great are only great because we are on our knees – let us
Legendary punk/oi titans THE GONADS are back with another red-hot
testimony to the gutsy spirit of South London hooligan rock and
roll. ‘Glorious Bastards’ is 18 tracks of filth and
fury, released by Contra Records in Germany. It mixes protest
(‘Oily Rag’, ‘Ian Tomlinson’, ‘Fat
Cat Splat’) with pure punk anthems (‘Noise Bastards’,
‘Spring-Heel’d Jack’), respect (‘Billy
McFadzean'), sauce (‘Badly Done’, ‘Reinfected’)
and street culture (‘Charlton Boys’).
Punk, oi, oi-tone, oi-core... call us what you will, THE GONADS
have been kicking against the pricks since 1977, with a back catalogue
of classic songs including ‘Jobs Not Jails’, ‘Tucker’s
Ruckers’, ‘TNT’, 'The Joys Of Oi', ‘I
Lost My Love (To A UK Sub’), ‘Alconaut’, ‘Oi,
Mate’ and ‘Punk Rock Will Never Die.’
were street-punk before the term was invented, helping to launch
the ‘real punk’ movement that was oi – a howl
of rage from the terraces, back streets and council estates of
the UK that found an echo around the world. Oi! ain’t about
posing and preening. It’s about who we are: the English
working class, having a laugh and having a say. The GONADS hate
snobbery, ignorance, apathy, bigotry and PC bores. We support
unity across our scenes. As our friend Garry Johnson said, back
in 1981: “United is the thing to be, think how strong we
can be, united against society.”
NACHO JASE, guitar – Let’s Get Waysted!
I picked up my first guitar at 13 from a car
boot sale and I have never looked back. I bought Bert Weedon's
Play In A Day book and learnt a few chords but the rest is self
taught. I learnt to play by ear, from listening to rock & metal
& thrash & skater bands, going to live gigs to see the likes
of like Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Slayer, Anthrax, Metallica,
Suicidal Tendencies. At 17 I got into the sleazy LA rock band
scene, with bands like Love/Hate, LA Guns and Guns & Roses,
which caught my attention. My favourite punk bands are the Ramones,
the Cockney Rejects and the UK Subs. Bands I have played with
include The Atoms, Moonshine, Cosmic Groove Juice, Mr Fungus
(vox/guitars), and Hoffman Sloth (bass). In 2007 I was invited
by Fin Muir, who I’d been jamming with, to join Waysted on rhythm
guitar. Waysted released ‘The Harsh Reality’ on Cargo Records
and we played some awesome shows including Hard Rock Hell 2
in front of 5,000 people. In 2009 I was invited by "RD" MacGonad
(who also plays drums for Waysted) to join Gonads on lead/rhythm
guitar. So far I have recorded The Gonads Greater Hits Volume
1 & 2 and the ‘Charlton Boys’ e.p. One recent Gonads highlight
for me was playing Punk & Disorderly Festival in Berlin. Both
bands are close to my heart and we have a lots of fun on the
road! I am just about to finish off ‘Love Needles & Sympathy’,
an album I have co-written and produced with Pete Way (UFO/Waysted)
which also features Herman Rarebell (Scorpions) and Clive Edwards
Guitars: I use a beat up old Gibson Epiphone
SG guitar in Cherry Red. This is my work horse. I love how it
sounds & plays & it can really take a beating on the road I
also own a Gibson Epiphone EB3 Bass in Jet Black & a 1969 Yamaha
FG-300 Nippon Gakki Red Label acoustic guitar. Amps: I use a
Marshall AVT 50 combo for all live gigs & recording. I absolutely
love the tone I get on this little amp. FX: I use a Hardwire
DL-8 delay/looper for a touch of slapback delay and a TC Electronics
Polytune for lightning fast tuning between songs. Strings &
Picks: Ernie Ball - Skinny Top Heavy Bottom, Jim Dunlop - USA
Favourite Drinks: Guinness/Fireball Cinnamon
Whiskey. Favourite Foods: Indian - Chicken Ceylon or Dhansak.
Favourite Film: Fear & Loathing In Las Vegas.
Nickname: Beano Boy.
Gal Gonad, vocals – Keeping It Rude!
I grew up loving Trojan reggae, Tamla, Ska, Slade,
Bowie, glam, Hendrix and heavy rock bands – Sabbath, Lizzy etc.
I caught the punk bug in 76. The late 70s were a special time;
there were so many great bands about. As well as the obvious
Clash/Pistols/Buzzcocks etc, I really rated The Ruts, the Jam
and the Skids. Then there were Madness, the Specials, the Cockney
Rejects, the Upstarts, Cock Sparrer, Iron Maiden, Rose Tattoo,
UFO, The Saints, Motorhead, Secret Affair, the Small Hours...
I could reel off a long list. Later the Business, Blitz, Dexys,
the Burial, and the Blood who should have been massive – just
as Case should have been. I loved the power and aggression of
hardcore, especially Black Flag, the Bad Brains and Agnostic
Front. All the giants: Elvis, Johnny Cash, Springsteen, Costello,
Dury, Max Miller, Judge Dread. Fifties US rock, Sixties UK rock
– especially The Kinks and the Small Faces. These days I’m into
everything from Random Hand and Rancid to Buster Shuffle via
Booze & Glory, Night Of Treason, Maninblack, Pope and Rival
Sons all of whom feature regularly on my podcast.
