NOTTINGHAM ROCK CITY
Nov 17th 2012
Prior to the Nottingham leg of the current Buzzcocks tour, Iâm in the Rock City dressing rooms as Pete Shelley (warm, funny and engaging) very patiently answers a long list of questions for my thesis, largely in relation to my ongoing argument with the theorist Hebdige and his claims that subcultures such as punk never truly mean anything as they are not a true force for revolution.
Shelleyâs with me on this one â of course punk mattered, it enabled people to be themselves, particularly as over the years it has become more entrenched and thus accepted. His enthusiastic defence bodes well; a reflection of a band still in love with what they do.
Tonight, they manage to communicate that, conveying their timeless themes to what looks to be a very mixed-age audience. Straight away they rip into the droll pseudo-situationism of âBoredom,â segueing effortlessly into âFast Carsâ to set the scene for a set that set that mainly draws from their seminal debut album âAnother Music In A Different Kitchenâ (implying a shrewd awareness of what the public want to hear).
The band are on brilliant form, loud as ever but not with volume not substituting exhilaration and pace. As individuals, they create some blisteringly tight sound with their instruments â a sober Steve Diggle significantly more restrained than at those controversy-sparking âBack to Frontâ gigs earlier this year, simply getting on with the task in hand.
The various break-ups, reformations and line-up changes the band have had over the years, doesnât show at all as there as something both competent and complicit about how well they operate as a unit; the current rhythm section, Danny Farrant and Chris Remington, seem just as much as part of the band as its original members, something hugely important in live communication.
Closing the set with crowd-pleasers âEver fallen in loveâ¦â and a gloriously bawdy âOrgasm Addictâ is another smart move and this has been a truly great night from a band still evidently carrying an awareness of how important punk not only was, but still is.
Take that, Hebdige!
So, a great night â utmost thanks to the band for both their great set and continuing to give me a brilliant night afterwards as I make use of my first ever AAA pass, but thatâs a different story! As exciting and relevant as ever, tonight Rock City has seen a band somehow perfectly summarise over 35 years. And how often can you say that?
I donât mind
Get On Our Own
Whatever Happened toâ¦?
Girl from the Chainstore
Moving Away from the Pulsebeat
Love you More
What do I get?
Harmony in my Head
Ever Fallen in Love