Gig review: Sex Pistols Experience

“The security are there to protect you from us,” snarled singer Johnny Rotter.

Ed finishes the night in his own mercurial style.

Yes 1977 made a welcome return to the Starlite Rooms on Friday night.

Paul Stevens and Steve Niblettt, better known as Nitelite Promotions, punked up Estadio Edgar pairing legendary Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle actor Ed Tudor-Pole with the Sex Pistols Experience. Some of the 180 punters on the sidelines looked nervous as old-fangled punk pumped into JLS and 1D’d eardrums. The band took disbelief in their stride, mounting a continuous sonic assault spliced with copious expletives.

Expecting a mellowed performance from Ed Tudor-Pole and his battered guitar (in keeping with the passing of Pete Seeger) I was astounded that he attacked the £ashtonbury Festival for refusing to book him because he was ‘too punk’, while others turn him down for not being punk enough.

How you can criticise a hard working family as they struggle to bale-up bank statements after £ashtonbury sells out each year, I do not know!

New century Ed has more in common with Iggy Pop than the fresh-faced actor of the early seventies. His song about murdering a girl and stuffing her in a car boot may have baffled the audience but I’m sure it had deep meaning, somewhere. Lambasting the crowd mid-set, he left the stage to take on audience members, then began an impromptu sing-along before hurtling off-stage after more numbers, taking out an expensive microphone on the way. All-in-all the brilliance factor was intermittent, spoilt by a haphazard delivery and a less than scintillating guitar technique.

All was forgiven with the arrival of the Sex Pistols Experience, who quickly spurred on mosh pit mayhem, ensuring that beer sales rocketed as pints flew all over shirts, floor and ceiling. Even those oddballs seen near a Pakistani flag on the Meadow End the next day (before it disappeared amid a cloud of acrid smoke) danced frenetically to ‘Anarchy’. The few mere onlookers wilted under Mr Rotter’s sarcastic tongue: “Why doncha slip into sumfink more comfortable – like a COMA?”

A storming set ended with Ed coming back on to sing his ‘Swords of a Thousand Men’ hit. This combination of hard rocking young cover band and an aging punk figurehead needs fine tuning (and possibly a mite less solo R&R in the green room) but no one was in any doubt that we’d like them back at Estadio Edgar soon.