Posts Tagged ‘Baby Harp Seal’

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).

Brob

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!…

95-07-14 Manfat

Anthony Palmer (editor of the zines Dingo Baby, Duhhh,…) wrote me in June ’95: “The ‘Manfat’ Euro tour fell through. ‘Kito’ wanna tour with ‘Baby Harp Seal’ instead.” But they played at the V.V. anyway… Michael J. Gilliam explains below…

Steve Buxton (Ripping Thrash zine) did a ‘Decadence Within’ / ‘Manfat’ split-tape (benefit for hunt-sabs in 1995. It contained the 5 tracks of their Live Like A Dog demo and 2 of their 7”. The line-up of ‘Manfat’ (from Middlesbrough) here was: Bri(an) Puplett (vocals; ex ‘Catharsis’, ‘Embittered’ and later ‘John Holmes’), Dale Tomlinson (guitar; ex ‘Catharsis’, later ‘John Holmes’), Michael Gillham (drums; played in a wide range of bands) and ‘Dr Bennett’ (bass). On the self-titled 7” (sometimes referred to as Endless Daze) on A-Wat recs (1994) there was a drum-machine and Matt(hew) Burke played the bass. They had also recorded for another demo (Pigfood) in the spring of this year. Their music was described as “pissed-off, dark, malevolent and very thick sounding hardcore”.

Matt Woodward (drummer of ‘Kito’) has photos of the ‘Kito’ (with Stu Smith) & ‘Baby Harp Seal’ (with Andrew Raine) & ‘Manfat’ tour in 1995. Here’s one from Vienna…

95-07 Manfat (Trav, Michael Gillham, Dale Tomlinson & Ian Roberts) ViennaTrav – Michael Gillham – Dale Tomlinson – Ian ‘Bennett’ Roberts

You can read about the reason why only ‘Manfat’ made it to the V.V. below…

Brob

‘Manfat’ toured Europe twice, once with ‘Kito’ & ‘Baby Harp Seal’ and another time (maybe 1996) with ‘Hard To Swallow’ [26 oct ’96 (‘La Zone, Liège’): Virtual Reality (UK), Drop Dead (USA), Manfat (UK)]. I wasn’t in ‘Manfat’ however and wasn’t on those tours.

Anthony Palmer, ‘Embittered’ vocalist

‘Manfat’ toured one time with a band called ‘Rated R’, and one time with ‘Hard To Swallow’… By then I was in Berlin, so don’t know if ‘Baby Harp Seal’ actually played; one tour I only joined them when they got to Germany…

Tom Chapman, ex ‘Baby Harp Seal’ guitarist

I only played in the second version of ‘Baby Harp Seal’, replacing Tom when he moved to Berlin so I played on that tour in ’95. I think they played the V.V. before I joined [94-07-10] but I’m certain we didn’t play at the Vort’n Vis. The tour was us, ‘Kito’ and ‘Manfat’ though… Puzzling… I know I’ve never been to the V.V. because it was considered THE place to play at the time and I was always a bit gutted that I never made it there…

Andrew Raine, ‘B.H.S.’

I’ve been in ‘Manfat’ but only played the Vort’n Vis with ‘Kito’ [94-07-10], I think…

Matt Burke

I don’t really care for ‘Voorhees’ anymore. I care for ‘Manfat’ more than ever. The reason why you never heard about a ‘Manfat’ gig at the V.V. before is because we just turned up and played. The guy at the bar (Peter [Vanthuyne]) was very helpful, actually he was fucking amazing…

Michael John Gillham, ‘Manfat’ drummer; personal communication January ‘96

The gig with ‘Manfat’ was unannounced. We needed somewhere to go for a day and just turned up and played and stopped there one night also. Which was great! ‘Kito’ and ‘Baby Harp Seal’ had already been in Europe for about a week and we met them in Münster, Germany. I’m not sure they played the Vort’n Vis that year themselves, in fact I don’t think they did.

The line-up of ‘Manfat’ at the time was indeed: Bri (vocals), Dale (guitar), Ian a.k.a. ‘Bennett’ (bass; ‘Bennett’ was a sort of joke nick-name because of a funny misunderstanding about something, his real surname is Roberts!) and Michael (drums).

