U.K. Subs play The Charlotte, Leicester, England

Line up:
Charlie Harper – vocals
Alan Campbell  – guitar
Clara – bass
Jay – drums

  • Below: Pictures from this gig by Daniel Attenborrow




Leicester, Charlotte (17/12/05)

Having been bored to tears reading the same kiss ass reviews on Punk/Oi - I thought I'd try my hand at typing something up. I mean nothing is ever 'shit' according to your 2 reviewers?? - I have seen loads of bands recently who have been dire yet praised amongst your pages IE Subhumans / Poundaflesh / Broken Bones etc - Sounds like someone 'bigging' them up to get in free. So.....

I hadn't been to 'The Charlotte' before and found it to be a very impressive venue in a central location. First band of the day were 'homies' Barnyard Masturbator. These 2 chicks and Frankenstein on guitar had pulled a fair crowd, and I don't mean people expecting to win a goldfish with the throw of a ping-pong ball !! Despite the lack of a bassist they threw themselves into songs like "Losers" (Dedicated to all the bands mentioned above) and a couple of odd but very listenable covers in GG's "Bite It" & the classic "Team America - World Police" from the film of the same name. The locals lapped it up and went mad. BYM had obviously bought a stack of people with them. The yank singer from LA lives in Leicester - ?!?!?! She has a fine set of lungs on her if you know what I'm saying ....!!??! It was good to see a female on drums 'giving it some' as well, and the guitarist certainly knows how to play. 8 songs is hardly a set though ladies. Blink and they were gone. Worth watching again though me thinks.

The crowd thinned as much a Knox Vibrators hair for 'Small Print' - A bunch of 20 something's who supplied more covers than 'Bed City' - The crowd slowly came back to hear the classics "New Rose" etc - Even I was weaned off the bar. I tried hard to resist as I dug my heels in but no... my sanity was almost out the window and I joined the merry throng at the front. It was nice to hear "Art School" by The Jam gobbed out with added Leicester phrase "Me Duck" added for Christmas effect.

Penultimate band was 'The Vibrators' - Drummer Eddie is still a prize plank. Jumping on his stool for 'Baby Baby' and asking 40 year old people to wave their arms about to this ballad.This was a pub in Leicester - Not Wembley Stadium!! I feel front man Knox is a clone. The original singer must have died years ago. The new version never speaks and just goes through the punk rock motions. It's a robot! That hat he has worn for years has failed to leave his head despite the deportation order against it. After 35 minutes it happened. A first for me at a Vibes gig. Was it just the magic of Xmas or the average 10 pints each person in the 200 strong audience had supped??? The Vibrators were called back for an encore!!!! Maybe it was a trap......It wasn't. 3 more songs 'the hits' and they were gone like Gazza. Predictable, but foot tappingly annoying. Please do not offer this band a record contract!!

UK Subs are touring in support of their 87th live album out of their 239 albums released. Still despite the mans age Mr Harper never fails to deliver. He still bounces around like a pissed up Mexican jumping bean. He has had more members than a German porn starlet. In the band of course... I noticed that he has had more people in the band than he has wrinkles and at 103 years of age...that's a lot of wrinkles. You know what they are going to play, but somehow with the Subs it doesn't matter. The place erupted like a riot in a mental institution for 'Stranglehold' - It was like 50 people had stepped on a landmine as limbs flew all over the place and bodies hit the floor in the pit. A great performance yet again from the grandfather of punk.

£ 5 in (thanks BYM) - What a bargain. The xmas sales had started early in Leicester. Great night out.

Reviewed by The Reverend



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