SKIDS + RAMONAS – CONCORDE 2, BRIGHTON 30.10.21
The Skids are a Scottish punk rock and new wave band, formed in Dunfermline, Fife in 1977 by Stuart Adamson (guitar, keyboards, percussion and backing vocals), William Simpson (bass guitar and backing vocals), Thomas Kellichan (drums) and Richard Jobson (vocals, guitar and keyboards). Their biggest success was the 1979 single ‘Into The Valley’ and the 1980 album ‘The Absolute Game’.
The Scots punk veterans, the Skids, were back in Brighton this evening. Let me say first, they put on a terrific performance with original singer Richard Jobson and original bassist William Simpson. They fired up a set full of those crowd pleasing anthems from the bands 70s and 80s releases and albums plus some of their more recent material from the latest ‘Burning Cities’ album.
As I mentioned before – this was a fabulous mixture of old and new material. A well put together set and perfectly executed. From the get-go Jobson immediately took over the stage, he is a big fella and is captivating, and charming, to watch with his engaging and powerful stage presence. He doesn’t keep still for a second, and wins the “trickiest person to photo” award again for 2021, he previously won this in 2018! I Can’t blame him though – how can you keep still to that music? The crowd, and myself included, joined in and pretty much danced and sang for the whole set!
The Skids hit the Concorde 2 stage to a loud and long lasting rapturous reception. Brighton was ready for this. They opened up with ‘Animation’ and ‘Of One Skin’. A cracking start! A couple more songs in and ‘The Saints Are Coming’ was up and as Jobson pointed out ‘Working For The Yankee Dollar’ means pretty much the same thing as when it was originally recorded.
The band put together some of the most memorable and recognisable tunes of the late 70s. Stuart Adamson, sadly, took his own life in 2001, which Richard Jobson reminded us of with a brief moment of reflection.
The Skids reformed in 2007 to pay tribute to him, with Big Country bandmate Bruce Watson and his son Jamie sharing guitar duties. Great to see this duo back on stage tonight. They have played Brighton a few times now, the last time was pre-Covid in the summer of 2018 and was also in Concorde 2. So good to hear those older classics played with such vigour and replicating that distinctive Adamson unique guitar style. Those included ‘The Saints Are Coming’, ‘Circus Games’, ‘Working For The Yankee Dollar’, and ‘Masquerade’.
The fabulous ‘Circus Games’ rocked us and again those Brighton voices sang out true and loud! Mr Jobson remarked that this gig was the only gig where someone shouted “Albert Tatlock” as they walked on stage – and we were off into a track he told us recorded for a laugh ‘TV Stars!’ The crowd cheered and shouted in time, even drowning out the band at times!
The gig tonight was perfect, astounding! The sound mix and lighting were spot on from the Concorde 2 team. The band was so tight and energetic from start to finish. Richard Jobson’s chat with us and inter-band banter between some of the earlier songs oozed with that warm Scottish charm and humour. There was a “heckler” in the crowd. He may have been amusing at first with the shouts between himself and Jobson. Mr Jobson was clearly getting a little agitated as he was being constantly interrupted. The crowd surrounding this “fan” were also getting fed up with his fella, Jobson delivered a couple of coup de grâce put-downs and he scurried off eventually. Well handled!
With the restrictions eased the Skids are back hard at it and continuing to play live, mixing old and new material. Mr Jobson gave us a heads up for a new album of some of the bands favourite songs due soon. A couple of those were in the set tonight with ‘Pretty Vacant’ (Sex Pistols) and ‘What Do I Get?’ (Buzzcocks).
Get ready Brighton! Three storming songs up – ‘Masquerade’, then that bass thumping and instantly recognisable guitar for ‘Into The Valley’ lit the crowds fuse! ‘Olympian’ closed the set.
“One More Song” and the guys were back to close with ‘Complete Control’ (The Clash).
A triumphant return indeed for the Skids to Brighton. They smashed it with a top quality live performance, and it was great fun to be there. Well played, and many thanks for allowing me to photo the set and for the setlist!
Tonight’s support came from the Ramonas. They had been touring as guests with the Skids. Initially they were formed as an all-girl tribute to the Ramones.
It was great to catch up before they took to the stage – thank you! I have a lot of respect for The Ramonas, and we have met up many times in the past. Always a joy and a pleasure and just have to say gotta love the Ramonas!
I have seen them performing their Ramones tribute sets a good few times now and it’s never boring! They are well worth seeing them do it if you get the chance. They really are rather good at it!
If you have seen them before, but are wondering if the Ramonas can write and/or do their own material, let me assure you they can. They have two solid albums out and a third is about to drop any day of self-penned titles. The Ramonas keep that punk flag flying and have sometimes been joined by UK Subs legend Charlie Harper, who has also contributed to the album releases.
The guys took their place, and the band, not using their Ramones nom de plumes, are Scottish singer Lisa, on bass is Victoria, on drums Camille and on guitar duties is Maxine.
Lisa threw herself onto the stage. The Ramonas have built a sizable following in their own right and with that their confidence has grown. The opening Ramonas salvo was ‘Poser’, from their first album. Brilliant! The crowd moved through from the bar area. ‘Cotton Wool’, ‘Outer Space’ and the wonderful ‘Daily Fail’ were fired at us, almost at a Ramones speed and intensity. There was something special going on and clearly the crowd wanted to come and see what was happening. Soon the venue, down at the front, was packed pretty tight as the Ramonas motored through their 30-minute slot. I enjoyed this set and it was great to see Victoria nail down a number relating to Dee Dee Ramone.
I think there were quite a few Brighton, local based fans packing in near the front. The band are seen fairly regularly in and around Brighton. In addition, not a “1-2-3-4” in sight tonight. I can happily confirm the Ramonas really generated up some “steam heat” and pulsed to the “back beat”, they managed to pull everyone in with their enthusiasm and the joyous generated excitement only music can bring. A quality performance.
Well played the Ramonas, and I loved the new material presented tonight. Put me down for a copy of the new album!
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