The last of three gigs tonight in a rainy Northwich sees Dermo’s latest incarnation Time For Action. If you’re expecting Northside think again. The man himself hasn’t changed but his sound has! Wayne Carey is on hand to check em out!
Last time I met Dermo was back in the mid-nineties, where he was frequently seen out and about in Greater Manchester, everywhere and anywhere with his Northside posse. But that’s another story…. He’s back with a bang with Neil and Keith Pleasant on drum and bass duties, joined by Simon Burton on guitars. This venue is supposed to be haunted and the lighting tonight does give it that creepy look. Dermo and band hit the stage and launch into debut album opener Time For Action which is a down and out shout out loud punk single. Even when the mic goes off mid-song this doesn’t phase the man himself and he uses his initiative and grabs the guitarists mic to finish off the song. He likes to make the quips and banter in between songs, but if you’re not a Manc you wouldn’t get it.
Bone Idol has that characteristic Manc snarl going on which will never change, however, the music has a raw punk energy unlike the baggy tunes of Northside. The songs are infectious in a punk-pop way and the bass player is really getting into it especially on Uniform which takes on the theme of not conforming and fighting the man. Dermo and co definitely have a lot of old punk influences going in here like The Damned, Buzzcocks, Slaughter & The Dogs and Stiff Little Fingers. Dermo keeps that indie element alive on songs such as Never Alone which has that New Order feel going on and could be a future anthem. Your Two Faces is a nice punk tune with its straightforward shouts of ‘backstabber’ for the chorus. No explanation here then. The set builds with each song as the crowd get into it and the set ends with a great Leave Me Alone. Dermo may be onto something here as he’s changed direction totally and could easily win over the punk crowds with this stuff.