The Damned were in NYC for two nights celebrating their 40th Anniversary and I am excited to share that we were there for both shows in terms of review and photography. Night #1 was given an in-depth overview by our own Steve Bunche and that narrative can be examined on THIS LINK. Now here is the photo gallery from this particular night.
Artist: The Damned Venue: Gramercy Theatre (New York, NY) Opener: n/a Date: 10/29/2016 Label: English Channel Records
Written By: Steve Bunche
“NEAT, NEAT, NEAT!!! 40 YEARS OF THE DAMNED AT THE GRAMERCY THEATRE”
Where to even start when discussing the Damned?
One of the seminal bands of the early British punk movement, the Damned always stood out from their safety pin-and-Doc Marten’s-sporting contemporaries in a number of ways, such as eschewing the era’s Mohawk and swastika fashion for markedly individual ridiculousness (singer Dave Vanian’s silly-yet-elegant Edwardian vampire chic and Guitarist Captain Sensible’s red beret, sunglasses, nurse’s uniform and occasional complete and utter nudity spring to mind), possessing a sense of humor, shamelessly allowing the beautiful voice of its singer to dominate the proceedings — seriously, Dave Vanian is blessed with one of pop music’s most singular, evocative, and beautiful vocal deliveries — and a flair for actual musicianship that flew in the face of British punk’s famous “any arsehole can pick up a guitar and bang out three chords” attitude.
While the majority of their contemporaries fizzled out like a fart in a thunderstorm, largely due to their cookie-cutter sameness and embarrassing (though well-intentioned) amateurishness, the Damned visibly grew and evolved from album to album, refining their sound from its rough-edged origins of four decades past into the tight, wholly professional and enthralling unit that endures to this day, despite numerous personnel upheavals and the criminally offensive ignoring that they receive from pretty much all but those in the know. Undaunted by such shabby treatment, the Damned have once more returned, this time to mark their forty years of merrily purveying polished mayhem to their loyal followers (and not one of their periodic so-called farewell tours) with an anniversary tour that recently brought them to NYC’s venerable Gramercy venue, a former vintage movie palace that now serves as an unpretentious concert space that’s mercifully free of the plague of hipster types that have infested what remains of the Big Apple’s dwindling old school punk scene. Continue reading The Damned @ Gramercy Theatre (10/29/2016)→
Artist: The Damned Title: “So Who’s Paranoid” Label: 02. Records Release Date: 12/9/2008 Genre: Punk Rock Rating: 2.5/5
The Damned are back with their tenth studio album, the previous being 2001’s GRAVE DISORDER, and to a greater degree than that record they’ve turned in yet another mixed bag.
As anyone who knows me well can tell you, I love the Damned, rating them at number three on my list of all-time favorite bands (coming in behind the Cramps, with Devo in the number one slot), and the reason they keep their place at number three is due to their incredibly inconsistent output. I’m talking in terms of musical flavor, not their sporadic album release rate, and while I salute them for their willingness to experiment and not necessarily pigeonhole themselves within the confines of their status as elder statesmen or original British punk — for those who don’t know, the Damned claim a place in punk rock history for being the first British band of the movement to release a single and an album, waaaaaay back in the stone age of 1976 — but yet again we’re handed a sampler of well-crafted musicianship that struggles to find its own unique voice or flavor that says “This is the Damned.” Continue reading “So, Who’s Paranoid” by The Damned→