The Rezillos are on a large tour around the UK presently. The tour is to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the sublime album “Cant stand The Rezillos”. The Rezillos are a punk/new wave band formed in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1976. Although emerging at the same time as other bands in the punk rock movement, the Rezillos did not share the nihilism or social commentary of their contemporaries, but instead took a more light-hearted approach to their songs, preferring to describe themselves at the time as “a New Wave beat group”.
Atomic batteries to power, transmatt location and frequency set. It was Destination Venus at 229 The Venue, London, Star Date – 15.09.2018. Scene Sussex and The Lens headed out of Sussex for a trip up to London. It was time for action and all systems go! The Rezillos were in town!
This was set to be a terrific gig for the gig calender due to the line up – Department S were the guests on the night. What a line up, and a genius marriage of two great bands for the night – well done to AGMP!
I love sitting in on soundchecks. The pre gig atmosphere and then sounds created for The Rezillos was built up and created by Shona on the mixing deck. A couple of checks, followed by a couple of songs and then Eugene produced his sax. Fay wanted a run through of Mutilation. Everything was checked, we got the thumbs up from Eugene. We were set. Sun glasses polished, amps set to 11…. anything could happen….
Eugene Reynolds – vox, guitars, sax
Fay Fife – vox, theremin, keys
Angel Paterson – drums
Chris Agnew – bass
Jim Brady – guitars, vox and generally jumping about!
The 229 was packed that night and as the lights dimmed the crowd moved forward. Anticipation and excitement heavy in the air. A fanfare bit of music, bit spacey, bit funky and tense opener played and the band took to the stage, “Are ye alright?” asked Jim.
The Rezillos are well known for their bass lines from that first album “Cant Stand The Rezillos” and newest album “ZERO”. Chris hits that perfect Rezillos sweet spot with bass fills and bass thunder. Tonight with his wrap around shades he looked the business as he opened up proceeding with the bass line for Flying Saucer Attack. Jim Brady on guitars, glasses and goggles sparked into action. His unique sound is complimented with a style of gymnastics as he joined in with Chris. The man at the back, Angel, was now in full percussion mode. He was giving us the drum attack and is another original member of the band. He sat behind his customised kit, his usual sunglasses reflecting the light. Guitar screeching, Eugene and Fay bounced onto the stage to another huge cheer. Fay grabbed her mic and blast off! The Rezillos had landed. Ignition had happened and the fuse to the Rocket Rezillos had reached the main engines and propelled us towards planet Rezillos!
We had been promised the Cant Stand The Rezillos album in full and so the set list followed the album track listing. Eugene took hold of his flexi mic stand and delivered a belting rendition of No. Two songs in and you could just feel the excitement from the band and also from the music. The crowd reacted with each shout of “No”. Usually saved for the end of a show, next up was Somebody’s Gonna Get their Head Kicked In Tonight. That did it! Anyone hanging out at the back or just watching got pulled in with this one. I can say the 229 went nuts!
Top Of The Pops!
The crowd had totally lost it by now and this seemed to kick The Rezillos up into yet another higher gear! If indeed that is possible. Top Of The Pops came at us loud and proud – an absolute classic of a track, and again everyone knew the words. Just brilliant! These guys were on fire tonight. Jim didnt stand still for a second, Fay was bouncing around the stage, hair flicking, fist waving, head banging and then she would stop and she had a huge smile on her face.
2000 AD was up next, again a chance for Eugene to rock it out with the vocals, the look and his raised hair. He would stop and peer out into the crowd – we were still there Eugene, and lovin it! It Gets me was next back to Fay – but this is a complex song and Chris nailed his bass perfectly working with Angel to provide a solid backing to the guitar that Jim was thrashing the life out of. Then it was I Cant Stand My Baby. This was the song I fell in love with back in the day which led me to meeting the guys for the first time whilst I was on The Ramones roadcrew. It is a genuine love that for me has lasted, well, just over 40 years! It was given a refresh tonight but it really is a punk classic and again a nod to Chris for the bass lines!
I am not going to list all the tracks – go grab the album if you are one of the couple of hundred folk who don’t own it! Huge shout to Jim for his guitar break during Good Sculptures. Sensational stuff, Jim playing guitar, producing sound effects and having to wrestle with a certain Mr Spizz Energi to get his ray gun back! The band really work hard for this song. They pulled off an astonishing rendition tonight! The rest of the album was delivered at breakneck speeds. Perfection!
The album completed it was time to move on, no break in speed or tempo. Some fabulous in group banter filling in between the songs. We had Groovy Room, Sorry About Tomorrow and Zero in almost a medley from the Zero album. Back to The Rezillos vaults, Eugene grabbed his sax for Do The Mutilation (The Revillos) and great to hear it live, Mystery Action and finishing up with Destination Venus.
The band left the stage for a few minutes and came back, Eugene back on the Sax and Fay working her theremin for the awesome 20000 Rezillos under the sea. Jim again pulling off some stunning guitar fret play. Always a showstopper! Fay was then back in control with her face melting rendition of River Deep, Mountain High. The band had been playing for well over an hour and Fay pulled out some searing vocals for this. Great job Fay and nice to see this back in the set as you really have made this your song. And that was it! The crowd took the chance in the quiet space to show their appreciation with a huge and lengthy bout of applause and cheers.
The Rezillos had created the Perfect Musical Storm and pulled it off with gusto and aplomb. They delivered their set with passion, intensity and a sense of just damn good fun. Congratulations to The Rezillos, keep it goin!
The band has always had a strong relationship with their fans and its great to see that they continue to make time to come out to meet them and sign CD’s and vinyl. As a result, they have a very loyal, and in some cases long standing fan base.
Just a short selection of clips!
Well done The Rezillos! Also to AGMP for putting on such a great show, with Department S.
They also have a well managed Facebook page, Twitter (make sure you visit the official Twitter) and website.
Promoter: Massive thanks to the fabulous outfit AGMP who put on this night – they are on the WWW here!
Please note all images are copyright, please do not copy. If any of the featured artists would like copies of the images – or more if available – please get in touch.
All pictures – copyright to IANB/MEDIA WORKS/ Scene Sussex/ Ian “The Lens” Bourn 2018.