94-07-10 Chorus Of Disapproval – Ironside – Baby Harp Seal – Kito – Who Moved the Ground

Posted: April 17, 2015 in VV 1994
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94-07-10 Chorus Of Disapproval - Ironside - Kito

‘Kito’ and ‘Baby Harp Seal’ toured together; in Belgium they also played in Tongeren (94-07-12 @ Concordia’; with ‘Down By Law’ (& Dave Smalley), ‘Kosjer D’ and ‘Who Moved The Ground’) and in Leuven. They toured in 1995 and ’97 aswell (see 95-07-14).

‘Kito’ (from Middlesbrough) played, as Ian Glasper put it, “gnarly hardcore punk-rock in the vein of ‘Rorschach’…” others described it as anarcho-punk meets sludgecore. There was a definite metal influence. Originals were Rob(ert) Hallowes (vocals), Matt Burke (guitar) and the omnipresent Tom Chapman. The latter played bass for them but when he relocated to Lille by the end of summer 1992, he was replaced by Chris Coulthard. He switched to guitar when Chris Campbell-Lee joined to play bass. Chris Coulthard left in ’93 and was replaced by Stu(art) Smith. Fom Ian Gasper’s book: “1994 saw the band heading out to Europe for the first time with ‘Baby Harp Seal’ before unleashing their debut EP, Johnson, Mary: 188897764. Tom would re-join in March 1995 (read 95-07-14) when Matt Burke had left. So playing here were Rob ‘Kito’, Matt Burke, Chris Campbell & Stu Smith; Matt(hew) Woodward (also ‘Sofa Head’; see 93-03-28) was the drummer (and the photographer)… Besides the aforementioned 7” (out in ’94 on Richard Corbridge’s Armed With Anger recs), they also did a split-7” with ‘Konstrukt’ from Austria (Hammerwerk, ’95) and later (‘98) Sned released an LP on his label Flat Earth recs.

94-07-10 Kito (Stu Smith & Matt Woodward) by Ian Congdon‘Kito’, photographed by Ian Congdon

‘Baby Harp Seal’ (Leeds) played emo “in the vein of ‘Fugazi’/‘Hoover’/‘Heroin’…”. They were: Neil Turpin (drums; also ‘Polaris’), Rob(ert) Holden (guitar/vocals; also ‘Manfat’) and Seth Bennett (bass). Tom Chapman (guitar) left the band when he was moving to Berlin – where he did Now Or Never zine – and was replaced by Andrew Raine in 1995. They did a split-7” with ‘Polaris’ (Kwyjibo ’94), a self-titled 7” (sometimes referred to as Devour; on Helene Keller’s Subjugation recs in‘94) and another self-titled 7” (Chainsaw Safety recs from NY, ’95). In March ’95 they recorded tracks for a split-7” with ‘Kosjer D’ (co-release of Genet recs & Jason Kilvington a.k.a. Jase Kilvo’s label Caught Offside recs) and the LP on Subjugation was recorded in early 1996. Jason also joined them on this tour…

94-07-10 Chorus Of Disapproval & Ironside tour‘Chorus Of Disapproval’ & ‘Ironside’ on tour (source unknown)

Vegan sXe metalcore or hardline? ‘Ironside’ (from Bradford) were here for the 2nd time (after 92-09-05). This must’ve been around the time their Damn Your Blooded Eyes 7” (recorded April ‘94) was out on Stormstrike. Still in the band were Rich(ard) Michael Armitage and Doug(las) Dalziel (bass). The rest (Nick Royles formed ‘Cracked Cop Skulls’ with ‘Ripcord’s Jim Whitely) had left to be replaced by Shaun (Taylor-)Steels (drums; later in ‘My Dying Bride’, ‘Solstice’ & ‘Anathema’) and guitarists James Rushby (later ‘Geriatric Unit’, ‘Hard To Swallow’, etc.) & Clive Hughes. Armitage wrote about their tour with ‘Chorus of Disapproval’: “The biggest mismatch ever – us listening to ‘[Black] Sabbath’ on the booze, them not.”.

94-10-07 Chorus of Disapproval (by Sid Stovold)‘Ironside’ (L: Hans Verbeke); courtesy of Sid Stovold

I once read someone calling ‘Chorus Of Disapproval’ awesome “two-brain-cell” XXX-mosh… Singer Isaac had a huge ‘X’-tattoo on the calf… They travelled through Europe with ‘Ironside’; a tour organised by Steffen Rose (Navigator). You guessed that they were a straight-edge hardcore band (from Long Beach, California): Isaac Golub (vocals), Jeff Banks (guitar; also briefly in ‘Half Off’), RD Walker Davies (drums, replacing original drummer Jerome ‘Jerry’ P. Hohman) and Regis Guerin (bass). That year New Age recs put out their discography under the title Firm Standing Law.