As well as the Gonads, I co-created Prole with
Steve Kent and was nefariously involved with the Orgasm Guerrillas.
I recently formed the SkaNads as a Gonads spin-off devoted to
rude reggae of the 69 kind. I write songs on a Yamaha FX370C
and a JS 1600.
Nickname: The Colonel.
Mick Maverick, bass – The Sound of Thunder!
I grew up loving Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden and
Dio. I got into punk and Oi later, especially SLF, Sham, PIL,
Cock Sparrer, the Cockney Rejects, Vice Squad and more recently
Evil Conduct. The first gig I went to was Ian Gillan at Corby
Festival Hall. My first band was a school band called Spank
Yea Monkey, which never played live. I had some success with
Crystal Daze, an original dark rock band. We played some sell
out shows and got lots of record company interest, including
an offer from EMI but the Band imploded under the pressure.
From 1988 to 92, I joined The Royal Green Jackets. Back in Civvy
Street, I worked with an acoustic band playing Nirvana and Pearl
Jam covers. We supported the likes of the legendary Gino Washington
and Adrian Smith & Friends. For the last two decades I’ve played
with Bustagut, a just-for-fun side project with musicians in
my home town. Other bands I’ve played with include The Faces
Of Sarah, and The City Of Vultures, a Grunge Rock band with
influences from Nirvana and Pearl Jam. I joined The Gonads in
2009 and have recorded Greater Hits Volume 1 Plums, which Lemmy
Kilmister reckons is ‘the sound of thunder.’ Volume 2: The Mutts
Nuts may even be better but Volume 3 will be the KILLER!”
Basses: Music Man Stealth - you will not find
one! Wayne from Vice Squad offered me two Standard Music Mans
for it. Baby Blue Music Man. ESP 5 string Jagermeister Custom.
J D Super Natural. Warwick. Fender Jazz. Amps: Mark Bass 2x10
and 1x15 the Sound of Thunder.
Nickname: Mav, Putin.
SOUTH COAST STEVE, drums/percussion - Mumble On!
My first memory of wanting to play drums (or hit
stuff) was when I would use cutlery and tap on the plates, cups
and glasses, or anything to hand. My Ma would tell me to shut
the fuck up! (Here here - Ed) In 1976 punk rock kicked off in
England; I was 13 years old. I became fascinated by the DIY
nature of creating music. I loved the The Clash, Siouxsie &
the Banshees, The Ruts, Sham 69, the Sex Pistols, the UK Subs.
I was fortunate to see one of the last Ruts gigs just before
Malcolm Owen died in 1980. I started playing seriously when
I bought my first drum kit at 18, having saved up through doing
a paper round and milk round. Bands that influenced my playing
apart from the above include Killing Joke, Gang of Four, Joy
Division, Bauhaus, the Cockney Rejects, Discharge, Steel Pulse,
Misty-In-Roots, The Specials, Madness, The Beat, Pearl Jam,
Soundgarden, Queens Of The Stone Age and Rush. Bands that I
have played drums for from my youth are: September Rain (with
my brother Mick Higgins on bass), Eternal Abyss, The Raindogs,
Shadow of Doubt, Cries of Tammuz/Tammuz (albums 'Dumuzi Awakens'
and 'Yezidi'), The Heroines, Ordeal X ,The Faces Of Sarah (album:
'Impurity', ep: 'Lament') Rock-Steady All-stars (authentic ska/reggae/rock
steady band) In June 2010 I joined The Gonads(albums: Plums,
Mutts' Nuts, the Charlton Boys ep). I am also playing drums
for The Outcast Band a high energy, punk-influenced folk/rock
Tama Granstar black/chrome drum-kit, Zildjian
cymbals , Tama Iron cobra double-kick pedals, hard-case flight
cases Mapex Seat. Roland HD-1 electronic kit. Zildian Sticks.
Favourite beer: Newcastle Brown /A nice pot of
Yorkshire Tea. Favourite food: Smoked Salmon, steamed jersey
royal potatoes and side salad. Favourite film: Blade Runner.
Other activities: Pastor, the Church of Oi! Rev of The Church
of Killing Joke.
Nickname: Jim Trott, The Mumbler, the Temp.
Gonads began in the backstreets of Charlton, London SE7 in 1977.
The five-piece band grew out of the remnants of Garry Bushell's
earlier schoolboy band Pink Tent, who were influenced by the Small
Faces and Monty Python with a pinch of Slade, Mott and the Sensational
Alex Harvey Band.
by the Clash and the Pistols, Pink Tent were re-born as punk band
the Gonads souping-up many of their earlier songs such as 'Rob
A Bank' and 'Pink Tent'. The early set also included cover versions
of AC DC's 'Big Balls' and the Small Faces' 'Filthy Rich' as well
as forgotten numbers like 'Red Army', 'Antigalligan Last Bell',
'Darling Harold', 'The Legend of Sam Bartram' and 'Ripper's Delight'.
