Author Topic: Punk documentary on Sky Arts  (Read 2007 times)

Jockice

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Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« on: August 03, 2019, 07:20:20 AM »
Anyone watching this? Part three of four was on last night. It's good. Apparently it was originally shown on Epix, but I don't know what Epix is.

the science eel

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2019, 08:37:40 PM »
Normally this is just the kind of thing I get excited about, but....I dunno. I've seen the first two, but it's such familiar territory. Maybe the next two might hold more interest.


Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2019, 08:54:40 PM »
Everyone at the free trade hall formed a band and prog died overnight

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2019, 10:35:53 PM »
It's funny how many punks turned out to have been prog fans, well Viv Albertine, Captain Sensible and John Lydon anyway. I'm sure there were others, can't remember which. Danny Baker wrote for Sniffin Glue and kept his prog predilections quiet, then switched his attention to disco.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2019, 01:53:00 AM »
Baker was always open about his love of prog, soul and disco, it's just that he also happened to like the energy of punk. I don't think he ever really cared for much of the actual music, though, his only real faves being The Clash, the Pistols, Ramones, Buzzcocks, Blondie and, from the post-punk era, The Fall (he gave them their first glowing review in the NME, if I'm not mistaken).

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2019, 02:02:57 AM »
Viv Albertine

She's seemingly rent-a-talking head on punk documentaries.
Probably because she can speak in sentences and looks about 35.

a duncandisorderly

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2019, 02:06:17 AM »
It's funny how many punks turned out to have been prog fans, well Viv Albertine, Captain Sensible and John Lydon anyway.

this (pic), of course, was much later, when they were neighbours.... lydon would presumably have been stretching the traditional journalistic shorthand of 'prog' to include hawkwind, who it is said he roadied for occasionally, beefheart, vdgg & can.

I honestly can't imagine him listening to ELP or genesis for more than a few minutes, & his feeling for pink floyd is the stuff of legend.


Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2019, 02:55:29 AM »
Didn't he come out with "you can only stay angry at Pink Floyd for so long"? they are obviously rather outside of your narrower ELP, Yes, etc kind of prog definition though.

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2019, 04:37:32 AM »
Baker was always open about his love of prog, soul and disco, it's just that he also happened to like the energy of punk. I don't think he ever really cared for much of the actual music, though, his only real faves being The Clash, the Pistols, Ramones, Buzzcocks, Blondie and, from the post-punk era, The Fall (he gave them their first glowing review in the NME, if I'm not mistaken).

Really? I read Sniffin Glue (well a couple of years after the fact) and the NME in the late '70s and never had an inkling of any affection for ELP, Yes, Tull and all those people. He would surely have been cast into the outer darkness if he had championed any of them.

By '78 he was saying the only rock band he would cross the road for was The Clash, but most of his enthusiasm was going into Earth Wind and Fire, Sylvester, McFadden & Whitehead & c. which was acceptable because it was populist. Then when he left the NME he felt free not to censor himself over his love of pomp. 'Pomp rock' was the better phrase for it in my opinion, summed up everything all us cool kids hated about it.

This is the story I tell myself, but I was only a boy and am happy to have it demolished with some facts.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2019, 05:04:50 AM »
Not at all, you're better equipped than me to comment on Baker's pronouncements at the time. I bet, as you say, he didn't let on that he loved ELP when he was pithily reviewing the latest single by The Lurkers or whoever.

Jockice

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2019, 12:40:15 PM »
Normally this is just the kind of thing I get excited about, but....I dunno. I've seen the first two, but it's such familiar territory. Maybe the next two might hold more interest.

I really enjoyed the third one, looking at the early 80s American scene with the likes of Rollins and Biafra. One thing that puzzled me though was the absence of even a mention (as far as I can recall) of Flipper. They were my favourites from that lot.

bigfatheart

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2019, 03:52:03 PM »
Only on CaB could a thread about an American punk documentary almost immediately become a thread about the extent to which Danny Baker liked prog!

