Necro – 1983 / Bob Marley & Augustus Pablo – Daddy Kool Records -1979 / Webcore – A Real Kavoom – 1986 / Brigandage – Hammersmith Clarendon – 1984 / Savage Republic – I.P.R – 1982 / Tribesman – Label Records – 1978

Necro 1983

I’m really chuffed that Tim, the old drummer of Necro, found an old C90 cassette tape and a clutch of photographs in a box in his house sometime ago… To me, this stuff is gold dust! A crystal clear recording of the band playing the ‘slower’ three piece line up set without interruption, on the cheapest instruments and amps possible!

Necro were a local band to me that were formed at the dawn of 1982, a band that my younger brother joined towards the end of 1982 (or the dawn of 1983). Rob was firstly Necro’s bassist in the four piece line up, and then, a few months later, ended up as the guitarist in the three piece line up.

The ‘slower’ detail mentioned above is (I think) in part, to Steve the vocalist of Necro taking over bass guitar duties as well as singing.

The four piece Necro line ups recordings that I have here (but not uploaded anywhere yet) have songs that are faster paced possibly due to Steve not having to concentrate on hitting the right notes and getting his lyrics right at the same time. Steve could throw himself around a bit with far some freedom when three of the four piece line ups were making a racket behind him, and therefore the songs seemed (and were) faster! This is a rough and ready practice session that was taped around Tim’s parents home in Hertford, and is absolutely WONDERFUL.

Myself and my brother travelled from Hoddesdon, a town on the East Herts / Essex border so we ‘commuted’ to Hertford on these occasions!

For a much more in-depth history please consult this wonderful KYPP post HERE

It is well worth a read…

Tim also found a few photographs which I have scanned and placed onto this post.

Two graffiti photographs, one of the photographs, showing Flux Of Pink Indians inspired graffiti, that was sprayed onto a council building in 1983, and remained there for decades, finally succumbing to dust when the whole place was demolished a few years ago!

There is a photograph of the short lived ‘Rob era’ four piece, and three photographs of the better (in my opinion) three piece line up… I am captured on one of these photographs standing behind the amps at a gig somewhere, in-between my brother playing guitar and the bassist / vocalist. Some other herberts are also sitting around the back of the amps with a splendid rainbow effect livening up the place, whatever place that was!

There is also a photograph of Steve, the bassist / vocalist with some more graffiti that reads ‘LPYS (Labour Party Young Socialists) are biggest working class rip off’.

So now you know!

Following that, there is a photograph of myself with the white jeans and my younger brother on a cannon taken in 1982 by the sea somewhere or other…

The fanzine ‘War Is Over’ which is featured on the slide show was the first issue.

Tim put it together and we tried hard to punt them out to the disinterested public, although members of other local bands and various youth C.N.D members were a little more interested.

Tim put together another issue of the fanzine which has now been lost in time, although if a copy turns up I will do something with it. This second and last issue contained news and interviews on Conflict / Crass / Flux and a local band from Harlow, The Newtown Neurotics.

The ‘letter of the week’ which also features on the slideshow is from Sounds weekly music newspaper, written and sent in by Tim in the summer of 1983 and was concerning a Conflict gig in Hoddesdon that was set up by Tim and others, but failed to go ahead due to the National Front sticking their noses in, and that is complimented by Tim’s original hand written poster of that Conflict gig.

I’m still so chuffed about this little bit of local punk history from a bunch of teeny schoolboys that has suddenly landed into my possession!

Great stuff.

Bob Marley / Pablo side 1

Bob Marley / Pablo side 2

The first 12” single released on Daddy Kool Records in 1979. I do not know the story of how Keith Stone managed to arrange for one of the trilogy of reggae superstars (Marley, Dennis Brown, Gregory Isaacs) to end up on his record label, and I would be very interested if anyone that does know, will let me know!

Bob Marley, Augustus Pablo and the Upsetters was (and still would be) a scalp worthy of hanging up as a warning of intent.

The Bob Marley track was a track that failed to make the ‘Soul Rebel’ album (from the Lee Perry sessions) released on Upsetter Records / Trojan Records in 1970. The Augustus Pablo track was an alternative cut of ‘Java’, Pablo’s ‘signature tune’, this version originally released on Upsetter Records in 1972.

I went to Daddy Kool several times (as you would expect) but I kept any chatter with Keith to an absolute minimum, keeping my head down flicking through boxes until the time came to toss my selection onto the counter, cash ready to cover.

