The Dirtbombs - 93 Feet East
This show may have taken place a few weeks ago but Noisy Londonist has been off for a while and we'd hate to think that we missed an opportunity to let you all know about one of the greatest bands no-one's ever heard of. There may of course be many greatest bands no-one's ever heard of but we haven't heard of them. We have on the other hand seen The Dirtbombs and they're certainly contenders for the crown.
Formed way back in 1992 by singer/guitarist Mick Collins, The Dirtbombs was his idea to create a band that was completely different from everything else around at the time. That will explain then the two bass players, two drummers thing going on. And the insane mash of sounds blasting out of the PA. Often unfairly labelled as a garage band they're much more difficult to pidgeonhole than that. When asked how to describe their music Collins said: We don't. Rock 'n Roll is Rock 'n Roll.
And never a truer word has been spoken since the Dirtbombs represent the spirit of everything that's great about rock 'n' roll: exhilerating, danceable and joyous. They're also very loud but that's just a bonus. First off drummer Patrick throws down the beat for drummer Benjamin to pick up and soon the two of them are laying down a thunderous carpet for bass players Troy and the very tiny Ko to enter on. Then it's Mick's turn to smile at us all before launching into an hour and fifteen of sweat, mayhem and energy. Watching The Dirtbombs is like being caught up in a musical hurricane. It's impossible not to dance, it's impossible not to grin and it's impossible not to be blown away by the sheer force of their performance. For this band 100% seems to be far short of the mark.
Musically The Dirtbombs draw from a great spectrum of influences and sounds. There's the raw energy of The Ramones, the pop punk of Blondie, the psychadelic blues of Hendrix, the perfect pop of Phil Spector and the beautiful soul of Curtis Mayfield to name but a few that spring to mind. Everything's played with an intensity that many bands half their age would find it hard to match and you can't help but be left open mouthed at the wonderous mayhem taking place in front of you.
It's no surprise then that the show ends in chaos, the two drummers left crashing away at their kits, before standing exhausted on their drum stools to the cheers of an equally sweaty and exhausted audience. As Ko tries to climb back on stage she's brought to the ground by Troy and there's a mass of bodies on the floor, playfully rolling about. In no uncertain terms do these guys ROCK and should you wish to discover the joys of this funky fivesome then you can do a lot worse than check out their recent singles and covers compilation: If You Don't Already Have A Look, out now on InTheRedRecords.
Picture not from the show, we didn't have our camera that night