The Mob – Meanwhile Gardens – August 1983 / The Clefts – 1981 / Ritual – 1982 / Kindergartan – 1985 / Yabby You And The Prophets – 1975 / The Apostles – 1986

A KYPP catch up on recent You Tube posts that have been published recently.

The Mob – Meanwhile Gardens – August – 1983 part 1

The Mob – Meanwhile Gardens – August – 1983 part 2

Uploaded tonight is a wonderful performance from The Mob, recorded at Meanwhile Gardens near Westbourne Park in the summer of 1983.

The audio is a second generation copy of the cassette that Protag, who was looking after the vulnerable P.A system on the day, recorded via the mixing desk.

I will endeavor to upload some more performances from The Mob in the future.

For downloads of this performance go to this KYPP post HERE

All the photographs are from the collections of Mick Lugworm and Tony D.

A photograph was taken at the pub next to the canal opposite Meanwhile Gardens. Some photographs were taken at Meanwhile Gardens. Some photographs were taken of various people walking to the Centro Iberico, a short walk from Meanwhile Gardens.Some photographs were taken outside and inside the Centro Iberico.

The rough typed interviews with The Mob are written and typed by Tony D and also from his collection.

The best I could do was to supply the Wilf drawings at the beginning and end, which are from my collection.

Oh and the cassette tape, which I guess is quite important considering!

Dedicated to Naomi Okada – This will put the book into some kind of perspective.

Red White And Blue

Premature Burial / Black Death

Some years after The Clefts had split up, I got to know Clive, the ex guitarist, and his brother Frank, the ex vocalist.

Although from Letchworth Garden City, the brothers were seen inside the nearby Stevenage venue, the Bowes Lyon House for the weekly punk nights on a regular basis.

Clive and his brother produced screen printed T – shirts from their mothers home, and sold them via the back pages of the music weeklies, at gigs, and from word of mouth.

Anyone that you saw with a Rudimentary Peni, UK Decay, Subhumans or Flux Of Pink Indians T – shirt, back in the early – mid 1980’s, would have got them from Clive and Franks micro business. The brothers were not bootlegging, always getting permission to produce designs on behalf of the bands. There were too many bands to mention on here, but I had several, including my adored Chron Gen T – shirts.

A few years down the line, it was Clive that printed all of the King Penguin Distribution catalogues, that I would send out or give away at gigs. There were three catalogues in all. Thanks for that grafting Clive! King Penguin Distribution managed to sell many of the designs that were still available back in the 1980’s, lovingly screen printed by Clive and Frank.

Clive still has a hand in T – shirt manufacturing, and has an eBay store. Some selected shirts still remain from those glory years but not too many sadly…

HERE is the eBay store details for Clive’s screen printing business.

The Clefts were ‘formed’ in the summer of 1978, although this school boy band only had two Spanish guitars, a biscuit tin, and a cymbal half inched by Frank from the school.

By 1979, after actually owning some cheap instruments, The Clefts started to get a sound influenced, not by Sex Pistols, but by the Swell Maps and the Mekons, and started performing a few gigs. I understand that a ‘few’ means exactly that, not many at all.

The band supported Patrik Fitzgerald at the Bowes Lyon House in 1980, with a new drummer that had joined the night before. A friend of Jon Thurlow ex of Optional Extras, and soon to become the guitarist of Chron Gen. I think The Clefts were first support to Crisis when that band visited Letchworth Garden City.

This record recorded in 1981 shares a sound similar to Part 1, a band from Bletchley in Buckinghamshire that were active around the same time. This is probably down to coincidence rather than either band forcing the sound. It’s more than very unlikely that either band had heard of the other band.

From what I understand there were only 750 copies of this 7″ single produced, making it outsell any other Letchworth Garden City band by around 750 copies.

Songs For A Dead King side 1

Songs For A Dead King side 2

Some members of the band Ritual had started practicing and performing sporadically, in 1979 as General Confusion. Only settling line ups and the name Ritual in 1981.

Ritual were one of the first ‘positive’ punk bands but never got the same recognition as Sex Gang Children or Southern Death Cult did in and around 1981 / 82.

Many compare Ritual to Theatre of Hate as the band also had a sax player. There could be comparisons to many other bands in parts. U.K Decay being an obvious one. Lack Of Knowledge and Part 1 being less obvious.

Prior to the ‘Mind Disease’ 7″ single, Ritual released a six track demo tape.

They also recorded tracks for a cassette album called “Songs For A Dead King” which was released with a booklet.

The booklet is featured page by page on this YouTube video.

‘Songs For A Dead King’ has some decent demo quality songs within the thirteen songs on the cassette, but I feel is slightly let down by the addition of a few ‘live’ recordings.

This is just me. I am a little O.C.D when it comes to albums released on vinyl, cassette or even 7″ E.P’s.

