Should you ever be in need of challenging the belief that punk is more than just speeded up rock music, I would encourage you to watch the first fifteen minutes of Julien Temple’s excellent ‘Filth and the Fury’ documentary; a piece that remains the go-to source for explaining the meaning behind the (best of) punk’s hooligan art music and the importance of, simply, getting out of the way and letting the music speak for itself.
Though the Pistols, and some of their late 70’s competition, went on to pretty much contradict all of their early statements about not selling out, it was there brave, hyperactive, attitude that will define punk indefinitely. It’s an attitude that has prevailed for almost 40 years and an attitude that clearly inspired Gateshead punk residents ‘The band for disease control and prevention’ (tbfdcap) when launching their second album, ‘Human Versus Devil’.
Putting on more of a mini punk festival than simply focusing on themselves tbfdcap brought together a bill consisting of several different punk styles showcasing that punk was never about uniformity, rather originality. One man, Weller-influenced, Peesh played a blend of well thought out, original, acoustic punk that included standout ‘Ballad of the disenfranchised’; full piece Mechanical Mouse Organ played a straighter harder sounding style and London street poet Cherry B provided clever insight through use of wordplay.
Once the support had warmed up the crowd, tbfdcap played ‘Human Versus Devil’ front to back. Playing a style of music that blends the pop sensibilities of the Buzzcocks style of punk, with the raw attitude of the Pistols, the 5 piece band were able to showcase their considerable musical playing and style. Great punk guitar sounds blended well and formed a well constructed musical platform for frontwoman Marcia Mackman to deliver her unique style of attitude and vocal delivery.
Standout tracks of the night ‘Heavy Stone’ and ‘Human Versus Devil’ worked well as a result of the band simply re-creating the controlled violence of their recordings and standing back.
It would be easy to praise the band for a great album and a great live show, they’ve done both, but even bigger praise should be presented to the whole evening and to all participants. This was a great evening for punk, and all it stands for.