live review

AK79 Friday 21st November 2008

AK79 Friday 21st November 2008

November 21 2008
Monte Cristo Room, Auckland

Reviewed by UTR
30th March 2010

AK 79 Live
Friday 21st November 2008
Monte Cristo Room, Auckland City

Now I’m no authority on punk, let alone NZ punk, but this is an overview from an audience perspective of the AK79 Live show held at the Monte Cristo Room on Friday.

Walking down the stairs into the Monte Cristo Room was a weird sensation - a time shift and an energy bubbling away.

It was hot and sweaty and the only chance to see the bands, apart from diving into the squishy room was to peep through small holes in the crowd.

Proud Scum
The first band that I saw was Proud Scum, the Auckland band that reached notoriety for their song Jump Off Grafton Bridge.

Like the singer says , it’s been 28 years, but the songs are as fresh as ever and the band is playing them with such a joy surrounding them, both on stage and across the consuming audience.

The Terrorways
Shit, I wasn’t expecting to know so many songs! The Terrorways have some word class songs and they were easily the most explosive on the night, whipping the crowd into a frenzy with their now classics “Short Haired Rock and Roll” and “Never Been to Borstal”.

The Scavengers
The Scavengers played next with a superb surprise. Dion of D4/Nothing At All fame was helming the vocal duties, having flown back from NY for the 2 nights. It has to be said that it was some of the D4 covers that got people like me fully aware of some of the songs of AK79. Their set was overflowing with sing-along punk numbers and simple bar-chord punk anthems. FN great

The Spelling Mistakes
I guess the headline of tonight, The Spelling Mistakes came across the most pro. They were tight with a spazzing bopping frontman obviously enjoying the crap out of the night, as everyone one there was. Screams of requests came flooding forward, only to be directed form the singer to the bass player and into oblivion. It seemed like the way this band liked to interact, a little cheeky and still in charge.

This is what punk was about - user participation. The band was not to be heroed, the crowd was the music and the band was there to make their voice louder.

AK79 Live was as much about the audience as the bands onboard as was clearly evident the more the crowed surged the livelier the bands got.

It was time to grab me one of those Limited Edition AK79 reissues to remind me time and again how important this scene and their songs were to Auckland and the world, even now. Now where’s that deodorant…

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