Either record and release a studio session, whether that means less tracks (as studios were expensive, then and now) or record a full on ‘live’ album.

I’m fine with either, but not mixed together.

Classic studio albums and classic ‘live’ albums are in abundance.

Mix the two and you begin to end up with, in my opinion (as if that would matter) a rather more ‘desperate’ release.

Anyway carrying on.

In 1983, Ritual re-recorded ‘Brides’, a track from the first demo cassette tape, and from the ‘Songs For A Dead King’ cassette tape.

The song was released as part of the ‘Kangaroo Court ‘ 12″ single. By far Ritual’s best release, and sadly their last.

The band fell apart as drummer Ray Mondo and guitar player Jamie Stewart were asked to join Death Cult.

Ray Mondo later switched the Death Cult drummer seat with Nigel Preston (ex-Theatre of Hate) to be the drummer in the last line up of the (early) Sex Gang Children. Vocalist Errol Blythe and bass player Mark Bond joined Spon (ex-UK Decay) to form In Excelsis.

Both the Ritual singles, and the cassette tape ‘Songs For A Dead King’ can be downloaded on the KYPP post HERE.

Hope you like this post, and remember that the images accompanying the audio is the original booklet scanned in full.

World Turned Upside Down

Double Standards / Carbon

Kindergarten along with Lack Of Knowledge were one of the Enfield area bands, although by the time of this record being released some members of the band were holed up at Lansdowne Road in Tottenham, N17 within cheering distance of the football stadium there.

The band were connected to Tea House Camp not only by location (a member of Tea House Camp also lived at Lansdowne Road) but also by constantly performing together at various gigs around the North London area. Kindergarten were the heavier sounding of these two bands with a sound reminiscent of Killing Joke.

Tea House Camp were actually from Bradford, home of New Model Army and Southern Death Cult and were just temporarily based in London. Both brothers in that three piece band were actively employed by doing stints at Rough Trade Distribution, then based at Collier Street in Kings Cross, N1.

Kindergarten had quite a decent following at those North London gigs and I saw them a fair few times. A lot of Play Dead and New Model Army types used to come to the performances, including the infamous Nick The Frog. Joolz, the Bradford poetess and Justin from New Model Army would come along now and again and those two would also invite the band to there private parties in Stamford Hill which were fun. The couple that I went to were, in any case…

Gig highlights for me were performances at The Three Crowns in Stoke Newington on one of Jon Fat Beasts free entry gigs and The Boston Arms in Tufnell Park which was an all day gig with Brigandage, Rubella Ballet, Ausgang and Tea House Camp performing among a host of others.

The debut 7″ single, released on Diamond Records, ‘Warrior / Ha Ha Ha!’ had been released and sold out pretty fast, as far as I recall.

While an idea of recording the second single was in the air I was paying a visit to Lansdowne Road and it was discussed that the band wanted to place mugshots of various people onto the eventual artwork.

I went out to the nearest photo booth with Magnus who was quite an infamous character. He was a relatively well connected roadie and did a fair amount of regular work at the Clarendon in Hammersmith. The list of bands that he had worked for was quite vast including New Model Army, The Cult, Play Dead as well as Tea House Camp and Kindergarten.

We came away with four mugshots from Seven Sisters tube station and wondered back to Lansdowne Road where we placed them in a pile with other booth photographs already collated.

Around half a year later the record had been recorded and pressed and artwork ready to go to the printers and I was quite chuffed to see that three of the four photo booth photos that myself and Magnus had handed in, had been used. One of me, one of Magnus with his treasured (and seemingly always worn) eagle baseball cap, and one of the both of us together. Nick The Frog is one the sleeve twice although both the same booth photograph, but one of them has a sword drawn onto it! My younger brothers girlfriend of the time named Amy was also on the inside cover…

For the downloads of both singles released by Kindergarten go onto this KYPP post HERE.

Lovely.

Vivian Jackson and The Prophets side 1

Vivian Jackson and The Prophets side 2

This debut collection of recordings that were recorded by Vivian Jackson and The Prophets, included various 7″ single tracks dating from 1972 until 1974, on Jamaican record labels that were released in amazingly small quantities of no more than two hundred copies originally.

The album I have in my collection, credited to Vivian Jackon (sic) and his ‘Yabby You’ nickname, is the very first pressing on the Prophet records label, run by Vivian Jackson himself, that got distributed among the wave of militant roots reggae music that had became so popular in the large towns and cities of Jamaica in 1977. Some copies making there way to Europe, and specifically to the UK. Artists like Culture, Burning Spear and The Congos and many more helped pave the way for this music in the UK, with a large amount of help from late night radio DJ’s David Rodigen and John Peel.

