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Quim Reaper by Adam Barnes

Live Review

Quim Reaper – the Alexandra Beer Emporium, Southampton.

Brash Bullets, Five Go Mad – the Shooting Star, Southampton. 

One night, two gigs, Pre-Halloween shenanigins in Southampton and two of these bands will scare the pants off ya, says Ged Babey.

There was a lot of semi-nakedness in S’fampton on Saturday night …. accompanied by punk rock electric guitar…

Walking from one venue to the other and back again (fully-clothed incidentally) wasn’t the wisest move -seeing as I had to queue to get back in and pay for the ‘club night’ at the Star whereas the gig that was just ending was Free entry.  I didn’t want to miss Quim Reapers debut gig though ….more of which later.

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5 Go Mad

Pompeys 5 Go Mad don’t need an excuse to dress up and strip off -but it was Halloween -so they had good reason for yet another outing for drummer Wozza’s mankini.  Guitar-hero Brians Victorian swimsuit had a massive hole cut out of the arse, creating a horrific bum cleavage.  Their slapstick take on UK82 punk is getting less shambolic every time they play. They are almost getting professional, which is a worry.  A self-rousing rabble in Test Tubes and Macc Lads vein but without a malicious bone in their body of work.  ( 5 Go Mad are always gigging, check out their Facebook for details )

 

Brash Bullets are a young, keen Southampton punk band who’ve been welcomed by the over 50’s as they sound so redolent of a 1977 vintage band.  Visually they look interesting as the singer (the brilliantly named Andrew Defiant) is on the short-side and the guitarist is about six foot six. Consequently you get a gangling beanpole a la Joey Ramone or Nicky Wire  and a Peter Coyne type figure vying for attention.

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Brash Bullets

The stage being on the same level as the dancefloor and a crowd made up of mainly the other bands ( Ill-Gotten Gains and Murderers Row who I missed) and a loud, cobbled together PA meant that my friend Terry O’Brien commented, (with authority, because he was there) “This really is just like the Roxy”.  Brash Bullets don’t dress the part, but a respectful, reasonable cover of A’ Bomb In Wardour Street tells you the type of band you’re dealing with. Check out their soundcloud here and Dig the new breed, indeed.

Quim Reaper – a deliberately provocative name – are an Isle of Wight band / art project / pisstake / nightmare , made up of current members of Bullybones and a former member of Spaff Tits.  The latter I saw at Southsea Fest and they were an amazing amalgam of Suicide and Prolapse… but have now split up due to pregnancy and further education.

Gimp masks, wigs and make-up and a tendency to swap instruments ( none of them are “proper” drummers so they take turns at hammering out a relentless beat.) QR were a confusing blur of fast, furious, semi-improvised mania. Vocals are hollered in to a mic set on maximum reverb and each song sounds like a downhill race to finish first.  The three Bones members have a musical telepathy but have been energised by the mad, bad Luke, a bearded maniac who is only in bands to keep him out of medical detention (I imagine).  Whether they are a full-time band or an occaisonal party-project remains to be seen, but they are essential in a violence-you-can-dance-to kind of way.

There facebook page describes them only as “2 chord trash & ya muvvas ass” which is pretty much it, in a nutshell, but doesnt get over what a force of nature this band are, already. For a debut gig, it was scarey and remarkable, and yeah people walked out, but for others, it was the most jaw-dropping performance of the year.

 

All words by Ged Babey.  Black & White pictures  by Adam Barnes.  5 Go Mad in colour by Pam Eckersall

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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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