U.K. Subs play The Barfly in Cardiff, Wales

Line up:

Charlie Harper – vocals & harmonica
Jet – guitar
Alvin Gibbs – bass
Jamie Oliver – drums

The following review appeared on the R*E*P*E*A*T online fanzine website by BONES



UK Subs / Guns on the Roof
Cardiff Barfly, 25.6.08

On a wet May night in 1979 I first saw the UK Subs at the now long gone Cardiff Top Rank. The gig was memorable if for no other reason that the over zealous security staff made punters remove their Doc Martens before entering in attempt to stamp out the violence that was fast enveloping the punk music scene. Fast forward 29 years to the subterrean cavan that is Cardiff Barfly and I have no such problems entering tonight, albeit in some ways nothing much else has changed for the Subs in the intervening time. Despite the ever revolving line up of members there is always one constant, step forward Mr David Charles Perez a.k.a. Charlie Harper (64 year old punk rocker of this parish). Its good to see that there is large crowd to welcome the Subs back to Cardiff for the first time in a couple of years.

That was then...

I arrive in time to see support band Guns On The Roof, who with a name like that, I always presumed were a Clash tribute band, but no, they are a band in their own right. Hailing from Leeds, their sound might not be anything original, but they appear to have boundless energy and whip up a fair old storm. The lead singer leaves the stage on several occasions to literally get “up close and personal” with the audience, and any punk band that includes a cover of Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire” in their set has got to be worthy of note. They play the Rebellion Festival in August, so if you’re going you could do worse than check them out. http://www.myspace.com/gunsontheroofuk

Guns on the Roof

Then onto the stage amble the headliners. Now lets be honest here, a fair proportion of the audience is probably in their mid to late 40's (me included) and know exactly what they want to hear tonight. Yeah, we'll accept the odd new number, but what we really want is a set list culled from the first 3 three albums (or maybe 4 at a push).

And did Charlie and the boys disappoint? Did they fuck !!!

This is now...

Straight into Young Criminals, Kicks and New York State Police without pausing for breath. The line up might not be the "classic" that appears at bigger events, but Jet is a more than competent guitarist, whilst Alvin Gibbs has played with the Subs on-and-off since the early '80's so knows his stuff, and Jamie Oliver was "cooking" up a mean backbeat. These boys make a one hell of a racket, and in quick succession comes Emotional Blackmail, Left for Dead, Rockers, Crash Course, Endangered Species and Tomorrows Girls. Its only when seeing them live do you realise how many great punk rock songs Charlie Harper has written. There's a brief rest bite of a few lesser known numbers, then back to the full on assault of Teenage, Warhead (complete with an accapella crowd sing a long), Riot and finally Stranglehold rounded off the night. A brief minute off stage preceded the inevitable encore and back they came to finish with a bang with Barbie is Dead, CID and Live in a Car. Great band, great music, great night. Charlie Harper I salute you a true punk rock legend!



Support from Guns on the Roof, Haddonfield. Thanks to Rob Jones for the info, he has also supplied the set list info:

Cardiff Barfly 25/06/2008:
Young Criminals
NY State Police
Emotional Blackmail
Left For Dead
Endangered Species
Crash Course
Tomorrows Girls
Live in a Car
Down on the Farm
Party in Paris
Interestingly the chords are hand written by the side of each song (e.g. Kicks - D, GB/EB, C# A B). I am pretty sure they ran out of time and didn't do the second encore.


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