The original pressing of this album was released in 1975 on the Micron record label, quickly followed in 1976 by the only UK version of the album to be released. ‘Conquering Lion’ was renamed ‘Ram A Dam’ for the UK market, and contained most of the tracks on the Micron Records pressing, although in a different running order. ‘Yabby U and The Prophets’ was the revised artist name and the album was released on the Lucky record label.

If you own a copy on either of the Micron or Lucky record labels then you have a real treasure. Look after it. They are worth hundreds and hundreds of dollars.

My heavy weight first pressing, with it’s heavyweight cardboard sleeve released on the Prophet record label, is rare enough, but willing to trade for a Micron issue!

Vivian Jackson was born in extreme poverty in Kingston and got seriously ill in his teens while working at a furnace facility. Thrown out of his employment, he had no choice but to became a beggar and hustler around the markets, in the tough ghetto’s of Kingston. Vivian being disabled and in such a ragged state, no one would employ him, added to this situation, he also had his share of knocks living on the street.

He eventually started to compose songs and, as normal with Jamaican artists, visited many recording studios and sung acapella style to the studio owners. Osbourne Ruddock AKA King Tubby told the artist to come back to the studio with the (ever so) important JA dollars, and they would cut a vocal and a dub.

Vivian had no money and had to wait quite some time to go back to the studio, this time with The Prophets (actually originally credited as Ralph Brothers on the final released record in 1972) to get ‘Conquering Lion’ down on dub-plate with a King Tubby’s dub on the reverse side.

This dub-plate, as usual in Jamaica, was played on the sound system that was affiliated with the studio the tracks were recorded in; King Tubby’s sound system in this case, and from the reaction from the crowd at the dances, a few hundred copies were pressed up on the NOW label. These copies sold out and gave Vivian his first steps in the industry, to build up a working relationship with Tubby that would last several years.

The ‘Conquering Lion’ album is filled with tracks that are sublimely beautiful, and without doubt some of the best roots music ever produced by any artist. Quite frankly, a cornerstone of the reggae genre. It is also one of my very favorite records, of any genre.

The original KYPP post HERE.

The Apostles Live At The Aktion Klub side 1

The Apostles Live At The Aktion Klub side 2

I knew Andy Martin and Dave Fanning of The Apostles reasonably well, when they both moved to 108 Brougham Road Hackney.

I was visiting Brougham Road several times a week, as I had nothing better to do with my time locally, so I was volunteering my time to All The Madmen records, a record label based at 96 Brougham Road.

I stayed over both houses on occasions, and even painted the inside of 108 Brougham Road once, much to the appreciation of Andy Martin and Dave!

Andy Martin was very kind to me in general, and in the case of painting his hallways, landings and other parts of the house, he gave me three cassettes.

One of which is uploaded onto this YouTube post today.

[I was happy for the cassettes – I was not expected to be paid as I wanted to be useful]

There were times when the Hackney Hell Crew were staying there and others would visit.

The Hackney Hell Crew members that I remember being in the house on a regular basis were Pus (Goatsbreath), Ollie, Simo and Martin Barabbas… Two of those Hackney Hell Crew members are no longer with us, and haven’t been for some decades now…

Ollie and Martin Barabbas were both in The Apostles in 1984 recording the 4th E.P ‘The Giving Of Love Costs Nothing’ (ironic title given the subject matter on this E.P) and the 5th E.P ‘Smash the Spectacle’ recorded in 1985.

Now and again, Andy and Dave would jam in the practice room at 108 Brougham Road aided and abetted by whoever was around the house at the time. I banged a drum on the odd occasion.

The ‘Aktion Klub’ was based at 108 Brougham Road, it wasn’t a club, there were no flyers to advertise, and there was not really an audience, save whoever was around the house at the time, there were no regular events.

The Apostles on this session respectably sound like their influences, Whitehouse / Come Organisation, Throbbing Gristle, ‘Vibing Up The Senile Man’ era Alternative T.V and Psychic T.V.

This recording can be hard to listen to, unless of course, you have an ear for this kind of thing.

The visuals that accompany the audio on this YouTube post are two scans of my original cassette tape given to me (as a set) from Andy Martin for painting large areas of the house, and with a nice touch, there is a picture he drew of me, the way I looked in 1985 and 1986.
I am not sure what the hands covering my ears reference is. Perhaps he thought I would hate the material on the cassette tape!

Also scanned are two photographs from my collection of the back garden and Dave Fanning’s bedroom at 108 Brougham Road.
These photographs were taken by my younger brother for an art project he was involved in. I have the original photographs though.

There is an old KYPP post with this cassette uploading onto it if anyone wants or feels the need to download the audio HERE.

This is The Apostles ‘Industrial’ side.

The Apostles ‘Punk’ side will be uploaded onto YouTube at some point in the future.

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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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