BACK STAGE AT PEPPERMINT IGUANA HQ: Gigs, Festivals, Parties, CDs, Books, Protests, travels, photography and Cardiff City FC

Friday, March 28, 2008

CITIZEN FISH: live in a dive

With a little bit of help from Blind Destruction, Gagged (South Wales’ very own anarchist newsletter) put on yet another blinding benefit gig. Again, the Legendary TJs was again chosen as the venue.

We were pleasantly surprised to find that you did not need breathing apparatus to use the gents; obviously the venue is looking to upgrade its reputation. Then again, on exiting the bog we discovered a huge bin in the middle of the dance floor to catch the rain that was coming in from the ceiling (presumably travelling through the three floors above before getting to the nightclub), so the clever dumb balance was once again restored.

For someone who prefers to watch live music out doors, I am being very picky here… lets get on with the review…..


Kilnaboy were on early, maybe it was their desire to keep away from the water on the dance floor, in case they had to either A) drink it neat or B) wash in it (sorry lads and lass, couldn’t resist it). Their sets definitely seem to be getting punkier every time we see them, now sounding like a punk band that play folk, rather than a folk band that play punk. They have been getting up and having a bash at just about every opportunity for quite some time now, turning up everywhere like some sort of anarchist stalker (are they really MI5 in disguise?). All that practice is starting to show, no matter how drunk they get they still somehow manage to put on a show that gets everyone moving, from the old heads staffing the bookstalls to the young guns looking for some fun. Tonight is no exception and the dance floor soon becomes a Temporary Autonomous Moshpit.


Spanner don’t get quite as much practice as Kilnaboy but they still manage to improve every time we see them, which is quite a feat considering how good they were the first time we saw them. Charging over the river Severn, eager to show solidarity with comrades in arms, they bombard the gathered clans with high-octane ska punk, diluting the rain on the floor with the sweat of the bodies thrashing about. When they hit the stage they start with a rallying call… “Get involved with South Wales Anarchists, they are doing some serious work and having a good time while they are at it”. Ditto Spanner. They know exactly what has to be done, they don’t shirk from doing it, but they also know that you can have a laugh while you are at it. Spanner… serious fun!


If you wanna talk about practice, hard working Citizen Fish put everyone else to shame. Averaging about 200 gigs a year for the last 18 years, not to mention the fact that half the band also tour as The Subhumans, you have a seriously polished ska punk machine. Ramming their songs with pretty astute social observations and anarchist critique, it is almost a shame to put them to music so intense and high energy, but as singer Dick puts it mid set “look, if you wanna know what this song is about, go over there, buy the CD and read the lyrics. Mean time, lets dance!” Like a whippet running rings around a police dog, Dick charges around the stage putting kids half his age in the crowd to shame. The music, although played at break neck speed, is precise and polished. Citizen fish, in a pond of their own.



At 4:43 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

wot no Mat Contain nuts review?



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