Mumrah, The Cherry Reds, Dog Cock Dildo

Mike Hall 10/02/2005

The cheapest pint in London welcomes those braving the cold tonight for an evening of straight-up punk in the arse end of Lewisham. Although that cheap beer sounds tempting, not many would expect a turn-out like this for a night promoted as, well, that.

The place is absolutely heaving with punters by the time the buzz band of the evening kick off proceedings (about an hour later than scheduled but you have to expect that in SE London) with an incredibly ridiculous name and a roar of savage attitude.

˜Dog Cock Dildo" (for that truly is their name) have presence, hate, and in vocalist Nicky, an unreconstructed punk rock star-in-the-making, a man who prowls the floor, staring down at the boards as if waiting for them to pick a fight with him.

Mixing up Minor Threat-inspired intensity with Mark E Smith's rambling rants, DCD are an offensive, bitter taste of primal musicianship. They look and sound like this is a therapy session for the seriously aggrieved. Though lyrics are often hard to make out, it seems obvious that revenge and disgust are the common themes here, and a tear through ˜Black Flag" cover ˜Gimme,Gimme,Gimme", reinforces the impression.

Although they may be a little in thrall to their influences, and certainly too anti-fashion to find a place in the current "scene", DCD are a band that remembers what punk meant before it meant Good Charlotte and trying to get on Top Of The Pops:Power, Honesty, Anger and Frustration.

The Cherry Reds are the degenerate mainstays of New X Punk. Like The Clash? Well, so do they.alot. It's not necessarily a bad thing, with smart, contemporary political lyrics and a handful of huge hooks being the result of their devotion. It’s very entertaining stuff for the most part, with guitar/vocals man Danny engaging, physical, often exuberant, and the band as a whole evidently enjoying the simple pleasure of playing.

It's pure street urchin stuff as the band's look will comfortably attest, and in terms of rocknroll entertainment, one could do a lot worse.

Headliners Mumrah are a mighty ska-punk beast, boasting a horn section, old skool oi! influences and more than a few nods in the direction of Reel Big Fish and Less Than Jake. They're a lighthearted bunch to be sure, dropping little metal riffs into the mix while bemoaning the unreliability of girls/life in general. Tight as you like and boundless in energy, Mumrah and a few beers are a decent way for any ska fan to spend a winter's evening.