My second visit to this years resolution Punk Festival is to see the Instagram legend that is Dick Lucas of dicklucasart in his other job as singer of Subhumans (as well as Citizen Fish and Culture Shock) first gig of the year as he's torn himself away from balancing things for long enough to sing to us this evening.
We arrived just after Rebel Station have started to play and no matter how many flags they have with the band name on them I still keep calling them Rebel Spirit for some reason and it may be to do with how little they stand out and how un-memorable the bands songs were.
That doesn't mean they were bad just a bit too identikit landfill punk and having a singer playing bass in a skirt isn't enough for them to stand out even when he stands on his mum's steps that he's obviously nicked from her kitchen it still doesn't make that much difference.
That said the best of the bands set was probably Cold War Bombs a song that seems far to relevant with what's currently going on, it was that or Root of All Evil that had a pretty good guitar solo in it. It's always brave reusing The Beatles song titles so it's no surprise that Help has a good message but doesn't stick in my head it also puts the dreadful Beatles song in my head instead. They close with a song called Junkie that would have been better if they had just strung together a bunch of quotes from Burroughs novel of the same name.
Next on are The Blunders whose website claims the band are "Walking in the footsteps of wankers" and you can't say fairer than that for this trio from Trowbridge who played a set of top quality dub-punk with good bitter twisted lyrics as they started by asking us who was a Rebel and of course would you know one if you met them.
The list of problems in Problems was long enough and spat at us with plenty of bile and a catchy enough chorus my other half was still singing it three days later while I tried to figure out if it was a tune by Senser that it reminded me of.
They went properly Squat-punk on People Get Smaller although the bands singer and guitarist Mark Gunstone seemed to have stolen a few of his stage moves off of Armoury Show it didn't matter, especially as his vocals remind me of Gary Lammin as they really built a groove and got everyone going.
Mark then apologized to his long suffering other half before they played the Lovely Lovely Helen in tribute to the poor woman, I'm sure she had some choice words of advice for him and the band on hearing this song that has really stayed in my head, damn that chorus is catchy.
They went an got properly lost in a supermarket with a song about the Cillit bang adverts and what you have to do to disinfect your lives that reminded me a bit of the 90's band Stimulator. Gun crime was next for the band's ire and they told us the tale of Steve's Beretta it sounds like he should have been armed with an empty gun.
They closed by inviting us all to join the bands Legion in helping to overthrow the idiots running the show, it's full of spite and anger and a top dubby punk tune of the sort that I used to hear being played by DJ Brainbox Pollution back in the day.
Then it's time for Subhumans playing a far smaller stage than the ones I usually see them on at Rebellion but that makes no difference to the power potency and anger of Dick Lucas and his merry men who are still busy touring last years Crisis Point album the bands first new album since 2007 that includes a stencil to help you spray paint the bands name on all appropriate surfaces.
Dick starts the evening by telling us the first song is about his cat as they launch Into Joe Public that's as you'd expect a full on attack on the brain and gets the younger part of the audience to begin turning the 100 club into a mosh pit the older fans take a good few songs to warm up.
Animal see's Dick stalking the stage like he's seen some hunters who need sabotaging pumping his fist and really making sure that Bruce and Phil really make their guitar and bass as angry sounding as possible.
Dick wishes everyone a happy new Year while acknowledging things hadn't gotten off to a good start as they launched into the fear inducing Terrorist In Waiting about how easy it is to be tagged a Terrorist without ever committing an act of violence. Society seems so strained that we need more rallying calls to bring us together and Dick has a good few of them in this riot of a song that gets the pit going a good bit more.
Dick then signals it's time for an Internal Riot that sadly with much of the bands material only grows with relevance as the years creep by as Trotsky beats the hell out of his drums and the pit goes a good bit mental having their own Internal Riots.
Killing was a speedy blur of invective and concise driven guitar raging at us. The Dick made sure we all understood that we are all a part of the 99% and to never forget it and to rise up and get rid of the evil 1% as soon as we can or even better get the greedy idiots to share the wealth far more evenly so we can all lead good happy lives.
Dick wondered if we had all had enough of the biscuit tins we were given for Christmas at the start of No that just added a nicely surreal touch as I could picture Dick dunking his shortbread in his tea rather than stomping up and down the stage shaking his fists at us.
We then got a timely reminder in this time of information overload that Thought is free and that we should all work at making sure our minds stay as fee as possible. Evolution was dedicated to all the Animals and especially the ones that man exploits and was a fearsome angry and bile ridden blur as most of the half of the 100 club we were in was now a mosh pit.
Work Experience is about how most of us are exploited by our bosses and sadly things aren't getting any better. Dick then attacks the Businessmen which is of course quite ironic as he runs his own business selling all sorts of merch quite well, although he is a far more benevolent and non-exploitative than the targets of his song lyrics.
The place went properly bonkers for Subvert that I think featured the first person to try to stage dive and also someone dropping there glasses and half the mosh pit stopping to look for them a bit of cheer went up when the bloke put them back on!
Dick sounded as worried as we all should be at how relevant the question Whose Gonna Fight In The Third World War is with the current Iranian situation currently unfolding and they played a blistering blitzkrieg version of it.
Minority keeps the invective full on and in our faces as they continue to rage at us as the Mosh pit gets messier and everyone seems happy to have a pause at the end of it as Dick wanders off stage and the rest of the band take a breather while we cheer Dick back onstage for some more.
It seems fitting to this writer that they opened the encore with Rats as I've been arranging the removal of a rat's nest today only not the sorts of Rats that Dick is raging all over the stage about. GGW seemed like they were trying to up the pace somewhat which considering how fast they were playing was going to take some doing.
Not sure if it's exactly the bands credo but Work Rest Play Die was hammered out like it should be the only thing we think about as those drums pummel into our brains and half the crowd mosh like it will be their last chance to do so in 2020.
Then after Dick has thanked us all for showing up and introduced the band they close with a bruising brawl through Religious Wars as once again they try to make everyone see sense and live peacefully together.
This was a great end to a blistering set and as ever the band will be touring all over the place this year with another US tour starting in April go see them if they are anywhere near you still one of the most vital life affirming bands around.