Live Review: Spoilers, Dealing With Damage & Pardon Us

Our Alex Goose was at the London Brixton Queen’s Head on a Saturday night to see a packed bill of fiery punk goodness!

For a genre most often associated with youthful rebellion, punk certainly does sound good in older hands. This year alone from Slam Dunk to Rebellion and countless other gigs/festivals, we’ve seen many a veteran band play with the kind of conviction and energy that belies their age, and although none of tonight’s bands are what you could call spring chickens, they’ve all managed to hone their craft without sacrificing the inner fire and sense of discontent that fuels all great punk bands.

If there was an award for hardest-working limb tonight, it would go to the right hand of Pardon Us’s guitarist/vocalist Morgan Brown. He’s got serious chops, but for those times when only some trusty power chords will do, the Johnny Ramone-style ‘buzzsaw’ attack comes into play.

The Liverpool trio come across as the missing link between Snuff and Hüsker Dü on the likes of ‘Charter City Blues’, and that’s a great place to be for both them and us. Be sure to check out the recently-released (and fabulously-titled) ‘Dig Your Own Grave (And Save)

Pardon Us, London Brixton Queen's Head, pic by Clare Dowse

With his blue shirt and red guitar strap, Dealing With Damage vocalist/guitarist Ed Wenn has something of a (most likely unintentional) postman vibe going on tonight. And boy, can he and his band deliver the goods.

We Make Bombs To Feel Safe’ sounds even more brooding and ominous than on record (the record in question being this year’s superb ‘Use The Daylight’), whilst on the flipside of that coin, ‘Bigots Vs The Mad Professor’ is a scorching blast of hardcore punk.

This is anthemic stuff and we can’t recommend it highly enough. Oh, and kudos to bassist Paul Grier for playing a Rickenbacker, because in Punktuation’s mind, Rickenbacker = Lemmy. RIP Mr Kilmister, hope everything is louder than everything else up/down there. 

Dealing With Damage, London Brixton Queen's Head, Pic by Clare Dowse

Spoilers’ guitarist and drummer are wearing Face To Face shirts, and indeed, at times the Canterbury quartet are reminiscent of Trever Keith’s crew if they had a tendency towards short, sharp bursts of breakneck-speed melodic hardcore.

These days, too much so-called pop-punk lacks any real bite, but these guys play it as it oughta be, and recent record ‘There Or Thereabouts’ deservedly gets plenty of airing. Throw in some bizarre between-song banter about pasty consumption (trust me, you had to be there), and it all makes for a triumphant end to the evening.

Oh, and we won’t sign off without doffing our caps to South London Punk Collective, for putting on three great bands in Zone 2 for only a fiver. Here’s to the next one!

Photo Credits: Clare Dowse

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