UK Subs + Support (the Box, 19-Jul-09)

Having spent the best part of the day with Chloë’s band and crew pouring a steady stream of booze down my throat, making it to the crowded Box in time to catch openers Hated ‘Til Proven was something of a miracle but somehow I managed it, and good thing too as they kicked some serious ass.  They’ve tightened up massively since I last saw them, and their hardcore-punk-with-a-hint-of-metal sound has improved immeasurably, belting out a succession of 90-second lessons in tight riffs and screaming vocals.

Next up were The Targets, who brought a slightly more melodic but no less powerful flavour to proceedings, and their unassuming appearance belied the true nature of their act.  Packing one hell of a punch, this is a hard-working band that anyone with any sense should go and see as soon as they can.

When the Subs hit the stage the crowd exploded into a furious sea of bodies, and "Grandpa Punk" Charlie Harper showed that qualifying for a bus pass doesn’t mean you have to stop ripping it up.  Although they’ve changed their lineups more often than some people change their undies the basic Subs essence remains, and I’ve never seen such an enthusiastic crowd at the Box; stand too close to the stage and you risked being sucked in to the throng of pogoing and angry moshing — I’m no spring chicken, but judging by the age of some of those involved I suspect local osteopaths have been doing a brisk trade this week!



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