The legendary 12 Bar in Soho’s Denmark Street (soon to be demolished in the name of progress) played host to a celebration of two years of Street Sounds, the magazine with the scourge of the music press cognoscenti, Garry Bushell, at the helm. Champion of the much misunderstood ‘Oi’ movement and the man who prophesised that “In the future all music will be light entertainment” was also one of the first to write extensively about popular culture in the national press and to foresee its dominance over the nation for better and worse. (Visionary polymath Bushell is also starring as an abusive alpha-male in the forthcoming ‘Brit-grit-flick’ A Fool’s Circle written, produced and starring Suzanne Seddon, who was also in attendance.)
Manchester band The Backhanders, with their mod cuts and scally attire supplied the live entertainment. Their Joe Strummer-inspired song ‘Campfire’ is a great, rocking number, reminiscent of a ‘2-4-6-8’ by The Tom Robinson Band. They also played a cover of The Doors’ ‘People Are Strange’, which started out all classic 60s psyche until the vocals went all Manc-standard Gallagher/Meighan, too whiney and all-shouty. C’mon lads, progress not no-gress. (Fun fact: the band are managed by renowned gate-crasher and subject of the eponymous Black Grape song, ‘Fatneck’.)
In keeping with the London feel, free pie and mash was laid on courtesy of the London Pie and Mash Company. Finger liquorin’ tasty and coming soon to a town near you. The crowd was a heady mix of ages, from aesthetes to try-hards and what surely has to be Keith Lemon’s template: bewildering, and in many ways in keeping with Bushell’s nightmarish premonitions.