Brigandage – F.Y.M. – Fuck Off cassette – 1984

Hope / Seconds / Ripped And Torn / Iceburg / Art Of Stealing / Tears Of Glass / Fragile

Motherfucker / London Bridge / Being With You / Search And Destroy / Let It Rot / Wasteland / Ripped And Torn

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. Quite obviously these bands would have existed without the fanzine, but a bond, I feel, did exist. The UK Subs, Crass or The Ruts, fine bands as they were, could not, I feel, get such a strong bond with the fanzine.

I suppose it probably helped that most of the ‘KYPP type’ bands above also had a history of sharing squatted houses, drugs, gig experiences in similar venues, hairspray, magick and (maybe) even boy/girl friends with the Puppy Collective of the day.

Brigandage were one of the fine bands that I first heard on the John Peel show. The session the band recorded was seriously taking the piss. It was so good that nothing I thought at the time could ever touch it. It must be said at this stage that this session was recorded by the original line up that originated in 1982 and was featured in an early 1983 volume of  ‘Punk Lives’ magazine. That interview is up in the photo gallery if you care to see it under ‘Punk Lives’ sub album along with a heap of other relevant stuff from that magazine…

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, the band that recorded the tracks on this tape.

Step back to 1983; Richard North was already a fan and friend of the band and it turned out a good time to have a journo friend on the ‘inside’ as a scoop was written up on the newly named ‘Positive Punk’ movement which commanded a front page and center spread in the N.M.E. during that year. Also featured heavily in this article were Blood And Roses, and several other bands were name checked during the piece, Southern Death Cult, The Mob and so on. Shortly after The Face magazine got involved in the rush to feature the movement in nice glossy pages, and even Michael Moorcock set up his TV cameras and got busy…

What happened?

Nothing…most the band’s at the forefront of this little scene split up by the end of 1983 including of course, 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, but 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.

Nowadays of course this stuff is gold dust with interest from all over the world, not just for a bunch of punkers in London, Bradford and Leeds during the period from the middle of 1982 to late 1983.

Brigandage were really great, this tape is a mixture of live and demo material recorded and released in 1984 that rocks on with just enough 1976 punk spirit to overtake the opposition by several yards.

My Brigandage John Peel session cassette (with loads of other stuff on it as well because it was a C90) was either nicked or lost, probably nicked though, cos I do not lose a lot of tapes or records, as some of the posts on this site would testify!

If anyone can sort me out on this session I would be chuffed.

Rot ‘n’ Roll punkers…

  1. Nuzz
    August 11, 2008 at 6:32 am

    Penguin, there’s a link to the Peel Session on my blog it’s over to the left and scroll down to the what ‘ave we got here then section.

  2. Penguin
    Penguin • Post Author •
    August 11, 2008 at 6:27 pm

    That’s the badger Nuzz…cheers, nice for those tunes to be back home again, where they belong!

  3. The Fat One
    The Fat One
    August 11, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    “Nowadays of course this stuff is gold dust with interest from all over the world, not just for a bunch of punkers in London, Bradford and Leeds during the period from the middle of 1982 to late 1983.”

    You might have underestimated the amount of interest that particular edition of the NME generated. I was still in Plymouth at the time and it really was an eye and ear opener. Because Plymouth had a large poly as well as an art college some of the students would recommend bands they or their friends had come across. These loose networks were invaluable for keeping those of us living in more isolated communities informed. So when someone casually mentioned Blood and Roses and Brigandage, bands we might have heard of but had yet to hear, were not only in the NME but on the cover it came as a sort of vindication that it was ok to look and behave differently and that it wasn’t wrong to express yourself like that. It genuinely informed this youth and I can see a direct line in reading that article in a mates bedroom through to moving into my first squat in Camberwell. Back then, finding copies of KYPP and Vague were often as exciting as discovering gold dust and for those that bothered and cared enough to put these fanzines together I and a few others am truly grateful. Ta!
    One small aside……. mention should be made of the toilet in the house in West Ham where a couple of the chaps from (I think) Antisect lived, the walls were plastered with Sid The Sexist strips cut out from Viz and pages of KYPP. It was the best toilet in London at the time.

