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Penny Rimbaud - What Passing Bells

AHEAD OF THE release of Penny Rimbaud’s What Passing Bells, a reading of the war poems of Wilfred Owen set to an original musical soundtrack, on the One Little Indian label in November, Patrick Clarke of The Quietus discusses Rimbaud’s views on Owen’s poetry; the process of developing the studio recording; and his perspectives on politics and culture, both contemporary and historic.

In a new short documentary, Noisey invites Rimbaud to reflect further on the power of Owen’s words and the relationship between his own personal and political history and his musical and philosophical worldview.

Patrick Clarke. 2017. ‘Interview: Penny Rimbaud on Wilfred Owen’, The Quietus, 27 September. http://thequietus.com/articles/23279-penny-rimbaud-wilfred-owen-what-passing-bells-interview

 

Noisey. 2017. ‘Get Out of Your Own Way: Anarchy & Peace with Penny Rimbaud of Crass’

THE MIDLANDS PUNK Rock Video team took the opportunity of Conflict’s recent Derby gig to grab an interview with Colin Jerwood of Conflict

Colin Jerwood of anarcho punks Conflict took the time to speak with Shell after their set at Punks Against Cancer 5 in Derby, England on 15 July 2017. They discuss the aborted 2017 US tour, the current political climate and the New World Order, lineup changes and their set at Punk Rock Bowling in the US. All to the backdrop of Dragster playing onstage as Colin and Shell sat chatting backstage. Best watched in full HD!

Many more band interviews are available from the MPRV team, including recent meet-ups with Steve Ignorant and Icons of Filth amongst numerous others.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RLIR0u9T2ks

Matthew Worley - No Future - book launch


Matthew Worley. 2017. No Future: Punk, Politics and British Youth Culture, 1976-1984. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Matt Worley will be in conversation with Steve Ignorant, formerly of legendary punk band Crass. Chair: Cathi Unsworth. DJ set by Tim Wells.
Tuesday 17 October 2017, 19:00
Rough Trade East
Old Truman Brewery
91 Brick Lane
London E1 6QL

19:00 – On-stage “in-conversation” + audience questions // 20:00 – Book signing + Tim Wells DJ set // 21.00 – close.

‘No Feelings’, ‘No Fun’, ‘No Future’. The years 1976–84 saw punk emerge and evolve as a fashion, a musical form, an attitude and an aesthetic. Against a backdrop of social fragmentation, violence, high unemployment and socio-economic change, punk rejuvenated and re-energised British youth culture, inserting marginal voices and political ideas into pop. Fanzines and independent labels flourished; an emphasis on doing it yourself enabled provincial scenes to form beyond London’s media glare. This was the period of Rock Against Racism and benefit gigs for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and the striking miners. Matthew Worley charts the full spectrum of punk’s cultural development from the se Sex Pistols, Buzzcocks and Slits through the post-punk of Joy Division, the industrial culture of Throbbing Gristle and onto the 1980s diaspora of anarcho-punk, Oi! and goth. He recaptures punk’s anarchic force as a medium through which the frustrated and the disaffected could reject, revolt and re-invent.

Pre-order a copy of No Future by Matt Worley | Pre-order a copy of References by Steve Ignorant

IN THIS MONTH’S edition of Wire magazine, Penny Rimbaud is invited to identify and comment on a series of recordings from an ‘invisible jukebox’ compiled by Phil England.

Phil England [testing Penny Rimbaud]. 2017. ‘Invisible Jukebox’. Wire, No 404, October, pp.24-27.

Each month we play a musician or group a series of records which they are asked to comment on – with no prior knowledge of what they are about to hear. This month it’s the turn of Penny Rimbaud. Will the veteran anarchist find The Wire‘s mystery collection crass?

Rimbaud - Wire - October 2017

CRASS ARE THE subject of the ‘Hello / Goodbye’ feature in the back-end of the November edition of Mojo magazine.