I had two bad experiences with Keith’s public relations grace (one of which was my younger brother’s experience really).

1979 or 1980, my younger brother sends cancelled cash to Daddy Kool Mail Order to cover the cost of buying the Island Records ‘cash in’ ska compilation album, ‘Intensified’, actually a brilliant compilation album.

Days and weeks went by with no package arriving. Eventually my brother phoned up Daddy Kool and got a very angry record shop owner screaming him down in a one sided verbal spar, after my younger brother had told him that the record had not arrived…

“You calling me a fucking thief – fuck off cunt” etc etc.

My younger brother was twelve or thirteen, and light of one ska compilation album.

This incident was always swimming around in my head when visiting the Daddy Kool record shop. Many years passed and I thought, as no one else was in the shop, that I would humorously bring up this incident.

Let’s just say I didn’t bring the incident up again.

Back to keeping my head down flicking through boxes until the time came to toss my selection onto the counter, cash ready to cover.

Below are a couple of comments that were on a blog, and I found quite interesting and worthy of sharing.

Comment names as given on the britishrecordshoparchive Daddy Kool page.

Photo of Keith Stone and the Daddy Kool record shop in 1978 courtesy of ADz.

I went to Daddy Kool based at Hanway Street in 1978. Keith was at the counter and there was a moody looking Rasta at the side in front, and I walked in. I was a Hi-Fi salesman from Leicester, dressed in a suit with a smart haircut, and while many would have been intimidated, I was in heaven and just listened and observed.

The speakers were concrete columns and incredible, both the Rasta and Keith were amused when I asked for records that the way I looked would not portray my taste. I bought the ‘Mexicano v Dreadlocks at O.K Coral’ 12″ single, ‘Loving Pauper’ 12″ single by Ruddy T and Trinity, and about six 45’s pres. While I waited he played ‘African Dub Chapter 3’ album that had just been delivered to the shop. I bought that to.

The shop was tiny, the place was full of vinyl, and those bins were amazing, the volume was undistorted and earth shatteringly loud.

Keith was pleasant that day and was happy to assist this dorky bloke in the crap suit with his reggae records.

Adrian David.

Daddy Kool Records was originally at street level and the space filled with racks jammed with new and second-hand reggae albums and 12” singles. Expensive, collectable albums yellowed on the walls and the counter boxes contained hundreds of Jamaican 7” singles where affordable treasures could be found.

There were cardboard boxes everywhere brimming with records. The shop had patches of damp cardboard on the floor and strip lighting above but could be really bustling, like the fruit and veg market outside and general pavement traffic.

I first visited in the early 1990’s when I was beginning to get into Jamaican music after moving to Hackney. I found the place fascinating and quite intimidating. It wasn’t just the volume of bass coming at you from the shop system, but the sleazy, ‘you can get what you want here’ vibe that was all over Soho back then, even though the merchandise on offer was vinyl instead of porn.

His reputation for grumpiness was just, and he could be hilariously rude to customers, but that never bothered me. I once asked him to play a stack of records without realising he’d just jammed his finger in a door hinge… on realising I braced myself for the worst, but with bloody nail hanging off he obliged. Wincing and using one hand!

The operation moved to the much cosier basement around the late 1990’s. You’d descend the steep stairs and get a waft of Keith’s lunch! Spanish omelette and chips seemed to be a favourite.

The basement retained much of the upstairs atmosphere but closed around 2003.

I think Keith sold his personal collection to Mick Hucknall.

Robert S

Webcore side 1

Webcore side 2

Uploaded tonight is the second Webcore cassette tape, released on A Real Kavoom from Cornwall in 1986.

I liked this band very much and saw them perform many times in and around the capital in many squatted venues including the 121 Railton Road bookshop in Brixton, the old Jungle Records building in Essex Road Islington, the Mankind Club in Hackney Central and others.

There were also plenty of great nights at the Club Dog venues in Wood Green and Finsbury Park that should also be mentioned.

Webcore also supported Psychic TV on a couple of occasions…

Below is a snippet of an interview with the Webcore keyboardist Paul Chousmer ripped for the aural-innovations.com site.

DS: How would you describe Webcore?