Turned over to this last night. It was pretty good, but as has been said, a lot of these documentaries do end up going over similar ground. I don't even think it's that there's not much more to say - pretty much every documentary on hardcore ticks the boxes of 'Bad Brains started it, Black Flag paved the way, clips from Decline of Western Civilisation, brief detour into Dischord and NYHC, it all went downhill when the jocks* got involved', but there's lots of interesting stuff and bands and scenes beyond that. As Jockice says, there's Flipper. I'd also throw the likes of Poison Idea, Void, queercore bands in Texas like the Dicks, the various offshoot scenes like the skate punk bands, the crossover thrash bands, and that's before you scratch the surface of groups like Husker Du that evolved out of and in a way replaced hardcore, or for that matter, bands outside the USA. Maybe I'm asking too much from what seems to be a bit of an 'overview' type of documentary, but when there's been so many overviews maybe it's time to start digging beneath the surface a bit**?

*Jocks as in aggressive macho types, not our Jockice.
**Although obviously the problem there is that it wouldn't be commissioned by whoever Epix are and shown on Sky Arts. Bah.

the science eel

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2019, 04:12:57 PM »
I really enjoyed the third one, looking at the early 80s American scene with the likes of Rollins and Biafra. One thing that puzzled me though was the absence of even a mention (as far as I can recall) of Flipper. They were my favourites from that lot.

Yes, and yes.

Some of that stuff really only exists outside of its own time and place tho', don't you think? I mean, I hate to sound like an old fart, but super-fast three-note riffs with someone shouting a two-word slogan? not any kind of music, as far as I'm concerned. Most Black Flag stuff they played just sounded shit. And that DKs thing - can't remember the title - really really bad.

But yeah. 'Ha Ha Ha' is a cracker. And I like Rollins.

the science eel

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2019, 04:14:26 PM »
and that Iggy doc that followed (last night). Interesting stuff. Not sure about Homme tho'. He whipped that band into shape, for sure. The first time Ig had played 'Success' and 'China Girl' live!

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2019, 04:26:16 PM »
this (pic), of course, was much later, when they were neighbours.... lydon would presumably have been stretching the traditional journalistic shorthand of 'prog' to include hawkwind, who it is said he roadied for occasionally, beefheart, vdgg & can.

I honestly can't imagine him listening to ELP or genesis for more than a few minutes, & his feeling for pink floyd is the stuff of legend.


Yes, he likes them, https://www.theguardian.com/music/2010/feb/18/john-lydon-pink-floyd


As for his cover of Lucifer Sam on the last PIL album, oh dear.

I don't know why he changed the lyrics something about Betty Page or something.

wosl

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #15 on: August 04, 2019, 04:28:00 PM »
And I like Rollins.

I like him a lot as well, while at the same time having almost no feeling for or interest in his output as an artist, in any medium.  He's usually a good bet for a very engaging interview, if he's given the time to stretch out, and he's good at interviewing others, too.

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #16 on: August 04, 2019, 04:30:07 PM »
Baker recently tweeted that NMTB was a terrible album apart from the singles. I agreed with him.

the science eel

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #17 on: August 04, 2019, 04:40:51 PM »
and 'No Feelings' and 'EMI'

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #18 on: August 04, 2019, 04:43:21 PM »
He was more of a 'All Skrewed Up' fan wasn't he?

:trollin':

Glebe

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #19 on: August 04, 2019, 04:50:43 PM »
There was one on recently about Agnostic Front, and The Damned as well. Also caught some of Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten on Film4 the other week. BBC4 is good for this sort of thing too, of course.

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #20 on: August 04, 2019, 05:12:36 PM »
and 'No Feelings' and 'EMI'

Best track on the album

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #21 on: August 04, 2019, 05:54:53 PM »
And "Sub-Mission." And fucking "Bodies." Nah, rubbish. There's definitely weaker tracks on NMTB, but the killers outnumber the filler.

the science eel

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #22 on: August 04, 2019, 07:18:12 PM »
Absolutely.

Only the Clash's debut beats it.

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #23 on: August 04, 2019, 11:50:16 PM »
And "Sub-Mission." And fucking "Bodies." Nah, rubbish. There's definitely weaker tracks on NMTB, but the killers outnumber the filler.