Roy Wilkinson [in conversation with Penny Rimbaud]. 2017. ‘Penny Rimbaud and Crass’, Mojo, November, p.138

CRASS FEATURE IN the one-page ‘Hello / Goodbye’ feature in the current issue of Mojo magazine. Based on an interview with Penny Rimbaud, Wilkinson compares how Rimbaud now describes his original expectations of forming Crass (‘Hello’, 1977) with his current reflections on the drivers of Crass’ endgame (‘Goodbye’, 1984).

Penny Rimbaud and Crass - Mojo - October 2017

The Cravats being excited about Dustbin of Sound

Review: The Cravats. 2017. Dustbin of Sound. Overground Records. Over157 LP | Over157 CD

I’VE HAD THE good fortune to see the reformed and rejuvenated Cravats perform live twice in the last few years. On both occasions, they’ve been extraordinary and utterly compelling.

At Steve Ignorant’s Last Supper gig in London in November 2011, The Cravats took to the stage in front of an audience so densely packed together you’d have to conclude that the venue’s published 2k capacity was, in practice, a “minimum occupancy” requirement. Completely unphased by the stature of the event, The Cravats began with a mesmerising version of “Rub Me Out”, the opening salvo in an explosive set. The band took the place by the scruff of the neck and didn’t relinquish the hold until they had delivered their closing declaration of intense dislike for the universe.

As the headliners to Vi Subversa’s Naughty Thoughts in Brighton in December 2015, The Cravats were no less insistent in front of an intimate club audience. The swirling, seething indignation of “When Will We Fall” was a highlight in a riveting set that blended numbers old and new.

They might have put “it” down for a while, during the “Cravatless times” after the band went on indefinite hiatus in the mid-1980s (evolving into several successor outfits) before the 2009 reunion, but seeing The Cravats on stage again now is immediate, visceral confirmation that The Shend and his fellow troubadours have picked “it” up again and fully intend to bash anyone within reach around the ears with it.

In the last 12 months, The Cravats have become something of a vinyl generating machine. Impressive and well-received new singles Jingo Bells and Blurred have now been followed in short order by the band’s first album in 37 years: clear evidence of the band’s renewed surge of confidence and creativity.

With more than three decades in which to prepare, it’s fair to say that expectations are running high. Being The Cravats, the only proper way to reset the preconceptions of others is to select a suitably self-deprecating title for the album. Dustbin of Sound is, as you would expect, anything but a trashcan of discarded, cast-off noises. It is in fact a carefully crafted selection of the stuff that The Cravats (as this release attests) still do so well: musical and lyric creations that are inventive, unexpected, powerful, that little bit weird and unsettling, and delivered with a distinctive, off-kilter sense of panache that remains the band’s signature.

Dustbin of Sound is anything but a trashcan of discarded, cast-off noises. It is in fact a carefully crafted selection of the stuff that The Cravats still do so well

Events begin with scowling, soaring “King of Walking Away”, the fractious and punchy “Batterhouse”, and the disarmingly retro “Motorcycle Man”. Rampton Garstang on drums and Joe 91 on bass make for a formidably tight and accomplished rhythm section, while Viscount Biscuits power-drives his guitar through the twists and turns of every arrangement, dropping out and then surging back in as needed. Svor Naan writes such original and inspired parts for saxophone and clarinet you can’t help but wonder if he’s got some sort of special licence, while throughout The Shend sings, shouts, whispers, and threatens to assail you with a spoken word vocal; sometimes all within the confines of a single song. In the mix, there are moments of jazz-infused switcheroos, hints of The Birthday Party, and echoes of mid-period Dead Kennedys, but mostly there’s a hearty dose of the work of those peerless Cravats boys.

There genuinely isn’t a weak track amidst the 13 that make up the album. It’s therefore difficult to pick favourites, but for this reviewer the shortlist would include the high-amped “Power Lines”; the disconcertingly marvellous “Bury the Wild”, with its wildly upbeat bridge linking the verse to the rumbling, grumbling chorus; and the caustically catchy “Hang Them”.