PC: Webcore were often described as way ahead of their time (at the time, if you can see what I mean.) I sort of took the roll of manager as nobody else would and we played everywhere. I (and Ed ‘Ozric’ Wynne) took the same view that the best way to publicize ourselves was to play wherever we could. So we often found ourselves at the same dodgy benefit gigs. All sorts of squats, free festivals, you name it. So we got a reputation for playing together all of the time. I’ve always thought our music was completely different. I felt there was a common psychedelic thread and we were always up for a party. Then Club Dog started (by Mike Dog, who later had the Ultimate Record label with groups like Eat Static and Senser) Webcore, the Ozric Tentacles and Another Green World all became regulars. And we grew with it.

DS: I agree that Webcore’s music was ahead of its time at the time. What would you say were the musical influences of the group?

PC: Our influences at the time inevitably included ENO, but also Psychic TV, Siouxsie and the Banshees, it’s difficult to say now from this distance in time. I would say we brought lots of different things together. Mick was a poet not a singer, so that was his approach. Trying to make his words fit. My idea was to create atmospheres behind the songs. Setting the scene. We were all experimenting. Just trying out ideas and if they felt good. It’s funny now that I’m teaching I see loads of young bands coming together. They all seem to want to sound like somebody else. The A&R mentality of copying whatever the last big hit was! We didn’t think that way at all back then!

DS: Webcore’s music also seems quite different from much of the other free fest bands like the Ozrics and Psi. How do you feel that Webcore fit into this scene?

PC: You’d have to ask this one of the audience really. I find it very hard to be objective. I would say that I was always surprised that Webcore’s audience danced a lot. I didn’t think of our music as dance music. This was fairly unusual in the free fest scene. Our music was also quite structured. Not totally, there was some room for improvisation. But there were definite maps to follow. The other bands seemed to be more into long wibble solos etc…

DS: What are your feelings on the festival scene of the eighties?

PC: You have to remember there was a right wing government ruling here at the time, with that bitch Thatcher at the helm. Lots of unemployment, kids on the dole, etc… Punk had run its course. We were all getting politicized. Stonehenge free festival was banned and suppressed by the police with a heavy hand. So free festivals were often a way to protest. We were all squatting, traveling. I have fond memories of that time. People were thinking of the world around them. I look at the kids now. They have no idea about politics. Nothing to protest about I suppose. The legacy of the Thatcher years is that everyone is out for themselves. Make as much money for yourself as you can and screw everyone else. I think that Reagan and his cronies did the same sort of thing over there.

DS: Through your music as Another Green World, you as an individual have moved quite easily from the scene in the eighties right into the club scene of the nineties and on. How do you feel about the club sound and what are you writing these days?

PC: I really like the music I hear in clubs these days. But it only sounds good in the clubs! In that atmosphere and loud. Most of it doesn’t seem to work when I put it on at home. However loud! In that sense I don’t really understand how I fit in. I actively try to make music that transports you from your armchair at home to some other place, without necessarily being really loud. This is important to me. So I keep in contact with these clubs, send them what I am doing. I just do what I do and they book me if they like it. This is probably quite old-fashioned these days. Everything is high sell, throwaway.

Brigandage Hammersmith Clarendon

Brigandage Hammersmith Clarendon

Indebted to David Manlove for the loan of this audience quality recording cassette tape of Brigandage performing at the Hammersmith Clarendon in 1984.

A handful of bands seem to have been connected with Kill Your Pet Puppy fanzine by forces so strong that one finds it hard to imagine one without the other.

Adam And The Antz, The Mob, Blood And Roses, Sex Gang Children, Southern Death Cult and Brigandage are examples that I can think of.

Obviously these bands would have existed without the fanzine, but a bond, I feel, did exist.

The U.K Subs, Crass or The Ruts, fine bands as they were, could not, I feel, get such a strong bond, or indeed any, with the Kill Your Pet Puppy fanzine.

I suppose it probably helped that some of these bands with that Kill Your Pet Puppy special bond had a history of sharing squatted houses, sharing drugs and gig experiences in similar venues, hairspray, magick and (maybe) even boy/girl friends within the Puppy Collective of the day.

Brigandage were one of the fine bands that I first heard on the John Peel show. The John Peel session that the band recorded in 1983 was so good that nothing (I thought at the time) could ever compare with the sonic pleasure of the three songs that were recorded specifically for John Peel.

I saw the band live and they were great, but then they split up!

The band were quickly resurrected in 1984 with the help of Richard North (who wrote and edited the excellent Kick fanzine and also did reviews, essays and interviews for the N.M.E) and two other members, joining Michelle from the original line up.

This new line up is the band that performed at the Hammersmith Clarendon captured on this cassette tape.

