Thursday, 7 November 2019

Top Tens: Ten Bands Colin Would Love To See Reform

Last week the alternative music world was awash with My Chemical Romance and Rage Against The Machine announcing that they will be reuniting in the future. That got me thinking about bands I'd like to see get back together, whether it be properly or just for some special one off shows. This, of course, calls for a top ten list. Read on below.

I think it's fair to say that Cornish three-piece Bangers were a very important part in the renaissance of DIY punk rock in the UK. It came with a great shock and a lot of sadness when they split up in 2016. They were known for playing melodic pop punk music with one of the most distinctive vocals in the scene thanks to Roo Pescod. Never afraid to try something different, Bangers would be welcomed back with open arms if they did decide to ever get back together. Fingers crossed they do!

Fletcher frontman Lee recently put out some re-recordings of some Fletcher songs under the name of his new band Lee Resistant And The Lost so, in a way, the former London based four piece are back. However, I'd be so happy to see them back as Fletcher. Listening back to their final album My Revenge now, it's timeless. It arguably fits better into the current crop of gruff punk rock than it did in 2003. I wish I could get down the front and shout along to these songs just one time.

Anti Vigilante
With the return of Random Hand and ClayPigeon in recent times, the next big ska punk reunion the scene needs has got to be Anti Vigilante. I saw Anti Vigilante so many times during 2012/2013, a time where I started to really go to gigs on a regular basis, that when they decided to call it a day it felt like a big loss. Live was when they were at their very best, playing with a hyperactive energy and power that few bands could replicate.

Arrogant Sons Of Bitches/Bomb The Music Industry
This is a bit of a cheat entry as it's two bands in one. But they're both Jeff Rosenstock’s former bands and both would get very excited reactions if reunions were ever announced. The Arrogant Sons Of Bitches were Jeff's first breakthrough band playing high energy ska punk. An ASOB reunion would send us ska fans into meltdown. Bomb The Music Industry were the band that put Jeff in the punk rock spotlight with his relentless DIY attitude. Stepping away from the ska sound slightly, BTMI liked to experiment with different sounds whilst always sticking solidly to their ethics. This is why the band were adored. I kind of think an ASOB/BTMI/Jeff Rosenstock tour would just be magical.

Potshot were my first introduction to Japanese ska punk music and I never got to see them live. That's one big reason for them to reunite right there. This was also a big introduction to the more brass lead chaotic style of ska punk that not many of the big American bands were playing at the time. Potshot would get audiences really moving and smiling once again if they ever were to return. A slot at Level Up Festival would do nicely.

The Loved Ones
Despite the success that Dave Hause has had with his solo albums and with his band The Mermaid, I think it's only a matter of time before we are treated to some Loved Ones reunion shows at a festival somewhere. The album Keep Your Heart has become a bit of a cult classic and features such bangers as Jane, 100k and Player Hater Anthem. Whenever I've seen Hause solo I've always really hoped for some Loved Ones songs to appear in his set – it always makes me happy when they do.

During the early 2000s I absolutely loved LA's Madcap. Across three albums they mixed street punk, '77 style punk and a bit of ska to a great fashion. Madcap don't just write songs, they write anthems. I go years without listening to them but when I do listen again I can sing along to every word across all three albums. There aren't many bands where I can do that these days. Lead singer Jonny still plays and records as Johnny Madcap And The Distractions but a proper Madcap reunion would be great.

These Ohio pop punks really seemed to be rocketing to the moon just before they split up in 2014. During that time they built up a dedicated fan base throughout America and in the UK and Europe. Playing catchy, hook filled indie pop punk with duelling vocals between Maura Weaver and Ryan Rockwell, they were a breath of fresh air. Nothing Can Kill The Grimace remains one of my favourite ever songs and their version of Werewolf Shame by Direct Hit is superb. I'm sure it's not long until they do a Fest reunion show and hopefully find their way back to the UK as well.

Captain Everything
Whenever Fastfade break out their cover of Chance Of A Lunchtime I remember how much I would have loved to have seen Captain Everything live. Masters of bubblegum thrash, Captain Everything are one of the most missed bands from the early 2000s era of UK punk rock music. Over the years, many of the bands from those days have got back together for the odd show or tour but as far as I'm aware Captain Everything are yet to do so. I'm sure if they did decide to get back together for a special show it would be some night.

Jesse James
This is a bit of a cheat as Jesse James did get back together for a handful of shows in 2014 and 2016 but I'm greedy and want more! Jesse James were one of the bands that first got me into underground UK punk rock and I'm forever missing them. Punk Soul Brothers and Mission remain as some of my favourite albums of all time. Their headline gig at the Borderline in Soho was one of my favourite sets of all time and I NEED MORE! …Pretty please.

This top ten was written by Colin Clark.

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