Television Personalities

23 03 2006

Dirty Little Faces. Dustin’s Bar Mitzvah
Barfly Camden 22.03.06

On the District Line home there was a pissed Eastern European woman with a fucking parrot. I’m not kidding. The parrot spoke more English than she did. Other people spoke to the parrot but I just watched. It was ridiculous, insane, deeply deeply shit, but still entertaining. Does that describe the moment they call punk? It certainly describes tonight.

Get Alex DeLarge to stab Supergrass in the heart with a needle full of Stiff Little Finger blood and then get The Ramones to spunk in the open wound and you might have Dustin’s Bar Mitzvah. Lead singer Dave Lazer asks for a cigarette and someone offers him baccy but Dustin’s just don’t have that kind of time! This band just don’t hang around! There is noise to be made!

Eeeeeeventually they are followed, kind of, by Television Personalities. You haven’t heard of Television Personalities? You looooser! I Googled them like, aaaages ago. They’ve been all over the papers (apparently they were Kurt Cobain’s favourite band, whoever he was), hence half the crowd here tonight. The other half is made up of former punks who haven’t been out this late for seventeen years (“Who are these idiots? Why is it so loud? When are TV Personalities on? Where’s my tea?”).

After all the build-up, TVP prove what happens if you put a binman in front of a bunch of ex-punks. It’s heartwarming to see singer Dan Treacy begging the crowd to “fucking shut up” every time they cheer, and bass player Ed ‘Mill Hill Self-Hate Club’ Ball fondly guiding him back towards the set list. Treacy has been a junkie, he’s been in prison, but tonight he is a star – for as long as his guitar is plugged in, the sound holds out, and the pissed-up twats in the front stay off the stage.

Unfortunately none of those things happen and suddenly we’re watching the biggest car crash ever written about. Treacy retreats to the side of the stage, the sound falls apart, singer Victoria Yeulet gets in an argument with the same twat who’s been wandering onstage all night, and then it all ends in chaos. And not for the first time either. “Refund!” shouts some girl to my right, but that’s missing the point. We paid for a show, and we got a show.

Or half a show. The songs, by the way, sounded fantastic. I Hope You’re Happy Now seemed mostly improvised and was mostly amazing.

This was a car crash of a gig. After a lengthy tuneup, Dustin’s Bar Mitzvah came back and tore through Part-Time Punks, the Personalities ‘big tune’ with a breezy energy. ‘Ah’, said Deborah, ‘you’re appreciating this ironically.’

No! I replied, I spit on people who appreciate things ironically! I appreciated this because it was great! It was a mess but it was a glorious mess. Although, if this was what gig-going was like every bloody week in 1977, no wonder they were all so pissed off.

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3 responses

26 03 2006
deb

excellent review!! wow! people should read this! you have a beautiful knack for analogies & metaphor. i probably spelled that wrong, don’t let the blog get offended! & thanks for the shout out, even if it was just to say i was wrong about something. big up myself!!

xxdeb

26 03 2006
deb
16 12 2012
Wilbert Reiland

European women are always nice looking women.”

Hottest short article on our own internet site
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