Step back to 1983; Richard North was already a friend of Michelle Brigandage and of the Puppy Collective, and it turned out to be a decent year to have a journo friend onside, as an article was written up on this newly named ‘Positive Punk’ movement which commanded a front page and center spread in the N.M.E.

Featured in this article were Blood And Roses and Brigandage, and for good measure several other bands were name checked throughout the article, Southern Death Cult, The Mob and so on.

Shortly after the N.M.E article, The Face magazine got involved in the rush to feature the movement, slipped effortlessly into the glossy pages of the magazine.

Even notorious speed freak Michael Moorcock, set up his TV cameras and got busy, filming both Blood And Roses and Brigandage at the Tribe Club in Leicester Square, and continuing to film footage at Puppy Mansions in Hampstead.

There were notably, interviews (and much grinding of teeth) with members of Brigandage and Blood And Roses surviving the final cut…

What happened?

Nothing…

The band’s at the forefront of this little scene had all split up by the end of 1983, as did of course, and as previously mentioned, Brigandage themselves.

There were not a lot of bands to replace the disbanded groups like The Mob, Southern Death Cult and Blood And Roses, that were of the same quality to carry this small scene on effectively, so the ‘Positive Punk’ movement pretty much died a sudden death there and then.

The ‘Positive Punk’ movement left in it’s wake some great live experiences, some great records and tapes, and some obscure literature in a few magazines, including of course, Kill Your Pet Puppy fanzine.

Brigandage were really great.

This 1984 performance of Brigandage rocks on with just enough 1976 punk spirit to overtake the opposition by several yards…

The visuals in this YouTube post include the pages of the booklet that accompanied the F.Y.M cassette tape which was released in 1984.

Savage Republic side 1

Savage Republic side 2 

The Africa Corps (Savage Republic) debut album, a stunning release was released in 1982.

This is a beautiful album to gaze at. 1000 individually numbered limited edition copies, all individually screen-printed on a very ‘heavy’ card sleeve. My copy is number 942 and the centre labels, as well as the front and rear of the sleeve have Arabic writing on them – I think other copies are all slightly different.

This release also has rich musical textures within the grooves as well as the packaging and simply must be listened to.

Text below courtesy of furious.com

The album ‘Tragic Figures’ was originally recorded under the band name Africa Corps. After it was recorded and the sleeve had been printed, Drucker announced that he was unhappy with the connotations of the band name.

Bruce; “When Phil laid down the ultimatum that we had to change our name or he would leave the band just as our first album was about to be released we spent a couple days brainstorming on what might be an appropriate new name for the band. We’d recently done some explosive shows in L.A – one at Al’s Bar that a friend had said was like a war zone on stage, so ‘Savage’ seemed to fit. And the idea of a ‘Republic’ also seemed to fit, as we did everything ourselves booked the shows, flyered, wrote all the music, made all the band decisions, did our own recordings, album covers, etc. Just like most every other band that wasn’t on a major or trying to be. But somehow, as conceptual art students we liked the idea of stating the obvious in a conceptual way, and I think somehow both Phil and I were drawn to the idea that we were establishing our group as something a bit more substantial, and we liked the idea of calling ourselves a ‘republic’. I remember thinking of the name ‘Savage Republic’, during the brainstorming and almost saying something, then discarding the idea because it seemed too obvious. Just like an art student to think he has to be more mysterious or obtuse or something. Then Phil said; “What about Savage Republic?” It seems the name was hovering around in the ether that day, and we both sort of plucked it out, though Phil was the first to verbalise it. And it quickly became obvious that that was the right name for us.”

The name had been a problem before, with people approaching the band admiring Africa Corps’ apparent Nazi connection, Drucker was Jewish so its appreciable that he wouldn’t like such thought. There was also a band called Africa Korps on the East coast, which in itself may have created problems. Licher was left having to print ‘Savage Republic’ over every place that the original sleeve said ‘Africa Corps.’ The legacy of the original band name remains in the usage of an altered Africa Corps logo for the band merchandise. Bruce substituted an Islamic Crescent and Star for the original Nazi Swastika thus hopefully removing the original connotations.

