I try never to miss the annual Blockheads Xmas knees up so ‘ere we are again and OY!! OY!!
Support comes from The Rats, featuring two of the original members of the Boomtown Rats (drummer Simon Crowe and lead guitarist Garry Roberts), who blast though a selection of their classic songs. I’d forgotten how many great songs the Rats had (and it’s been a while since I’ve listened to any of them) so it was absolutely brilliant hearing “Mary of the fourth form”, “Looking after number one”, “Like Clockwork”, “She’s So Modern” and “Rat trap” (the first song by an Irish rock band to get to number one in 1978) and of course their other number one “I don’t like Mondays”. I was attending an Irish Catholic grammar school in North-West London when this band was around and it took me right back to those days of hanging out with my Irish and West Indian mates.
Even though there’s only two of the original Rats on stage, Bob Geldof is standing behind me looking on, adding an air of authenticity to the proceedings on stage.
Next up is Eddie and the Hot Rods who have been going since 1977 and are still on the festival circuit. They power through a classic set by shouting “1…2…3…4” at the start of each song then thrashing out their rock ‘n’ roll chords coupled with huge riffs. It’s good, loud and enthusiastic. They also do a couple of decent cover versions of The Who’s “the kids are alright” and Paul Revere & The Raiders’ “(I’m not your) stepping stone”, the song made famous by The Monkees. The Hot Rods classic single from 1977 “Do anything you wanna do” still sounds fantastic and again jolted me back to grammar school days in Lahndahn.
I’ve seen The Blockheads loads of times and reviewed them on here before so there’s not much to say except that they never disappoint and I’ll always go to see them. (They’re playing in Brighton in April 2010 so that’s a no brainer :-)). Derek the Drawer is on vocal duties tonight and it’s a great Blockheads set of newer songs and the stone cold classics.
For the encore they bring out Andy Sirkis complete with huge quiff and big overcoat who leers at the crowd in a Dury-esque manner. He proceeds to gleefully tear through “Reasons to be cheerful part 3” and “Hit me with your rhythm stick” and it’s a perfect finale from an always great live band.
Don’t forget The Blockheads’ film “Sex & drugs & rock ‘n’ roll” (couldn’t really be called anything else could it?) starring Andy Sirkis as Lord Ian Dury himself. http://www.sex-drugs-rock-roll-thefilm.com/
For my previous Blockheads review have a look here
And just ‘cos it’s a classic, here’s Eddie & the Hot Rods with “Do anything you wanna do”.