Yesterday’s Kids at PJ Molloy’s: or, Post Punk Suit Shopping with added Shock and Awe

My Saturday afternoon visit to the City of Dunfermline kind of symbolised the yin and yang of my life these days. On the one hand, the ostensible reason for my visit was to buy a new suit for a  job interview I have coming up this week. On the other, the first thing that made me think of going there was word of one of my favourite bands, Shock and Awe, playing as part of a ‘Punked at PJ’s’ event that very afternoon.

Now, I should have started with the properly journalistically ethical disclaimer that I play in another band with, currently, 60% of the Shock and Awe line up. So my chances of giving an unbiased review are about as great as, oh, I don’t know, my wanting to never get a pint bought for me at an Isaac Brutal gig ever again.

But, to be fair, I have loved the uncomplicated approach Shock and Awe take to the business of producing rock n’ roll long before I was in a band with any of them –  ever since I booked them, sound unseen, for my Dylan tribute night a few years back. Then, acting on advice, I put them last on the bill, and they raised the roof. For other reasons my memory of that night is somewhat hazy, but I  do remember a barnstorming ‘Like A Rolling Stone’ in particular.

On Saturday, the boys (pictured below before the gig, lurking with intent near the toilet area) were reliant on their own material, and fine stuff it is too. Mainly written, I understand, by lead singer Murray Ramone, Shock and Awe specialise in the classic three minute punk song, except boiled down a bit. More like two and a half. Or two minutes flat. In fact Murray claimed one of them came in at 90 seconds, and he could be right.

In any event, the sound is very much that of a punk band playing it fast and loud: perhaps even more so on Saturday, since Graham’s saxophone had broken down the night before so it was three guitars, bass and drums all the way. The words on standards like ‘Yesterday’s Kids’ are simple and direct; this approach perhaps reaches its apogee on ‘Everyone is fucked,’ the lyrics of which (dedicated to the President-Elect on Saturday) consist of:

Everyone is fucked

No one fucking cares

Everyone is fucked

No one fucking cares

Everyone is fucked

And no one fucking cares…

Leonard Cohen it ain’t, but it was all pretty rousing, and the smallish crowd (which may have consisted of me, the next band on, and their followers) were very appreciative.

After that, the prospect of post punk suit shopping (by which I mean shopping after hearing some punk rock, rather than ‘post punk,’ since I have no real clue what the hell that means) seemed a bit of a come down. It was only after I got into the changing room to try something on that I realised I was still wearing the PJ Molloy’s gig wristband.

That kind of did it for me. I didn’t buy the suit.



One comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.