The original line-up were together for less than a year, playing
at local pubs such as the Lads Of The Village in Charlton and
at parties. The band released just one single 'Stroke My BeachComber
Baby' b/w 'Big Balls' on their own Scrotum label, and were completely
ignored by the rock press.
later the music journalist Christine Cousins described them as
having been "as tight as a gnat's fore-skin and louder than
a Bernard Manning belch." But others remember them as being
rather more chaotic than that sounds. The Gonads attracted a loyal
local following including Tucker and his Ruckers, the Indus Skins
and the Charlton Boys. Highlights of this first incarnation included
the legendary acoustic tour of South London curry houses. They
also unsuccessfully approached Charlton striker Derek 'Gypo' Hales
for management. When he turned them down, for a laugh they accepted
a management offer from a local character called Dodgy Dave Long
who immediately decided the band should stop gigging and "hold
back until the time is right". They would never have been
heard of again if Garry - Gal Gonad - hadn't reformed the band
in 1981 to show solidarity with the Oi Movement. Gal was in the
forefront of Oi, he managed the Cockney Rejects and compiled the
first four Oi albums. The second and most famous Gonads line-up
included Steve Kent on guitar (later replaced by Steve Whale,
Clyde Ward and then JJ Bedsore) and Mark Brennan on bass, with
a succession of drummers including at one stage Mark Brabbs from
was replaced as manager by the poet Garry Johnson who famously
lived "in an 'ouse in 'Ackney with an outside loo" and
the band's golden era beganin earnest. The Gonads were famously
"street-socialist" with a commitment to older working
class traditions, including Music Hall and stag comics. The 'Pure
Punk For Row People' ep ran the Anti-Nazi League phone number
on the back (along with ones for Alcoholics Anonymous and Beki
Bondage) and the band supported the Prisoners' Rights organization
and the League Of Labour Skins.
Classic Gonads recordings such as 'Jobs Not Jails', 'Dying For
A Pint', 'Punk Rock Will Never Die' 'I Lost My Love To A UK Sub'
(based on a true story), 'Tucker's Ruckers Ain't No Suckers',
'Hitler Was A Homo', and 'The Joys Of Oi' established them as
one of the greatest Oi! bands of all time. The Gonads found time
to kick-start Punk Pathetique, and successfully pioneered the
punk/metal cross-over with the song 'TNT' on the Total Noise ep
most of their contemporaries, the band drifted apart over the
next couple of years but the Gal Gonad/Steve Kent alliance went
on to create both Prole and the Orgasm Guerrillas as studio projects.
Gal also managed Charlton's other anarchic sons The Blood (1984-5).
Gonads weren't to exist in a concrete form again until 1990 when
Gal teamed up with old buddies Clyde Ward and Colin Blood (Cardinal
Jesushate) to record the original versions of 'Lager Louts' and
'British Steel'. They jammed a bit, but nothing serious happened
until 1996 when Gal and Clyde recorded 'The Lottery Song' and
the as yet unreleased 'Mystic Meg' and 'Give Her A Dog For Xmas'.
A year later, they recruited Casanova Kev on bass and the core
of the new Gonads was born to record the comeback single 'Oi!
Nutter' b/w '(What's The Story?) England's Glory'.
1998, the Gonads toured the USA with Rockin' Dave on guitar and
the Romulan on drums. Albums 'Back & Barking', 'Schitz-oi-phrenia'
and 'Old Boots, No Panties' followed, along with a Rebellion appearance
in Blackpool. The Ska song 'Oi Mate' proved to be the band's most
popular live song to date. But Clyde's production commitments
kept them off the road for long periods of time. Frustrated, Gal
was about to break up the Gonads once and for all until New York
fan André Schlesinger (formerly of The Press, now with
Maninblack) persuaded him to keep going. Gal recruited Tony Feedback
(ex-Angelic Upstarts) and Scoops (of Superyob) on bass and with
a changing procession of drummers (including the legendary Paul
MacGonad of Waysted) began gigging regularly again. 2008 saw the
'Live Free, Die Free' album; followed at the end of 2009 by 'Glorious
2009 the band played Germany (the Punk & Disorderly Festival)
and Sweden for the first time, returning to Germany for a mini-tour
and the Total Oi Festival in 2010. A brief, inglorious period
saw legendary rock lunatic RD (aka “MacGonad”) join
as drummer, however this association ended after just four gigs
because of what it would be polite to describe as “musical
differences.” But maniacal RD did help put together the
current band line-up which consists of Gal, Nacho Jase (guitar),
Mick Maverick (bass), and South Coast Steve on drums. Under the
watchful eye of associate comrade manager FB, the new Gonads bounce
ever upwards and onwards towards our goal of Professionalism.
The band has just (Sept 2010) recorded a shit-hot sixteen-track
Greater Hits album which makes everything that has gone before
sound like a rehearsal. Projects for 2011 include gigs in Northern
Europe and Eastern Europe, Gal's first solo album and the coming
of the Franken-Skin. Be afraid, be very afraid.
Colin 'Fat Col' Gannon, tour manager, Addick and lifelong fan