The Cravats have always been more at home with the Dadaist, semi-surrealist reading of the anarchist idea than with the polemics of Bakunin or Murray Bookchin. You’ll search in vain for singalong slogans or simple wave-fist-in-air issue cues in a Cravats song. The Cravats’ anarchism is more artistically rooted and instinctive than that, although you’re never left in doubt about their clear political affinities. The Shend remains as capable as ever of penning a witty, acerbic or comedic (but always insightful) lyric about some aspect or other of the absurdities of life lived in a state of unfreedom. (So we’ll allow him the stream of disassembled lyrical ridiculousness in “All U Bish Dumpers”).

Dustbin of Sound is exemplary Cravats’ work. The sound mix is muscular and clean, lighting up a band on razor-sharp form; in both the songwriting and performance stakes. This is a more than fitting follow-up to 1980’s The Cravats in Toytown and 1986’s The Colossal Tunes Out, a set of top tunes that deserve to blare out from tannoy systems and other sound devices across the land. In terms of satisfying unmet musical desires, a new Cravats album is the very thing. Let’s just agree that we won’t have to wait another forty years for the next one.

Dustbin of Sound is released on 29 September 2017, and is available for pre-order from the Overground Records site.

The Cravats - Dustbin of Sound - The Shend is flying

The Cravats. 2017. Dustbin of Sound. Overground Records. Over157 LP / Over157 CD

  • In the UK, you can enjoy tracks from The Cravats session for BBC 6’s Mark Riley show (18 September 2017), previewing songs from Dustbin of Sound (“Bury the Wild”, “Hang Them” and “Batterhouse”) on the BBC iPlayer Radio service until 21:00 on 18 October 2017.

All Around Was Darkness - front cover

THE NEWLY PUBLISHED ANTHOLOGY, And All Around Was Darkness is “the third in the Tales from the Punkside series; a collection of books whose main concern is to provide a space for stories, anecdotes and various other shenanigans by those persons rarely heard – the fans and everyday participants in the punk movement.”

Published by Itchy Monkey Press, the book is A4 size, 288 pages, and full to bursting with essays, reflections, memories, photographs, flyers, poems and drawings. The first edition is a limited run of 100 copies, and can be ordered for £12.00 (plus £3.00 p&p, in the UK) via Paypal. Contact Mike Dines to confirm order and arrange payment.

Greg Bull and Mike Dines (eds.). 2017. All Around Was Darkness. Itchy Monkey Press. ISBN 978-1-291-74025-7

Contents

  • Introduction, Mike Dines
  • So You Joined a Band to Change the World, Gregory Bull
  • Recording No Doves/Laughing, Mark Wilson
  • Confessions of a Pre-Teen Punk, Chris Low
  • The Girl in the Band, Kathy Freeman
  • Anarcho-Feminism and Greenham Common, Lucy Robinson
  • Tales From the Ghost Town, Alan Rider
  • “No, It’s a Zine, Not a ‘Fan’ Zine”, Anth Palmer
  • Punk in Norway, Viggo Mastad
  • Should We Help the Miners?, Andy Hardcore
  • Poems, TS Paviour
  • The Mob Touring Finland (2016), Antti Lautala
  • Crass, Graham Burnett
  • Green Anarchist, Graham Burnett
  • Hyper-Active as the Day is Long, Neil Transpontine
  • A Woman in a Male Dominated Industry, Gail Thibert
  • Notes Written on a Tattered Page, Nick Hydra
  • Tales of a Teenage Punk, Andy Owen
  • How Much Longer?, Russ Bestley
  • Increasingly Right Wing, Ted Curtis
  • Fifteen Shades of Grey, Rich Cross
  • When John Met Clem, Rich Cross
  • The Stranger in the Pit, Francis Stewart
  • The Mother of all Soapy Stamp Stories, Phil Hedgehog Tonge
  • Amebix Art, Jonny R
  • Stopping the City – A Micro Memory, Stephen Spencer-Fleet
  • Smash the System, Persons Unknown
  • ‘Running Wild in the Disco’, Mike Dines

All Around Was Darkness - front and back cover

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