  4. Carl
    August 12, 2008 at 3:58 pm

    Great band, and I have to confess that I never read the NME article at the time, just picked up on it afterwards. I guess I found the “strand” of bands in my own time and space.

    I did have a bootleg of the original lineup playing at Woolwich ! something or other which would have been good to whack up on here but that has vanished somewhere , possibly with Penguin’s C90 !!

  5. Richard Cabut
    Richard Cabut
    August 13, 2008 at 9:09 am

    Dear The Fat One. Thanks for your comment RE the Positive Punk article. I’m the person who wrote it (Richard North was a pen name – after the New North Road squat, actually). The offending piece generated aggro aplenty at the time, so it’s nice to know someone out there cared. Sniff.

    For anyone who hasn’t seen it, there’s a link on my Myspace: As well as a URL to download the Brigandage LP Pretty Funny Thing (on which I played bass).

    Incidentally, I have a copy of the Michael Moorcock-hosted South of Watford Positive Punk programme. This features live performances from both Blood and Roses and Brigandage – as well as interior/exterior shots of Westbere Road (Puppy Mansions). If I can be arsed/figure out how to do it, I’ll stick it up on Youtube.

    Tony, thanks for the heads up. All the best to you squatters and rotters. Richard.

  6. Penguin
    Penguin • Post Author •
    August 13, 2008 at 6:34 pm

    Best toilets Fats,
    1: Dial House one is pretty impressive…see photo gallery for some pics.
    2: 50 Beck Road, Hackers, E8 once abode to Genesis and Paula P-Orridge and sprog. The door had hundreds of tiny cut out pics from porn rags of naked breasts and bottoms of ladies. The door pics were stuck on and varnished so well that to the casual observer going to the lav, it just looked like the grain of the wood. I used that room plenty of times then one day I suddenly realised what the design was. Clever guy is Gen. Hiding porn in something as everyday as a toilet door!
    3: Dunno…

  7. Chas
    August 14, 2008 at 12:32 pm

    I remember an awestruck young anarcho [of the sort once mass-produced in yeovil, I think] claiming on his return from a visit to Chumbawumba’s house that ‘they’re such anarchists, even the toilet is painted black’. Not really a ‘best toilet’ claim, but certainly a toilet claim.

  8. Penguin
    Penguin • Post Author •
    August 14, 2008 at 12:48 pm

    That shall be my number 3 Chas, thank you.

  9. Carl
    August 14, 2008 at 1:45 pm

    Have I missed something, how did we make the leap from positive punk to toilets !!

  10. Penguin
    Penguin • Post Author •
    August 14, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    Most of the bands played in a few.

  11. Nic
    August 15, 2008 at 9:24 am

    As P Orridge said (onstage with TG): “England is a toilet”…

  12. Phil R
    Phil R
    August 15, 2008 at 10:29 am

    One connection between positive punk and toilets was a house where Bob and Lisa from Blood and Roses lived (Yolkley Rd). It had no flushing toilet and Bob was the only one brave enough to shovel the waste into bin liners.
    As the story goes, Hackney council ended up removing over 90 bin bags from the garden!

  13. Jah Pork Pie
    Jah Pork Pie
    August 15, 2008 at 11:14 am

    Somebody once said of the old Marquee in Wardour Street (where I saw 999 perform the best gig I ever went to):

    “The only difference between the stage area and the toilets in the Marquee is that the toilets smell better”.

  14. Chas
    August 15, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    for a while (around 1990) the owners of the george robey in finsbury park kept an alsation locked up in the gig area during the day. They covered the dancefloor in sawdust which it used as a toilet. I discovered this the hard way while setting up before a gig. As Penguin points out, most bands played a few toilets but playing a dog toilet was a low point in a ‘career’ with a few to choose from!