This album is the most punk sounding the band got. Beneath the murk in the mix the band sounds like a cerebral hardcore band with a funky rhythm section playing eastern tinged surf music covers of serial music. I tend to group it alongside such mavericks as the first Meat Puppets releases and D.A.F.’s Die Kleinen und Die Bosen, both of which came out in the same year. It definitely shares the same qualities of pushing against the barriers of what could be seen as punk music while retaining the same raw edge that less musically ambitious bands had. This may be down to the band not yet being entirely used to their instruments, a quality that Bruce has said elsewhere led to reinterpretation. Here things were made slightly awry because Mark was dabbling with psychedelics all the way through his time in the band and it had a negative effect on him in the long run. This caused some hairy events just before the recording of ‘Ivory Coast’, otherwise one of ‘Tragic Figures’ most memorable tracks, leading to drum tracks not being quite as strong as they could be.

The original sleeve features the firing squad execution of an Arab dissident, according to Ethan Port; “It’s an Iranian college professor, who’s hand is bandaged from being broken. He was the history professor of a U.C.L.A student who lived in the U.C.L.A Cooperative Student Housing with me in the 1980’s.’ I was afraid that such images would mean that the reissue campaign of late last year would be delayed if not halted by happenings in Afghanistan; luckily this wasn’t to be the case, not for very long anyway.

The French Sordide Sentimentale release used a different, abstract image, presumably because of the political ambiguity of the original images.

Tribesman side 1

Tribesman side 2 

Try as you might you will not find any articles on any websites regarding Tribesman. Nothing apart from a couple of YouTube posts, eBay and Discogs, and other commercial outlets to purchase some re-released copies of the handful of 7″ and 12″ singles and one album.

Nothing else. Ziltch.

I have not found any mention of Tribesman in any of the reggae books that I own, and I own a few!

Before I got pissed off, I glanced through the obvious books.

Steve Barrow’s ‘Rough Guide To Reggae’, David Katz ‘ Solid Foundation’ Tighten Up – The History Of Reggae In The U.K (ahem, except one band), the Virgin Encyclopedia Of Reggae (yuck – a Christmas present several years back).

Further, I looked in Steven Davis’ ‘Reggae International’ and finally Dave Thompson’s ‘Reggae And Caribbean Music’ and Lloyd Bradley’s ‘Bass Culture’.

Nothing. Ziltch.

Absolute madness considering…

What I do know is that Tribesman seemed to have been close to Dave Goodman, ex live soundman, and the studio producer for Sex Pistols in 1976.

Dave Goodman produced the Tribesman records that were released in 1978 and 1979 via ‘Boa’ Records, affiliated to his ‘Label’ record label, the latter better known as the recording home of punk band, Eater, and novelty records like the ‘Cash Pussies’ 7″ single.

Tribesman released three records for Boa Records;

The ‘Rocking Time’ 7″ single.

The ‘Finsbury Park’ 7″ and 12″ single.

The ‘Street Level’ album.

Tribesman released this promotional mini album that I have uploaded this evening via Dave Goodman’s ‘Label’ record label.

No sleeve artwork, just a TRIBESMAN stamp across a generic white sleeve, although there are printed labels on both sides of the record.

Unofficially called ‘Wonder Wolf’ due to the first track on the album.

I haven’t a scooby how many copies would have been pressed up. Although I would correctly guess at ‘not that many’ compared to records pressed up for public sale.

There are four studio demo tracks, and two live tracks (according to the labels on each side of the record) on this promotional mini album, although one of the live tracks sounds like a studio quality recording! The live track that actually sounds like a live track is pretty disposable in my opinion, a feel good jam based on Bob Marley’s ‘Waiting In Vain’.

The studio tracks are decent enough, and include ‘Rocking Time’ the debut 7″ single, a 7″ single that I assume was released after this promotional mini album.

I have seen a mention of Tribesman being part of the whole R.A.R scene in 1978, which is righteous enough.

Overall Tribesman’s sound, in my opinion, is similar to the earlier formed U.K reggae bands from the late 1960’s and dawn of the 1970’s like Matumbi and Cimarons, and how those two bands sounded in the latter part of the 1970’s.

So leaning towards a more commercial path compared to their mid to late 1970’s contemporaries, the tougher sound of Aswad or Misty In Roots and others.

After listening to Misty In Roots, Tribesman might not be everyone’s cup of sonic roots rock militancy…

A decent band, and a decent record nevertheless.

If anyone can enlighten me on a more concise history of the band then please leave a message and I will add ANY information to this YouTube post.

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Penguin

1985 - 1988 All The Madmen Records and Distribution 1988 - 1991 King Penguin Distribution 1989 - ???? Southern Studios / Southern Record Distribution

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