA!

Some say playing the Ramones tunes is easy, but capturing the vibe and essence of such a well-loved band mixed with the required speed, stamina and endurance is no mean feat.. Cloey, Pee Pee, Rohnny & Cammy are definitely here to stay! Gabba Gabba HEY!!!

‘Since 2016 the girls have also been releasing their own original material that has received rave reviews. Their debut EP ‘You Asked For It’ (2016), debut album ‘First World Problems’ (2017) and follow up releases ‘Acoustic Problems’ (2019) and ‘I Want to Live in Outer Space’ (2020) are available to stream & download on all the usual platforms!

Over 250 female-fronted punk rock songs


This is a list of 291 female-fronted punk rock songs on video, from several countries, recorded from 1977-1989.

Of course, not exhaustive. This one from 1981, eg, fits in.

Daughters of chaos: Patti Smith, Siouxsie Sioux and the feminisation of rock: here.