‘Live At The Old Barn’ Top Ten Garage/Trash/Punk bands playing the Southsea venue soon…‘Live At The Old Barn’ Top Ten Garage Trash & Punk Bands playing over the next 5 months. 

The Old Barn at the back of The Milton Arms in Southsea, Portsmouth is one of my favourite places to see bands.

Its a rough and ready, no mod cons venue (in the back room of a ‘local’ pub) with a half decent PA and relatively clean toilets and low-ish bar-prices. But what makes it great is the friendly people and great bands who play there.  ( I was never destined for that high-paid job in Advertising...) OK, I only go to the Punk Rock’n’Roll gigs there promoted by people like the avuncular admirer of the female form Chris Abbott -formerly of Basins fame, and Mark Ballard (Racketeers/the Dinz & other bands) and in the past, legends John Flash and Jon Lamb, the Barn also host rave nights etc for younger people… but don’t ask me about them FFS.  In the past there have been cracking gigs by the likes of Snakerattlers, the Parkinsons TV Smith & the Bored Teenagers with local heroes like Emptifish and the Rems providing support.

I asked Chris about the bands he chooses:

The great thing about having a once a month hobby is I can please myself to a certain extent!  It gives me the freedom to look around the London Trash/ Garage scene and find what personally I find exciting!  Excitement and an element of theatricality in a band is far more important than musical virtuosity in my opinion!  People need to be properly entertained.

Between January – May 2020 there are a series of gigs which will be absolute blinders and here are my personal pick of the bands playing, headliners and Pompey bands…. followed by the dates.  See you at the bar.

Riot Club

Brand new, young guns who look like they are gonna give the older bands a run for their money with their Slaves/Amazing Snakeheads type adrenaline-fuelled punk rock rock’n’roll snarl. The Future of Pompey Punk.

They play a headline gig at the Edge of The Wedge on 9th Feb as well as the support slots listed below and are on  Spotify

Riot Club at the Barn from Steve5by5 Photography on Vimeo.

Duncan Reid and the Big Heads

The self -proclaimed “World’s Best Looking Heavy Melody Power Pop Punk Band” fronted by the Peter Pan of Pop-Punk – the artist formerly known as Kid Reid from the Boys. LTW writer evangelist Neil Hodge rates them as one of the best live bands around and I can see why from the video evidence.  Read this!  Website

Black Bombers

Motor City Punk Rock’n’Roll Funhouse from Brum featuring former Godfathers Birch and Crittall and legendary drummer Dave Twist – this is one band i am really looking forward to seeing. The jams will be indeed, kicked out.      Website.

The Fallen Leaves

Punk Rock For Gentlemen. The Best Group In England. Simple Songs For Complex People.
. The Fallen Leaves really are everything they say they are and more.  Loved by the Portsmouth crowd of reformed hooligans with impeccable manners, sharp clothes and creepers.     Website

Eight Rounds Rapid

Featuring the son of Wilko Johnson in their line-up, they are an unusual and intense rock’n’roll proposition with a twitchy identity of their own.  Sharp and Angular Rhythm and Blues for the new decade.   Website

The Courettes

Brazillian/Danish Garage Sensations!  Coming over in May.  This is the gig which I am most excited about!  Halfway between the Shangri-La’s, The Sonics and The Milkshakes and therefore Probably the best Garage band in the World.  Website

Das Clamps

Another Garage Trash duo of the kind loved by promoter Chris Abbott and co. Sleazy and primitive. Shit Music For Shit People sums up their attitude and humour.   Bandcamp


When Ian Corbridge reviewed Tensheds album here he gave it 9/10. From what I’ve heard it’s well-deserved.  They look like a very interesting band indeed with organ making as much of a beautiful noise as a guitar!   Website


(Not a Chris Abbott gig this one!)  A change of style with Hippy Anarcho punk elders Zounds, fronted still by Steve Lake… Now I have to be honest – Zounds can be terrible and they can be great live -it’s a lottery!  Hopefully they can pull off a good one when they play the Barn – the inevitable highlight of the set being this…  (“Get on with it!!!”)   Website

Acid Attack

Reformed Portsmouth UK82 legends Acid Attack seem to be forever gigging and have become a proper force to be reckoned with live and loud.  It’s a dark, angry, intense sound and arguably far better than they were in their youthful heyday.  Video evidence …  Facebook

and a bonus number 11…

The Dinz

Newest band of punk veterans from Pompey whose album got a great review in Vive Le Rock.  Fronted by Mark Ballard they play Heads-Down No-Nonsense Pissed-Off Boogie Punk rock’n’roll.  The new single -the self explanatory  Investment Wanker goes into a funkier territory but is still the dog bollocks.  Listen and Buy from HERE And they’re on Facebook


Even if you can’t make the gigs, which I hope you can, (Budget Ibis hotel is walking distance to the venue) this is a bloody great playlist even if I say it myself… xx

Gig dates

Saturday, 25 January 2020 –  The Fallen Leaves + Eight Rounds Rapid + The Dinz     Tickets

Friday, 31 January 2020 –  Zounds, Riot Club + the Dinz   Tickets (We Love the Big Blue Shed promotion)

Saturday 29th February 2020  – Duncan Reid and The Big Heads, Black Bombers & Acid Attack    Tickets

Sunday, 8 March 2020 –  Subhumans + the Dinz    Tickets (We Love the Big Blue Shed promotion)

Saturday, 21 March 2020 – The Witchdoktors, Tensheds, Riot Club.   Tickets

Saturday 25th April 2020 – Thee Windom Earles & Das Clamps  – Tickets

Friday 29th May 2020- The Courettes, Paul Groovy & The Pop Art Experience and Thee Sopwith Camels   – Tickets 


All words and choices Ged Babey

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Ged Babey is 56. from Southampton, has written since 1985 for Sound Info, Due South, various fanzines and websites, contributed to Record Collector magazine and was sole author of 'Punk Throwback' fanzine -the name of which was taken from an insult hurled at him by the singer with a young band he managed for a while. Ged believes that all good music and art has a connection with punk rock.


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