Rebellion 2016

If there’s one thing the 1st weekend in August heralds for me, it’s the realization that it’s that time of year again-Rebellion 2016 is upon us. Only this year is different. Two milestones in Punk are to be remembered and celebrated in equal measure. First and foremost it’s the (official) 40th Anniversary of Punk in the UK. Secondly; and some might argue more importantly it’s the 20th Anniversary of a certain music festival-Rebellion Punk Music Festival to be precise. The festival once again sees some major changes this year and on its 20th Birthday they (the organisers) have pulled out all the stops. More bands, more stages, new stages, big names, and anything else I might have missed! So, where to start? As is the norm these days me & my cohorts arrive one day early so as to get our wristbands and relax ourselves into the whole weekend of festivities. No traffic between Bournemouth and Blackpool means we arrive bang on 2pm and collect said wristbands. For us veterans it’s a chance to get our programmes and “mark out” which bands we aim to see. We partake in a couple of drinks in the Rose and Crown just around the corner (the main meeting point for Punks and Skins and the likeminded, the night before the main event).

The Tache (nightclub) upstairs plays host to 6 bands as a pre-fest show. The princely sum of £6 gets you entry with a chance to catch a few of the weekends acts “blowing off the cobwebs” before the main event. An early dinner for me facilitates this and I get in just in time to catch the end of a set by Pussycat Kill, who play each song with an explosive energy. This Spanish quartet have “Riot Grrrl” influences in abundance and set the bar pretty high early on. “The Fuckdust 4” are up next with their Ramones-esque “Brit Punk”. “Ripped Off Again” is anthemic, as is “Suicide Station” which is very loud. The singer is enigmatic and has a distinct stage presence and attire to match, while the huge snare hitting is a big feature in their sound.

Pussycat Kill
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“Litterbug” are up next. This bass-heavy 3 piece are again very loud. The drums are huge and while I didn’t catch any song titles, they did a great cover of The Specials “Do Nothing”. Keeping with the volume levels “X Ray Eyes” bludgeon us with their output. It’s bassy again and “Infamous” seems somewhat apt! They are a uniform band in every sense in their matching red attire and “X-Ray Spex”. By the time “Drongos For Europe” hit the stage this near 50 year-old is feeling the pace. I stick around for “Mayday” and “Who’s Army” and a couple more, but am clearly feeling the pace! The huge drums, clicky guitars and anthemic vocal delivery are not lost on this now energetic crowd, who find themselves in good voice. I miss “Choking Susan” but will try and catch them during the festival.

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I beat a retreat back to my hotel in preparation for the main event, and what an event it turned out to be!

Pre-showPart 1Part 2Part 3Part 4

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