Angelic Upstarts: Bullingdon Bastards

Hark, the herald Upstarts sing.

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The sad passing of Leatherface and occasional Upstart guitarist Dickie Hammond marked a depressing end to 2015 for the Tyne & Wear punk scene.

And although this new year marks the 40th anniversary of punk rock with all kinds of celeb and media-friendly preening celebrations planned, it’s Oi, the snot-nosed younger brother of punk, that’s endured the deaths, upheavals and upsets of the past few decades without compromising its original agenda.

The Nazi knucklehead bands have thankfully long departed, but Mensi and his brigade rossi of radgy gadgies are still bashing the establishment at the helm of red-or-dead Oi. Short, sharp shocks at a blistering pace, all tracks are satisfyingly within the four-minute mark, from opener Tories, Tories, Tories (Out, Out, Out) to Give The Fox A Gun.

After all, the UK’s political landscape is currently reverting back to the 1980s, so why not Oi? We would have missed it if it had gone away.

Alex Burrows

A regular contributor to Louder/Classic Rock and The Quietus, Burrows began his career in 1979 with a joke published in Whizzer & Chips. In the early 1990s he self-published a punk/comics zine, then later worked for Cycling Plus, Redline, MXUK, MP3, Computer Music, Metal Hammer and Classic Rock magazines. He co-wrote Anarchy In the UK: The Stories Behind the Anthems of Punk with the late, great Steven Wells and adapted gothic era literature into graphic novels. He also had a joke published in Viz. He currently works in creative solutions, lives in rural Oxfordshire and plays the drums badly.