  15. alistairliv
    August 15, 2008 at 1:34 pm

    AAAARGH no. no, not the Yoakley Road Pyramid of Poo! For 27 years like some character out of an H.P.Lovecraft story I have been able to keep the unspeakable image at bay, the nightmare safely locked away behind the wall of sleep. It had to be the worst toilet ever. The horror, the horror.

  16. Phil R
    Phil R
    August 15, 2008 at 4:33 pm

    I remember, after a long hitch back from stonehenge me and Matt walked into our bedrooms at Yoakley Rd and found that Richards (Blood n Roses drummer) dogs had shat all over our beds clothes etc. We took one look at it and moved out. Yoakley Rd was so dirty you had to wipe your feet to leave the house!

  17. crow
    August 15, 2008 at 10:32 pm

    yeah, bob was brave enough to scrape out the toilet into black bags then found their was maggots living in it and then as i recall vomited his guts out into the toilet… later me and martin in the middle of the night threw some of those bags over the neighbours wall the sound of the bags hitting the ground splitting was incredible …we ran and laughed our heads off

  18. Richard Cabut
    Richard Cabut
    October 28, 2008 at 2:35 pm

    Here’s the 1983 South of Watford Positive Punk prog.

    Three parts

    Live clips of Blood and Roses and Brigandage.

    Plenty of familiar faces.

    Hairdryer scene and some interviews were filmed in Tony’s spacious bedroom in Westbere Road (Puppy Mansions).

  19. Phil R
    Phil R
    October 28, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    @ The Fat One.> yeah it was the Anti- Sect house. Pete, Laurance, Freeno, Kate and Sharon lived there.

  20. Sam
    October 28, 2008 at 9:09 pm

    I went round Yoakley Rd once. My only memory of it is the toilet. It seems to have stuck in the collective unconscious of all who witnessed it.

  21. Ian S
    Ian S
    October 29, 2008 at 1:20 am

    Ha I remember seeing the Yoakley Road crapper too . . . it made the Trainspotting ‘worst toilet in Scotland’ look like Liberace’s bathroom.

  22. baron von zubb
    baron von zubb
    October 31, 2008 at 6:55 pm

    Worst toilets?
    Well, theres so many.
    Some with a foot high tepid water around them, complete with floaters.
    Im boasting now but if you want I’ll tell you about the loo with the lines of turds leading out of the room, hundreds of them.
    Seen that twice. Took a while to find the reason. But like everything, its explainable.

  23. Sam
    October 31, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    I’m intriqued about both of these examples Jake. Please explain.

    Actually the worst I ever experienced was at St Martin’s School of Art. I walked into one of the cubicles and dropped my trousers, was about to sit down when I realized someone had had an H Block-style ‘dirty protest’ in there. All over the walls, bog, floor. Talking of shit, Mitch suspending the bag over the bath at 66a for Tony was one of the truest acts of love I’ve ever seen. Well I didn’t actually see it.

  24. baron von zubb
    baron von zubb
    November 1, 2008 at 11:30 am

    Jesus, thats pretty gross.
    Needs at least 2 seperate requesters so I can blame the requesties for inflicting it on the rest of the blog . .
    (BTW folks ’66A’ is the place that Ian Asbury stayed at. It wasnt only the drug activities that worried him, as he mentioned in the press).
    We were a jolly silly bunch.

  25. Penguin
    Penguin • Post Author •
    November 1, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    Go on then Baron, give it up…

  26. Sam
    November 1, 2008 at 7:39 pm

    What else was Astbury worried about? No immoral fortitude these northerners.

  27. baron von zubb
    baron von zubb
    November 4, 2008 at 7:14 pm

    I dunno what he was worried about.
    He seemed to be having an OK time.
    Maybe he’d just left home?
    66A was probably a very scary place.
    I’ll give it all to mummy in a min.
    Run outa time.
    (btw was Bob n Lisa on the front cover of NME? Were B&R a big band at one point? How cool is that. Am I getting confused?)

  28. Graham Burnett
    Graham Burnett
    November 4, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    > 1: Dial House one is pretty impressive…see photo gallery for some pics.

