lundi 6 juin 2011

UK SUBS : Interview (1990) ENGLISH VERSION

Living legends of Punk, the UK SUBS, in 2004, are still on the road, still very active and stronger than ever ! The following short interview was made in 1990 (!), but without any doubt, fans will appreciate it ;-)

Exclusive interview with lead singer Charlie Harper, made by Hans Cany, on november the 13th, 1990

Hello Charlie ! Are the UK SUBS one of these numberous bands who formed after a SEX PISTOLS gig, in ‘77 or ‘78 ?...

No, we formed after a DAMNED gig in 1976.

Why did you choose this name of "UK SUBS", the "United Kingdom Subversives" ?...

I didn't, it was chosen for me when I had a band called THE MARAUDERS, so I told my friend Bill that the next band I have will be the SUBS.

Are your current fans the same ones as in the past ?...

Yeah, we always get old fans turning up, but we get new ones all the time too. The funny thing is they get younger and still wear green mohawks !

Charlie, you're now more than 40 years old. Do you think it changes anything ? Most of french punks here think that you lost absolutely nothing of your subversive energy. So, I just wondered : do you still feel as close to young people as you used to, back in ‘77 ??...

Thank you, french punks !
I don't think age matters at all. We're not a Pop group like NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK , you can't be 40 and be in a set up like that !... A band once played with us in the States, called THE YOUNG AND THE USELESS. I thought they were great, but nobody took them seriously as a Punk band, as they were all in their early teens. So, they became the BEASTIE BOYS, and won over the "baby food market" as well as the punks who saw the joke.

On your "Motivator" 12" from 1988, we can feel a certain change of direction to Hardcore Punk sound, as well as a slight Metal influence. How do you explain this musical evolution ?

"Motivator" just came while I was fiddling with a bass guitar, but together with "Combat Zone", they have a lot of power and that was done on purpose. The Metal edge comes from the guitar of Alan Lee, who's guitar hero is Steve Jones !

Is your track "Fascist Regime", about South Africa, a simple wink to the SEX PISTOLS or anything else ?... Why did you take "Holidays in the Sun"-inspired riffs and this Johnny Rotten-like vocals for this track ??...

"Fascist Regime" was written by Dave Goodman, the SEX PISTOLS' enginer, and the talent behind all that old stuff. But like you say, it's a PISTOLS song and not a SUBS song. That's why we don't play it live, although a few singers have made it big by copying Lydon (Johnny Rotten). I find it an embarrassment... But working with Goodman was a great experience.

...And what's your opinion about all these current rumours about a possible and imminent PISTOLS reformation ?...

What PISTOLS reformation ?!... Glen Matlock is the only one ready to play for money !...

What's your opinion about the OI! scene, with all these Punk & Skinhead bands claiming being part of the "working class" ?

OI! is the street Punk music. But if you really come "from the streets", you try to get away from that scene, it's too slick by far. The SUBS are a little sleazy, we are in the gutter, but always looking up at the stars. We are not even proud to be working class slaves to the System we hate !

Let's talk about a very special phenomenon, now : are there still many "Nazi Punks" in the UK ?...

No, they all grew up, got married, and had between 2 and 6 children !... Now all the Commies in the Eastern Block have become the new fascists.
Yes, politics has its fashions too. And manipulation of people for money and power is evil in any language...

Thanks a lot for this interview, Charlie ! To end it up, do you have anything more to add ?...

Yes : "Mad Cow Fever" is our new LP, but it's a little late coming. You should get it by the time we get over, in february. We hope we will see you on the Euro Tour. Best wishes for the new year to all your readers !

"Another Kind of Blues" 1979
"Brand New Age" 1980
"Crash Course" (Live) 1980
"Diminished Responsibility" 1981
"Endangered Species" 1982
"Flood of Lies" 1983
"Gross Out USA" (Live) 1985
"Gross Out UK" (Live) 1985
"Huntington Beach" 1986
"In Action" (Tenth anniversary, Live 1986) 1987
"Japan Today" 1987
"Killing Time" 1988
"Live in Paris" 1989
"Mad Cow Fever" 1990
"Normal Service Resumed" 1993
"Occupied" 1996
"Peel Sessions 1978-1979" 1997
"Quintessentials" 1997
"Riot" 1997
"Submission" 1999
"Time Warp" 2001
"Universal" 2002
"Violent State" Live
"Work in Progress" 2011

("Best of" compilations, demos, rarities, live, etc) :
"Live Kicks" 1979
"Dance and Travel in the Robot age" 1980
"Recorded 79-81" 1982
"Danger : Uk Subs Live" 1982
"Raw Material" 1986
"Left for Dead : Alive in Holland" 1986
"Subs Standards" 1986
"A.W.O.L." (Demos 1981-1982) 1987
"Europe Calling" (Live) 1989
"Live at the Roxy" (Live 1977) 1991
"The Singles 78-82" 1991
"Down on the Farm" 1991
"The Punk Singles Collection" 1992
"Scum of the Earth" 1993
"Punk Can Take It" (US) 1995
"Self Destruct" 1996
"Punk is Back" 1997
"Punk Rock Rarities" 1998

3/ SINGLES & EPs :
"CID" 1978
"Stranglehold" 1979
"Tomorrow's Girls" 1979
"She's not There" 1979
"Warhead" 1980
"Teenage" 1980
"Party in Paris" 1980
"Keep on running" 1981
"Countdown" 1981
"Shake up the City" 1982
"Another Typical City" 1983
"Magic EP" 1984
"This Gun says" 1985
"Live in Holland EP" 1986
"Hey Santa" 1987
"Motivator" Maxi EP 1988
"Sabre Dance" 1989
"The Road is Long , The Road is Hard" EP
"Postacard from L.A." split EP 1994
"Betrayal" 1995
"War on the Pentagon" 1996
"Day of the Dead" 1996
"Cyberjunk" 1997
"Riot EP" 1998
"The Revolution's Here" EP/MCD 2001

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