You better believe it! Punk is still alive and kicking and that night it had even more with long hair, lipstick, ripped fishnets and a bucket load of attitude!
The Haunt: Brighton 19/10/2016
“The performance and energy you witness at a Sex Pissed Dolls gig has to be seen to be believed. Fans travel hundreds of miles just to be there.” This sentence was proved true even before the gig started. I met up with some fans who had traveled from London and Newcastle to get to this gig held in Brighton at The Haunt!
The support had been provided by Southampton’s own The Novatones. Hats off to the guys in this excellent band. The Novatones gave a fine, polished performance during their thirty minute slot. I had seen them before supporting The Spitfires, this was a different crowd from that gig – but the Novatones were on point and kept everyone happy with their musicianship, songs and performance. They gave a stunning live rendition of their brilliant anthem ‘ Avenue Road’ . Well played Novatones!
The Sex Pissed Dolls
The lighting in the Haunt can always be tricky, but that night it was very dark in there and with the overworked smoke machine, the band were at times difficult to see. The Sex Pissed Dolls took to the stage…
The lights dimmed, the bass started – in came the drums and Nancy Doll crawled around the stage, around the drum kit took hold of the mic and we were off. A superb rendition of Psycho Killer followed. I was lucky to get Connie Rotters set list after the show. I couldn’t believe the number of songs that were squeezed into the set.
The Sex Pissed Dolls are:
Nancy Doll (vocals) Connie Rotter (guitars and vocals) Jilly Idol (bass and vocals) Anna Key (drums and vocals) Kitty Vacant (guitar and vocals)
Make no mistake – these guys mean business and they know their instruments. Nancy on stage is mesmerising, she grabs your attention along with the mic for the full set. The long jet back hair blowing out around her from the stage fans, the white eye shining out from under the brim of her white top hat. Nancy will set your ears on fire and sear your brain with her performance. She stalks the crowd as she prowls the stage. This lady comes across on stage as Dangerous – with a capital “D”. During the set she snarled at some bloke “you pervert” and face planted the bottom of the mic stand in his face – very punk rock! If it was staged it was very well done! Either way I don’t care – rather him than me!
The stunning guitar work from Connie and Kitty was just outstanding. The two of them put up a wall of sound made up with some super fretwork and blistering riffs. The Dolls have rightly been getting some great reviews for their live performances on this tour, and rightly so as I watched the performance unfurl. Do not go to see these guys thinking they are just a “covers” band. They really are much, much more than that. If you don’t like covers bands – please be assured this aint no wedding reception band! Most of the set is made up of songs by other bands, but they put their own stamp on each track they perform and with Connie and Kitty powering with guitars they put their own mark on each song. Punk is still alive and kicking and that night it had even more with long hair, lipstick, ripped fishnets and a bucket load of attitude!
The crowd surged forward and pogoed like it was ’77/78 when the Dolls hit us with their take on Sex Pistols classics such as Anrchy in the UK, Pretty Vacant, God Save The Queen and Holidays In The Sun. They did a superb job keeping the venom and power of those songs fully intact. Just great. Anna Key was sat at the back, almost totally invisible in the lighting, smoke and high stage she and the kit was placed on. You could however certainly hear her! Just fabulous and the sound engineers had spent some time getting the mix right for this gig. Working with the drums and the band was Jilly Idol. Jilly gave us a tremendous display on the bass guitar. She along with the band seemed to be having a riot of a time, everyone was all over the stage – no one stood still for more than a few seconds on stage or indeed in the energetic crowd.
More classics were fired at us in quick succession and they included Echo Beach, Sound Of The Suburbs, Teenage Kicks, Sheena Is A Punk Rocker. The Dolls did a couple of Ramones covers – giving them a suitable twist, but also played with breathtaking speed and accuracy.
The Sex Pissed Dolls just did not stop. A full 1 hour and 20 minutes set. More songs from the set included a sublime version of Sanctuary which just ripped into Should I Stay or Should I go. The crowd loving the opportunity to sing along and jump about at the appropriate points in the song.
Sex Pissed Dolls – Live – Ever Fallen In Love – give it a click and a watch.
Checking out the above video it may look chaotic – good! It was lively where I was. The crowd, the lights and one helluva great band combining to create a night I will not forget for a long time. These guys clearly love it! I would say it looks to me that they all 100% believe in what they do and, importantly, enjoy what they do. Nancy Doll will nail you to the floor and smoke the rest of the audience. If she fixes that white eye on you, I guarantee you will avert your gaze before she does!
70’s punk era
I said most of the set was a list of the great and good from the 70’s punk era, but we also got three, I think I got them all, songs of their own. Wow, these songs just slotted into the set as if they had been written “back in the day”. They were short, snarling punk anthems. The songs – from Connies set list indicated their own material as ‘Maniac’, ‘Shitty Old Town’ and ‘SciFi’.
Would I go see them again? Oh yes! I wouldn’t miss The Sex Pissed Dolls, and if you want a night of angst, passion, damn fine music and sheer down to earth punk fun – neither should you!
A huge thanks to the Sex Pissed Dolls and their team for allowing me to capture this exciting night of live punk n roll!
The Sex Pissed Dolls are on the web
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Please note all images are copyright, please do not copy. If any of the featured artists want copies of the images – or more if available – please get in touch.
All words/pictures and video – copyright to IANB/MEDIA WORKS/ Ian “The Lens” Bourn 2016.