LISTEN: Old punks feel the Urge to reform
Old punks never die - they just end up working for local authorities.
But the past will catch up with some now hard-working public servants, when former regulars of Swansea’s 1970s music scene reform for their first performance since the days of skinny trousers and safety pins.
During the punk/new wave scene of the late 1970s and early 80’s, a familiar name in the city’s music venues was The Urge, former Olchfa school pupils who with some minor personnel changes later morphed into The Dodos.
BELOW: Listen to The Urge from back then:
The group has got together to take a step-back in time, and is using the occasion to release a single originally recorded back in their spikey-topped prime.
It is being released by newly-formed Punkhouse Records, which is jointly-founded by fellow Olchfa alumnus pupil and former Cult and Guns ‘n’ Roses drummer Stephen ‘Haggis’ Harris, and will be filmed as part of a documentary.
The line-up is made-up of Anthony Reed, who works as an engineer, while the rest, brothers Phil and Trev Roberts, Richard Evans, and Steve Garland, are all local authority officers.
Steve, better known as Gags and former musical director for carnival dance and rhythm group Samba Tawe, said: “The purpose of the gig is to celebrate the musical heritage of Swansea from that time
“It will also be a social reunion for anyone from the time, as well as anyone who wants a sample of Swansea punk.
“Swansea had a really big scene and we have people from all over coming UK just to meet up and share life stories, but primarily to have a good time and listen to some music.
“It will be all original music, no covers.”
The event also features band The Lost Boys, which includes Huw Rees and Richard Cowell from acclaimed Swansea alt-folk group Rag Foundation, and will be MC’d for the night by stand-up and poet Ray Bunner Jones.
And three other singles, also recorded back in the day by Swansea groups, will also be released: by The Lost Boys, Autonomes and Venom.
“The singles are all in 7 inch vinyl, because it’s all about marking out the time they came from,” added Gags.
“We played in venues well known in Swansea at the time, from Dora’s, The Coach House, and the Langland Bay Hotel.
“And from humble beginnings, from sweaty pub cellar to studio, we are looking forward to performing together again for this concert 33 years later”.
The gig takes place at The Garage in Uplands on Friday, October 18.