GBH / The Defects / Suckin Diesel / War Iron - live
@ Auntie Annies, Belfast, 03/02/2012
To be honest, I hadn't planned on going to this gig but a change of circumstances and a late phone call from a mate, persuaded me to get of my arse and make the effort. At least it would give me the chance to catch up with some old muckers I hadn't seen for a while, savour a few pints and hopefully enjoy some cracking punk music.
As it happens, I spent a bit too long catching up, savouring pints and nipping outside for a few puffs that by the time I made it upstairs I'd already missed the first two bands! First on were local doom-sludge merchants War Iron who made a brief guest appearance to promote their new album which has just been released on Belfast label Punkerama Records. By all accounts the album is selling well. Next up was local hardcore band Suckin Diesel who I believe gave a good account of themselves. I've yet to see this band. Sorry lads, another time.
Due to my late entry into the upstairs venue, I was stuck at the back and didn't have a great view of the stage. The place was rammed, sweat dripping off the walls. Things got even hotter when The Defects hit the stage and powered their way through a classic set of songs we all know so well - Metal Walls, Bitch, Brutality etc and the recent single Revelator (what a fxxxing record that is!). I've seen quite a few reformed bands over the years and a lot of them are poor imitations of their previous selves. Not this lot though! The Defects were a cracking band back in the day but this latter day version is something else. I've said it before and I'm not afraid to say it again, I really don't think there is a better punk band out there today than The Defects. New recruits Roy and Aidy give the band some added oomph (is that a word? lol). No disrespect intended towards the original members but these two guys work so well with Kinky and Buck and they just have that added edge. Buck is a master of his craft and has a great rapport with the audience and Kinky's songwriting has taken on a new verve. Another, fantastic show from the East Belfast lads. New album, with all new songs, due out in the summer. Can't fxxxing wait!
I'm sorry to say that GBH are one of those bands who kinda passed me by. Since the early releases such as Sick Boy, Give Me Fire (great single) and the City Baby Attacked By Rats album I haven't really followed their career. And this is the first time I'd seen them live. GBH played hard, fast, and loud, and had the crowd jumping around from the off. It was hard to get a clear view from where I was standing, too many heads bobbing up and down, blighting my line off vision. But every so often I caught a glimpse of a band who looked to be giving their all. And the crowd showed their appreciation by joining them on stage for most of the set. Fists pumping the air as the audience sang along with their heroes - it looked like a real punk rock party going on front of stage. Not being an avid follower of the band I did struggle to recognise a lot of the songs but Give Me Fire live was worth the price of admission alone. All in all, a good performance. Think I'll maybe have to revisit their back catalogue!
A good night out, and it was great to see Auntie Annies packed. I have to say though, in my opinion, The Defects stole the show!
If anyone would like to add a few words about the War Iron and Suckin Diesel performances please do so via the contact page.