5 Go Mad

Those 5 Go Mad boys are back with another live collection, this time recorded at The Rifle Club (Portsmouth)! If there’s one thing I’ll say about this band they are prolific. Not content to just sit on their arses and wait for gigs to come their way, they are out there networking and pulling gigs here there and everywhere. This collection though is recorded closer to home (their hometown) in fact.

Sounding like it’s been recorded in a demo format it gives the impression they are in a pub back room with 10 of their mates. However, once Alan’s vocal explodes into life you just know they are in the groove. The set opens with “Just Another Anti-War Song” and erupts literally into life. Wozza (drums) is cymbal-heavy throughout while Brian keeps the main beat. None of their humour is missing and fully on display here. Moderate applause greets the song’s ending and then begins the in-between song banter, accompanied by a strange “Haunted House-style” cackle! “Jim’s Teeth” unsurprisingly is dedicated to Jim, who is conspicuous by his absence (again)-and duly harangued by the band in his absence. The song itself is humorously delivered, replete with random swearing and a sharp ending.

Charlie Harper gets a mention before the appropriately titled “Crashed Course”. Wozza’s driving drums are matched by some equally frenetic picking in this little ode to a previous band member, hankered by his wife’s moaning about their gigging schedule! Alan promo’s the merch with banter sparring from Wozza-it’s like a double act. “Ginger Beer” follows and is a celebration of the soft drink, allowing Brian (guitar) his additional vocal duties. It’s hard to take them seriously with this song, but it’s definitely a grower. “Syd Mankini” is relatively new to me and stays in the extreme power-Punk mode, yet Alan’s angry delivery doesn’t mask the lyrical content.

5 Go Mad

“Punk Police” comes next; a cautionary tale about reviewers and critics no less, hiding behind their PC’s while passing judgement on bands they’ve never seen live. Perish the thought, this doesn’t happen does it?! Delivered in an anthemic, bootboy style-a terrace chant for the Punks. Even more aggressive vocalising from Alan on “Mockney Cockney” – yep we all know one, again replete with swearing, this is a live Punk album after all! Wozza lowers the tone somewhat pre-song before they debut another newie (to me) in the shape of “Shit Town Rat”. And the omens are good, this could be my new fave 5GM song. A verbal assault against a certain Sir Bob Geldof. It’s honest, direct and above all a great addition to their ever expanding set. A hard and fast Punk song with balls!

“Drinking and Wanking” – true story or not, you the listener decide?! It’s lyrically humorous with a driving beat and more cymbal-led drumming aplenty. The lyrics will amuse some and divide a few, but it’s a staple in their set now and shows the puerile humour within this band, never taking themselves too seriously. Another newie “Friend Of The Stars” stays with their humorous side and self-deprecating attitude, one for the live arena and countless singalongs. ‘Andy’s Bladder’ completes a trio of piss-taking songs (pardon the pun), an ode to Andy’s bladder no less. Another singalong opportunity which will amuse those of us of a certain age who understand the lyrical content. The song ends with a touch of self-indulgence on the drums from Wozza, but doesn’t disappoint.

“PMQ’s” is the last of their new songs and is furiously debuted here on this recording. Another lyrical and vocal rant with added spite from Alan. Gotta be honest I’m none the wiser with the lyrical content, but it matters very little; it’s another stomper of a tune. “She’s Not Quite Right” is a true story of an ill-fated flat share situation which was only gonna end one way. The anger and spite in Alan’s voice really reflects the subject matter relating to the aforementioned. Wozza’s 90mph drums are attempting to keep time with the rest of the band (or vice versa)! They end on self-indulgence once more with the affectionately titled “What Shall We Do With 5 Go Mad”. To take an old sea shanty and Punk it up like this takes balls, and big balls they are too!

It’s hard to ignore 5 Go Mad, they simply go from strength to strength. Barely 2 years in the making and they’ve already bagged a slot at Rebellion Punk Music Festival on the Introducing Stage. This is just one of many festival dates they will be performing at all over Britain. And as long as they keep their core South Coast fan base there’s no reason why they wonít be around for a while yet. Young Adam Hall (bass) has slipped into the berth almost unnoticed; and despite his long hair, he is not out of place among these “old stagers”. This really is their time and with the South Coast Punk scene having some sort of renaissance right now, it’s up to them to take the baton left by lesser names no longer on the scene and run with it.

Track listing
Just Another Anti-War Song
Jim’s Teeth
Crashed Course
Ginger Beer
Syd Mankini
Punk Police
Mockney Cockney
Shit Town Rat
Drinking and Wanking
Friend of the Stars
Andy’s Bladder
She’s Not Quite Right
What Shall We Do with 5 Go Mad

5 Go Mad Are
Alan – VOX
Brian – LEAD
Adam – BASS
Wozza – DRUMS



Review by Ross A. Ferrone

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to MySpace