Punky Reggae Party – The Factory Live 9 June 2023
FORMED IN 2016, PUNKY REGGAE PARTY COMPRISE OF MUSICIANS WHO HAVE PLAYED WITH THE UK SUBS, CHORDS UK, CHELSEA (WITH THE CLASH ON THE GIVE EM ENOUGH ROPE TOUR IN 1978) AND BRUCE FOXTON’S SOLO BAND AFTER THE JAM.
They play the classics by The Stranglers, The Clash, Bob Marley, Stiff Little Fingers, The Ruts, Steel Pulse and The Jam among others, but try to concentrate on the Reggae inspired songs these punk bands covered or wrote themselves… think White Man in Hammersmith Palais, Bankrobber to Jah War then SLF’s Doesn’t Make it Alright. These guys clearly loved the bands they cover live and they hope this comes across in the passion and attention to detail with which they play them.
Punky Reggae Party play the songs they love and always hope we enjoy hearing as much the band loves playing and covering them.
A pretty busy Factory live welcomed the band to the stage.
The guys opened up with a lean initially towards the reggae sound and style with Jah War, by The Ruts and followed up with their namesake tune, Bob Marley’s Punky Reggae Party. Some wonderful guitar and bass work for these tunes.
The set was split in two and Punky Reggae Party gave us some 35 numbers in total. Now that’s going some! The man at the back on the drum kit kept it tight with some great patterns, fills and styles. The keyboards added a great sound, and this came to the fore with some of the classic Stranglers tunes.
As shout for The Stranglers covers including Peaches, Nice ‘n’Sleazy, Hangin Around and to close the first set an extended Walk On By. The vocals were great, the bass really sounded authentic and all topped off with a fine layer of keyboard work. What else did we get in part one? Well, you name it really but some classic highlights included a wonderful Smash It Up, by The Damned and a UKSUBS belter with Warhead.
So far a great mix of punk and reggae. Also thrown in to the wonderful mix were some Clash classics such as Armagideon Time, Police and Thieves and Guns of Brixton.
Set two opened up with a change of attire for Chris, and we had another Stranglers tune London Lady, then back to the Clash with Stay Free and The Magnificent Seven. An interesting inclusion was a cover of the Steel Pulse song Klu Klux Klan. This was delivered perfectly and delivered with a strong message. Nicely done guys.
Thanks to Chris D Scopes for modelling the set list! Check it out and I am sure you will have a favourite in there!
To bring this wonderful punky reggae party to a close we had a storming mix of tunes which I think had everyone dancing along, Rock The Casbah, Town Called Malice. The crowd reluctant to see the band leave the stage, “One More Song” went up. We got four more! Including Something Better Change, back to the Jam for Down In The Tubestation At Midnight, and a smoking cover of London Calling. Again unable to leave the stage the guys blasted us with The Undertones before they finally left a buzzing crowd.
All in all this was a great night of live music. Top musicianship on display for the 90 minute set. It was tight, loud, and great fun to be there to hear those tunes performed live. These guys are not the original bands but they will give you a shot of how these bands used to play live.
At this live performance, it was clear that punk and reggae music still resonates with fans of all ages. The crowd was a mix of young and old, all united by their love of a Punky Rocky Reggae party! And they got one! They ticked all the boxes for me and the crowd. Great fun to be there, and well done to The Factory for putting them on. Hope they come back soon!
A Video – a wee taster – 3 songs in the mix!
The Factory LIVE!
It was warm in there but the super air con at the Factory kept everyone nice n cool. It also helped to dissipate the smoke from the smoke machine! We were treated, as always, to a top notch lighting display. The sound mix was spot on notch, vocals were clear and a great mix on the instruments meant everything was heard. Full marks again to The Factory Live! Chris and the band loved the venue, the sound and the staff. I have to agree. A great venue!
Thanks to Punky Reggae Party and the team at The Factory Live.
Punky Reggae Party – have a Facebook page here!
Words and photos by Ian Bourn.
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All original pictures / video – copyright to IANB/MEDIA WORKS/ SCENE SUSSEX – Ian “The Lens” Bourn 2023.
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