I relistened to it properly last week and I was really struck by how reliant it is on Lydon’s delivery for impact. Most of the music is basically amped up ‘rock n roll’ and to my ears sounds remarkably stodgy now. I grew up with this as a sacred text so I was very biased towards it in terms of sentiment but musically it now sounds a bit dull. I found it telling that there was almost exactly one year between Bollocks and Public Image and the latter still sounds remarkably fresh and vibrant.

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #24 on: August 05, 2019, 03:26:33 PM »
Only on CaB could a thread about an American punk documentary almost immediately become a thread about the extent to which Danny Baker liked prog!

The interesting aspect of the Baker thing is how many rules were laid down by UK punk - even though many were inconsistently applied or contradictory  - possibly more than any other musical movement there's been. Baker had to keep silent because he would have been discredited otherwise. 

Don't say album say LP.

Don't put singles on LPs, or at least not more than one.

Cut your hair.

Lyric sheets are pretentious.

Always remain standing at concerts.

Songs must be approx three minutes at most.

Gatefold sleeves are pretentious.

Hippy vocabulary is verboten - except 'hip' which is to be used in an ironic way. Of course anything hippy is disdained.

Technical competence is not a quality to be praised or encouraged.

Acceptable drugs are dope and sometimes speed. Not cocaine.

etc. etc.

I think US punk was less like like that, a blessing and a curse probably. IIRC Jello Biafra was a sort of hippie anti-hippie.

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #25 on: August 05, 2019, 07:01:10 PM »
I always felt like the later American punk scene was like some weird cargo cult version where they got it all wrong because they used the UK Subs as their template.

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #26 on: August 05, 2019, 07:28:19 PM »
I'll never forgive them for what they did to ska either.

I'd like to watch this programme, if I can be bothered to take out the 30 day free trial Epix are offering and remember to cancel in time like I usually don't.

Ballad of Ballard Berkley

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #27 on: August 05, 2019, 08:41:54 PM »
The interesting aspect of the Baker thing is how many rules were laid down by UK punk - even though many were inconsistently applied or contradictory  - possibly more than any other musical movement there's been. Baker had to keep silent because he would have been discredited otherwise.

And, via Sniffin' Glue, wasn't Baker partially responsible for laying down some of those rules? He certainly didn't comply with the short hair diktat, as he still looked like a young David Essex during the high summer of punk.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HdtKynT_d60

Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #28 on: August 06, 2019, 03:57:05 AM »
And, via Sniffin' Glue, wasn't Baker partially responsible for laying down some of those rules? He certainly didn't comply with the short hair diktat, as he still looked like a young David Essex during the high summer of punk.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HdtKynT_d60

Yes, that's a kind of don't-give-a-shit-about-haircuts haircut. Mick Jones was like that as well some of the time. That interview gives a great feeling of the totally pissed-off side of the thing that was behind all those kinds of rules - to strip everything down to basics again and shear off all the hollow pretensions, so things could start again from scratch.

I've never heard Baker try to square that with a lot of the kind of music he actually liked, including the stadium rock etc. Mark Perry was great, even though most of his musical adventurism didn't actually work out after the first records. He really didn't give a shit what people thought of him, including the punks and the music press.

It's a wonderful thought to imagine Baker giving an interview like that and then going home to listen to Tales of the Topographic Oceans.

Jockice

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Re: Punk documentary on Sky Arts
« Reply #29 on: August 06, 2019, 08:40:48 AM »

*Jocks as in aggressive macho types, not our Jockice.


I'm all man me, I'll have you know.

Incidentally Jello Biafra once filled in a questionnaire in Flexipop at which he mentioned Flipper as his favourite band. Unfortunately they misprinted it as Slipper.

I do like Danny Baker but as he briefly mentioned in that video he was one of those rare kids who everybody liked at school. Which must have done something for his confidence. The only other famous person I've ever heard say that is Dave Grohl. Certainly makes a change from famous people claiming they were badly bullied and a total outcast because someone once insulted them in the corridor.