The previous year ‘Kito’ and ‘Baby Harp Seal’ had toured Europe for the first time together and they planned on doing the same again that year (1995), so a tour was arranged for 3 weeks; but for some reason ‘Baby Harp Seal’ could only do the first half, so ‘Kito’ asked us, ‘Manfat’, to do the second half. There were 3 dates (Münster, Mannheim, Homburg) where it over-lapped and there was all 3 bands.

I don’t know where the tour had took ‘Kito’ and ‘B.H.S.’ before we joined them but I think it had mainly been dates in Belgium and Germany. the dates ‘Manfat’ did that I can remember are as follows. A couple of gigs got cancelled too and so we had to stop more than one night at a couple of places (Mannheim and, I think, Bratislava)… Ieper (‘Manfat’ only), Münster (the 3 bands [were planned but didn’t all play]), Mannheim (the 3 bands), Homburg (the 3 bands plus UK garage-punk band ‘Spectreman’ feat. members of ‘Headbutt’), Vienna (‘Manfat’ & ‘Kito’), Bratislava (‘Manfat’ & ‘Kito’) & Prague (‘Manfat’ & ‘Kito’). The picture was taken by Matt outside the bar we played of a massive outdoor arena venue; in fact the venue was called Arena. I certainly do remember the killer drive back from Prague: everyone started loosing their minds! Haha. No-one hardly had any money left so no-one was eating; all we had was lots of rolling tobacco!

In the months before we were due to go, Bri decided instead of going on tour with us, he’d rather go America to travel around on tour with ‘Dystopia’, which of course was up to him, but we were quite disappointed and it left us in the bad position of “Do we still do the tour, and if so, how?”. Of course we still wanted to do the tour so we had the following options – do it as an instrumental 3 piece or find a replacement for Bri, but we couldn’t find anyone suitable and it didn’t seem like a good idea to do it instrumentally. But as we knew another drummer (Trav) who could do it, we decided that he would take my place and I would sing; so that’s what we did. We rehearsed intensively in the weeks before but the change affected the overall sound/performance because I’m not a very good front-man and the drummer wasn’t a punk drummer, but we did our best with it, and had a great time on tour, so…

Michael, the driver, is Michael Baines (from local Middlesbrough band ‘Spit The Pips’). At the time he also worked at Studio 64 recording-studio and recorded some records on Flat Earth (‘One By One’, ‘Sedition’, etc) and Meantime (‘Sofa Head’, etc). Trav who stood-in on drums was the drummer in Michael’s band, as Michael was driving us on the tour, that’s how we got Trav to drum for us. [Guestbook: ‘Tomato Crab’ drum stand-in, ‘Bennett’ (bass), Michael (full time drummer, part-time singer), Dale T. (guitar), Michael (driver)]

We went to the Vort’n Vis because we had a spare day as a gig had been cancelled or something, so when we got off the ferry in Belgium everyone was saying “Well where shall we go?!” and I said the best option (and probably our only option really) was to go to the V.V. and ask to stay there and if possible play there, so we did!

Michael John Gillham, ‘Manfat’ drummer

Peter Vanthuyne at the V.V. was great. Even though we just turned up, he kept apologizing saying he couldn’t pay us and giving us a beer whenever we ran out. I seem to remember we all went to the outdoor swimming-baths as well.

All three bands did not play in Münster. We met there but there was a clash with (I think) a ‘Madball’ gig and so not enough cash to pay everyone. Of course they bumped us (who had travelled miles out of our way and missed a Eugene Chadbourne gig to get there) and I think ‘B.H.S.’ from the bill and let the local bands play instead. Less than impressed. I remember Rob (‘B.H.S.’) told the promoter in Mannheim he was looking forward to his holiday. The guy took it literally and thought we didn’t want paying and so spent all our money on a PA instead.

I don’t remember my feet stinking that badly…

Ian Roberts, ‘Manfat’ bassist

excerpt from the V.V. guestbook:

VV 95-07-14 - (book B) Manfat

additions wellcome!…