‘Who Moved the Ground?’ (from Farnborough) were: Richard (guitar & lead-vocals), Sid Stovold (guitar & vocals), Chris Redmond (drums & vocals) and Les Green (bass). Sounded/felt a bit like an indie band to me. They’d sent me some promo-stuff but I wasn‘t really keen or able to help out. Don’t know how they ended up at the V.V. anyway… In their own words they were influenced by ‘Mega City Four’, ‘Bad Religion’, ‘New Model Army’ and ‘The Housemartins’. They had 2 7”s out on Icarus recs by that time: Barneydancing (’93) & The Chase / What’s That? (’94).


94-07-10 Who Moved The Ground (promo)

I guess we met a couple of times over the years, Brob – I used to be in several UK bands (‘Ironside’, ‘Kito’, ‘Baby Harp Seal’), then in bands when I lived in Germany (‘Miozan’, ‘Battle Royale’, ‘Cold War’). Now I’m back in the UK playing in a punk band ‘Geoffrey Oi!Cott’. I spent a year living in Lille (France) so I used to go a lot to Ieper, Roeselare, Kortrijk, etc. to hang out and for gigs… I even had a couple of issues of your fanzine Tilt!… ‘B.H.S.’ would have been Neil, Seth, Rob & Andy Raine at that time. Neil left and was replaced by Chris and that was the last line-up. Mark Simms was in ‘Bob Tilton’ but not in ‘B.H.S.’. He might have been a guest or fill in here and there but not a member. He recorded us though…

Tom Chapman

All I remember from that show was that nobody showed up! We played Dunkerque first so the V.V. was the second show on that tour…

Matt Woodward, ‘Kito’ drummer

I was in ‘Manfat’ but only played the Vort’n Vis with ‘Kito’; this one here…

Matt Burke

Indeed, I wasn’t in that ‘Kito’ line-up.

Chris Coulthard

I remember it being really hot. ‘Chorus Of Disapproval’ were all either very tall or very wide. Rob from ‘B.H.S.’ had made shirts out of old pyjama tops for sale.

Jase Kilvo

I only played in the second version of the band, I think they did play this one before I joined.

Andrew Raine, ‘Baby Harp Seal’

I was at that show. Memory sketchy. I drove ‘Kito’ and ‘B.H.S.’ around Europe that summer.

Ian Congdon

I wasn’t there. That’s when ‘Ironside’ went sludge doom.

Nick Royles

I agree wholeheartedly with Rich from ‘Ironside’: it was the biggest mismatch ever. My memory of the Belgium show is not a good one, not because of the venue but because at that point in the tour there was a lot of infighting and we weren’t getting along. I was drinking and getting high and they obviously didn’t. I don’t really remember the show.

RD Walker Davies, ‘Chorus Of Disapproval’ drummer

My band ‘Who Moved The Ground?’ played at the Vort’n Vis. We were a young ska/punk band in the middle of a 6 week European tour that took us to Poland, France, Belgium and Germany. Not sure how we got the gig, we did everything ourselves. I think it may have been me that made contact with someone called Joeri [Hoste?], who had something to do with organising things. He even let us sleep in a tent in his garden after the show.

Being a ska/punk band we were considerably ‘lighter’ than the other bands on the bill. We made friends with ‘Baby Harp Sea’ and ‘Kito’ though, I even ended up with one of their vinyl 7”s (I’m a huge vinyl-collector) in my luggage when we arrived back from the tour. Anyway, the venue was amazing, everyone was really nice and friendly, food and drink supplied to all the bands as they seemed to know how hard it was for touring bands. We played football outside and 4 of our friends came over to see us from England. Our singer even had to dash off after our soundcheck to pick them up from the port. The gig itself flew by, being on nice and early the venue wasn’t over-crowded but that didn’t put us off, although I think the crowd wanted something a lot heavier. We played our hearts out (as we always did), hung around to watch the other bands, made friends and generally had an excellent time. Great place, really great memories.

Sid Stovold, ‘Who Moved The Ground?’ guitarist

94-07-10 Who Moved The Ground‘Who Moved The Ground?’, pic courtesy of Sid Stovold

excerpts from the V.V. guestbook:

VV 94-07-10 - (book B) Chorus Of Disapproval Qartist’s impression of the Vort’n Vis?

VV 94-07-10 - (book B) Chorus Of DisapprovalVV 94-07-10 - (book B) Chorus Of Disapproval Isaac GolubVV 94-07-10 - (book B) Chorus Of Disapproval Regis

There was a whole anti-women rant in the guestbook aswell (‘C.O.D’? / Brad Hamilton?); I’m leaving that out…obviously.

VV 94-07-10 - (book B) IronsideVV 94-07-10 - (book B) Ironside Shaun - Pete Rose

VV 94-07-10 - (book B) TommyWho was Tommy?

additions wellcome!…

  1. Hans Verbeke says:

    I remember some fuss happening at that show because one of the ‘Chorus’ members calling my girlfriend a bitch (after they got served a vegan pasta and wanted meat).

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