March 6 1993
Life But How To Live It, Dirt, Onion Breath, Female Hercules
March 6 1993
Life But How To Live It, Dirt, Onion Breath, Female Hercules
Feb 24 1989
Not Our World, Keltic Konviction, Lawnmowers, (Malicious Damage added on the night)
The two Not Our World gigs in the Grattan were full of incident. During the first one there was crowd trouble in the venue but, more worryingly, there was trouble outside the second week. Timo played bass in Keltic Konviction. He later moved on to Shred, where he played with the Bearded lady and Shane (both from Not Our World who then moved to Joan of Arse). The gig he mentions was chaotic. Some people came along just to cause a bit of havoc. This was familiar to gigs at the time. Abusive heckling was a craze but the situation got out of control that night when a glass was thrown on stage .
Timo caught the brunt of it and finished his set with a bloodied head. Thankfully no more glasses were thrown at Hope gigs and Timo had no interest in, or intention of pursing the matter legally (which has happened at other gigs where people have been injured). The second gig was, again, memorable for the wrong reasons. One of our friends had her handbag stolen outside. She ran upstairs to the venue, visibly shaken. Deko and I went chasing instinctively. We didn’t find the culprit and Susanne was very upset. As organiser of the gig I felt responsible but she got off better than Timo had the previous week.
Those gigs were turning points. Both attracted 150 people and through the trouble came about a wish for people to make things better. We wanted to be able to go to gigs in peace and not have to worry about safety. Through Not Our World (and then ‘Hope’) a policy was made to encourage friendliness at gigs, let people see that they weren’t just there to be consumers, that they were at a gig to be part of something – something they could find comfort in and something they could be comfortable with. That became the plan, the “hope”.
October 2 2015
We Shall Overcome benefit
Paranoid Visions, I AM A Carcrash. Checkpoint, The Black Pitts, Kiss My Acid, Cross Guns
December 15 1991
Green Day, Dog Day
Yeah, yeah, it’s all true. Green Day played in the Attic. It was a wintry Sunday afternoon. They used my bass, They covered up my Sink stickers. They took off their trousers and 40 people saw it all. Retrospectively when people talk to me about ‘hope’ they mention Green Day, Fugazi and Nomeansno. If all the people who say they saw Green Day when they played with Dog Day in the Attic were actually there then the already unsteady floor in the venue would definitely have collapsed. On the day we lost £50 and the floor was perfectly safe. It’s kind of novel to be able to say that they played but I would much prefer if I was able to give you a recipe from the band Dublin wasn’t really the party city and Green Day left for Belfast straight after the gig, but not before getting some directions and food. They had enjoyed themselves so much in Belfast the previous night that they wanted to get back as quickly as possible.
1991 ended for ‘hope’ with this gig. We had directly put on 29 gigs. We had been involved with other gigs in Cork, Belfast, Trinity, NCAD, and Kill. People from other counties in Ireland were starting to ask about putting on gigs (they either got the address from REACT or travelled up to Dublin for a gig). React was up to 5000 copies (I even find that hard to believe looking back) and there was an endless supply of bands looking to play. Being careful not to get carried away Green Day put a sense of perspective on it. 40 people.
March 8 1992
Nessun Dorma, Zygote, SMH
The Grattan (moved from The Attic)
The Nessun Dorma gig the following month had just as poor a turnout. Both bands had travelled over in a bus, not the fancy tour bus kind that many bands travel in but a bit like a school bus (they’re the journeys the retired buses go on in Ireland).Like Andrew with Decadence Within, Emmet from Cork organised for Nessun Dorma to come over to Ireland and asked us to accomodate them in Dublin. Charlie’s was now closed to afternoon gigs so we had to try and find a venue open to allowing “underage people” in to a gig.
The Attic weren’t too keen as, even though the floor had been reinforced, they didn’t want to go through the “hassle” of doing it again. Peter Quigley had been looking after the booking of the Grattan and the Fox since Not Our World started playing and he agreed to try an afternoon gig if it was a Sunday. Saturday is a traditionally busy shopping day and bars were uncomfortable compromising local businesses by allowing loud rock music and encouraging large congregations outside their establishments while their neighbours tried to get shoppers in. This suited Nessun Dorma so we tried for the Grattan.
Sundays in Ireland generally have a lethargic feel to them. For many it’s a lazy day. When very few people showed up for the gig we were very disappointed. This gig in the Grattan must have been the hardest gig all 3 bands have ever played and no doubt the 2 touring bands were very eager to get back into their bus for a rest. The bus was amazing. It was a renovated old bus that the band could use for living in if need be. The atmosphere inside the Grattan was almost churchlike, very sombre. The crowd was poor and most people there were not happy to stay.
Bands that saved a life
The Pleasure Cell
Picture the scene. A boy with an attitude. Wanting to change a world be believes is coming to get him. Him and his punk mates. Only. Everyone over 21 is out to get him. Noone understands. Only when his music is playing is he happy. It’s 1985 and Dublin is grey. School means nothing. There’s very few jobs anyway. As a kid this boy loved sport. Played all day. Then punk rock became his training sessions. Bass guitar and plectrums replaced footballs and boots. Writing letters became his passion. Writing to people in bands. Waiting for those postal deliveries. Twice a day.
Of course the distraction of school existed. One day there was a small piece in Hot Press magazine about a band called The Pleasure Cell. It seemed interesting. The band were singing abut life in Finglas and listened to English counterparts like new Model Army. The lead singer was a recovering heroin addict and was happy to discuss it. They were giving some lunchtime talks in Bolton Street College. School attendance would be a problem, Of course that turned into no problem as a walk into town on the day of the Bolton Street gig was the only wise thing. Worry about school afterwards.
And so I trooped into Bolton Street and was blown away by the honesty of the three playing members and 1 non playing member of the band. As someone who didn’t drink swimming above water in a sea of alcohol that was my community I wanted in. Then the band played a set. I was rooted to my set. I wanted to go up and hug the 4 lads. Thanks, I’ve found what I’m looking for.
After that I went to see them play ahenever and wherever. They were so inclusive and encouraging in all I did. The band I was in at the time, Kill Devil Hill, played a mutated psychobilly sonud. It was fun but I was never really part of it. When the Pleasure cell were going to appear on Irelands biggest tv programme (most tv sets in the country had this show on every week) Noel was going to sing proudly wearing his homemade Kill Devil Hill t-shirt. I hadn’t the heart to tell him the night before when he finished it that we had split up that day. I did tell him and he wore his shirt buttoned over iot on the night.
They fused the Clash and new Model Army and had some rousing songs. Whether singing about police violence, changing your world or screaming for a brighter future they ploughed an independent route. Their self-released New Age single came out in 1988 on their own Statement label. With the single they issued a brick when sending it to the press. Do with this as you will.
Grey Dublin held little allure for people wishing to play music in the 80’s and the band headed to London, saaadly for me. When I travelled to see them in Hammersmith Clarendon they seemed to think that image might help them obtain some sort of record deal. As they squatted around Hammersmith they practiced and played wherever possible but never quite made that breakthrough. When they left Dublin they played to a packed Teachers Club, that was their highlight. Sold it out on their own merits.
After that they became one of the many thousands who emigrated, lost in the dreams of a better workd outside green and grey Ireland. They left a huge mark on me and when we were putting things together as Hope Promotions / Collective I endeavoured to emulate the Pleasure Cell philosophy at their gig. Greet people as they come in, treat them as you would wish to be treated. That way we can all be in this together