The Mob: Rise Up! / There’s Nothing You’ve Got I Want – single review

The Mob

The Mob – Rise Up!/There’s Nothing You’ve Got I Want (All The Madmen – MAD23)

7″ / DL

Release date – August 2013

Cult anarcho-punk band The Mob return with their first slab of vinyl in 30 years.

I was really chuffed to get the opportunity to review a Mob 7 inch but I have to admit that I was filled with trepidation before listening to this new double A-side from All The Madmen.  I can still remember the tingle down my spine when I first heard The Mob’s “Witch Hunt” back in about 1980/81. And having seen The Mob’s reformation gig a couple of years ago and a few more excellent performances since, I was concerned: 30 years on, could they still put together songs that sound like The Mob or would the passage of time make for a different sound? Or worse still would they just sound dated and as if they are trying to recreate something no longer relevant?

Well I am happy to report that the boys done good. “Rise Up” could easily have come from one of their early singles or the “Ching” tape – but whilst it sounds familiar, with a topical subject matter and the benefits of a modern recording it sounds fresh.   This song has the jarring guitar of “Witch Hunt” and Curtis’ driving bass is reminiscent of songs like “What’s Going On?” and “White N***ers”.  Mark’s distinctive vocals pour out genuine anger against rulers worldwide: “Many palaces have tumbled, many walls have been knocked down, and many more will fall, many more will lose the ground.  They’ll pretend to understand and they’ll make a few amends but we’ve seen it all before and we’re not taking it again”.  I’m not sure if that’s a call to arms or just reportage about what’s been kicking off around the world in recent years and to be honest, it doesn’t matter.  The message is the same: Rise Up!

Powered along by Graham’s tribal drumming , as the song draws to a close the chorus repeats building up to a crescendo – reminiscent of “Witch Hunt”, it’s a great piece of songcraft put to work. This is definitely a track written for a single rather than song plucked from a live set or album and made to fit on a 7 inch disk.  Something of a rarity these days and a hark back to The Mob’s 80s provenance.

If “Rise Up”" is the legacy of Witch Hunt then “There’s Nothing You’ve Got I Want” is the continuation of themes from their last single (until now!), “The Mirror Breaks” – both lyrically and musically.  This melodic, melancholy tune conveys a combination of resignation and frustration at being confronted by a shitty mainstream that won’t even let you go to opt out: “Where we live amongst the values we resent”.  Joy Division inspired bass lines loom around adding to the general gloomy feel.  Annoyingly for me there is a very  minor resemblance to the melody of the Oasis tune “Half the world away” which means I cannot rid images of the Jim Royle from my mind when I hear it!  Musically it reminds me a little of some of Joe Strummer’s later Mescaleros tracks especially with the harmonica (which I initially thought was  a concertina) whiddling away in the background.  Maybe there’s something in the Somerset air….Turns out that the harmonica is played by singer/guitarist Mark’s dad making this release very much a family affair given that Mark’s daughter Tess is one of the team running All The Madmen.

With a hand screen printed cover to boot, existing fans of The Mob should not be disappointed and completists / record collectors (delete as applicable) will surely want to add this to the other 4 singles in their collection. As with all ATM 7 inches, if you want to get it 2 weeks before it hits the streets in time for Rebellion – and on coloured vinyl -  then sign up for the All The Madmen 7 inch singles club . I am also assured that there will be a bonus track or 2 with the download version.

Get it from All The Madmen’s online store
Or get all the ATM 7 inch singles as they come out on coloured vinyl from the Singles Club, as reported recently on LTW

Words by Nathan Brown.  You can read more from Nathan here

One thought on “The Mob: Rise Up! / There’s Nothing You’ve Got I Want – single review

  1. BLUE STEWART

    cant wait for the release of the mob single, just listening to the snippets of both tracks here took me straight back to the sights, sounds and smells of squats i was living in ,in the 80s,, its just brillient to be listening to old, and now new stuff by the likes of the mob and steve igs etc ,, theres mixed elements here, a taste of dirty crusty punks we use to be in squats, but also a more up to date lifes moved on feel too, rare, but the mix of the new stuff and the whole feel of the past roots stuff works brilliently,, i personally am over the fecking Moon the mob and steve igs are about to this day still recording and doing gigs, all priceless and all as enjoyable as when i 1st found them in the 80s,,, im finding myself lighting more fires (controlled ones) !! in woods listening to these bands again and loving every moment of it,, keep it up mark and the mob, hope to see you all soon.. peace….from BLUE OF RUPTURED LIFE……

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