    I once helped built a toilet at Dial House. There’s a DVD about it as well

    There was a squat in Southend in the 80s that had no toilet at all. It had been completely smashed and nobody bothered to put a new one in.

  29. baron von zubb
    baron von zubb
    November 5, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    The ferry from Madras to The Andaman Islands was at the time(1995) new, made in Gdansk to European stadards. All the plumbing was fine.
    As i entered the bunk class bogs & washing area they were being jet hosed down in prepepaeration for the off. So its all good. Its a four day crossing & good to sanitise them properly. The bogs were made of steel. So thats steel floor, walls, doors, urinials the crappers themselves, everthing to facilitate cleanlyness. They were prestine, shiny new & smelling of disinfectant.
    I went off to find out where all the whities kipped, which was illegally, on the open decks next to the unused pool at the top of the boat. Nicer than four days in the below deck bunks with a million others and their families. The stewards just let us be.
    After putting up me hammock, and watching the Indian coastline recide into the distance maan, I went back to bunk class to retrieve the blanket that i’d left on the bunk to discourage bunk squatters.
    Thought i’d use the loo as up on deck they were a fair walk away.
    A few hours ago it had been pristine.
    Now there were turds at the entrance to the whole area. I picked my way round them only to realise that these turds emminated from each crapper cubicle, in nice little rows, all shapes and sizes. Fab. I was stunned.
    Some more indian wierd shit (sorry) but I’d already seen it years before in the golden temple Sikh HQ in Amritsar when entering fronm Pakistan.
    I just thought the loo’s plumbimng had gone. Happens all the time in India, things just dont work, alot.
    But all the other loos on the boat worked so why didnt folk just use them?And anyway in India and in alot of places one goes go without plumbing anyway. And they had been hosed down with water from the area. So the plumbing was OK.
    Fast forward to the trip back. I’d been living out on the beach, on the edge of the rain forest, without shoes. Cut my foot, it had got infected badly, from the coral. On the way back I made use of the ships doctor. Meant for the crew really but I was limping as it was turning ‘troppo’.
    I asked him about the loos. He did the trip all the time so he might know.
    He explained that Indian peasents, the occupants of bunk class, are superstious of holes in the ground believing that they’re evil and thus to shit in one is gonna be bad luck.
    So they shit as near as they can. But not in them. And once the evil hole has been decided as such by the first turder no one gonna go against that. Hence the lines of turds. Ok
    I realised later, it stems from the correct assumption that in the wild a ready made hole is likely to be a snake hole. India has four killer snakes so best not to risk it.
    Why they couldnt make the leap from hole in the scrub to a hole in a loo on boat is somewhat perplexing.
    Thats the nature of belief, I ‘spose.
    But I’ve not come across that particular phenomoina in any other country.

  30. Robin Basak
    Robin Basak
    August 26, 2009 at 1:58 pm

    I first saw Brigandage play live at a pub in London with Null & Void,the Wet Paint Theatre Company and Blood and Roses. I was there for Blood & Roses but this gig stands out in my mind – and I can actually remember who played – because the music & atmosphere were fantastic.

  31. Robin Basak
    Robin Basak
    August 26, 2009 at 2:14 pm

    baron von zubb said
    “I realised later, it stems from the correct assumption that in the wild a ready made hole is likely to be a snake hole. India has four killer snakes so best not to risk it.”

    In Puri, India I was unable to use the hotel toilet because a large frog was sitting in it. The frog was massive and refused to budge even when I poured water on it. I returned a while later and the frog was gone from the bog but was now wedged in the hinge side of the door and would have splattered if I’d shut the door. Eventually the frog moved and I was able to go for a crap – not dangerous like a snake but the sort of minor problem which exists in some countries.

  32. gerard
    August 26, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    Graham says:

    “I once helped built a toilet at Dial House. There’s a DVD about it as well

    I once did a shite in self same bog. To keep it on topic, it looked a bit like a killer snake.

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