TVD Live Shots:
The Vibrators, Menace, and Time to Kill at the Islington Assembly
Hall, 5/26

Punk rock royalty came together for a final showdown celebrating 40 years of angst, attitude, and anthems. The Vibrators were part of the first wave of British Punk carrying the torch for many to later follow. Signing to Epic records in 1977, the band unleashed a genre-defining masterpiece upon the word in the form of Pure Mania. The album stands the test of time and was named to the Guinness Encyclopedia of Popular Music as one of the 50 best punk albums of all time.

Opening the evening was a new project by current Vibrators frontman Pete Honkamaki called Time to Kill, a three-piece that brought a no-frills approach to celebrating the foundations of punk with some solid songwriting and snarling attitude. I think they are pretty new as I couldn’t find any music available online, but I’d be one of the first to pick up their record once it comes available.

Next up was Menace. I’m not too familiar with these guys, and there’s not a ton of info online when I searched. I did find a few punk sites that reference Menace as one of the wave of punk bands to explode out of London in the late ’70s. Fun band live, now I need to track down their music.

After a few select numbers, it was time to get down to business with the big finale. I’m guessing that this is not only the last time these punk icons would share the stage together but very likely the first as well. 28 songs, a Stones cover, and hundreds of hardcore fans. It was a bittersweet moment in punk history, but one that was necessary and one that will undoubtedly leave its mark on the world of punk.

From the opening number to the closing finale, it was a barnburner of a setlist climaxing with a full on crowd induced sing-along of The Vibrator’s classic “Baby Baby Baby.” The rest of the evening would allow for a rotating cast of characters from the band’s impressive catalog. Who was there? Everyone who played a meaningful role in securing this band’s legacy—John Ellis, Gary Tibbs, Don Snow, Knox, Phil Collier, Phil Ram, Nick Peckham, and Pete and Nigel Bennett from the current lineup.

MENACE

TIME TO KILL

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