It happened last night. The wind was taken out of my sails. I stumbled around my bedroom spluttering. Coughing and twirling. It had started all so suddenly. And then it ended just as quickly, thick, warm blood spewing out of my mouth with the last wretched retch. It was absolutely no coincidence that the needle had at that very moment dropped with a body shattering collision onto the brutalist grey vinyl that encased Bratislavan Nod’s You Have Been Proved Wrong.

Power trio Bratislavan Nod attempted to deny existence. They refused to believe. Their petulant refusal to believe became their faith and foundation. They were young, arrogant trust fund rebels with a nagging ache in their heart. They knew nothing about anything and couldn’t care less about everything else. You Have Been Proved Wrong was their only album, a cosmic stab in the dark.

Album opener, These Pretty Little Girls Shouldn’t Be Smiling At You is an elderly lady’s voluble remonstration with a bus driver about the questionable conduct of a gang of teenage girls. All set to a fluffy bossa nova beat and the unpleasant crooning of a jaded heart attack. Blinded By Elephants Playing Beatles Songs Ever So Badly is elemental in its juddering wrath, bathed in Cream and Humble Pie with lashings of astral levity. As if that wasn’t enough (and it probably should be) Ticked Off With The Traditional Handshake is bigger than the Big Bang. Oliver Spite’s guitars glisten and glide with the precision of a freshly sharpened carving knife, Anthony Spite’s bass caves in the Golem’s skull and Benjamin Spite dives and dashes into his compact drum kit. It burns Emerson, Lake & Palmer at the ashes and consumes them alongside the blood of a thousand aching angels.

This really happened. It will never happen again. God willing.


Whatever happened to the likely lads? Whatever happened to Tony Blair? Whatever happened to prog-pub? Whatever happened to Tiny Blair and his Chips & Gravy cohorts? Chips & Gravy were part of a microscopically small satanic offshoot of the provincial pub-rock scene. Bands that set off into outer space from their broken down bases of industrialised Essex dives.  Chips & Gravy were the generals of this intransigent anti-scene.

Tiny Blair took the rhythm and blues combo Estuary Croutons and transformed them with his malevolent guitar wizardry. Bad wizards with hats adorned with sugary all sorts, dripping in tangy honey. Urbane Discrepancy is the band’s phantasmagorically fizzling third album. It takes the primitive pound of pub grind and transcends the limits of profundity. Whereas before a pot-pourri of influences were sprinkled about hesitantly this time round the band pick up the sweet smelling bowl and smash it over the landlord’s bulbous head. Hairy Snuff Wreck diligently lays out a plan for action combining neo-pagan Gaelic imagery and a primal Move-like dash through the dark alleyways if Jack The Ripper’s brittle soul. Buttery Eggs Amok is Yes and battery farmed West African
funk rummaging through Wilko Johnson’s rag bag of greatest riffs. And The Soul Goes On turns everything down a notch. It’s a sturdy moody blues ode to the serendipity of nature. The tempestuous Hot Rods guitars return on the bespectacled-Michael Caine and moustachioed-Stanley Baker toe tapping Zulu beatdown, Don’t Freak Out Mama, I Ain’t Gonna Cry No More.
Chips & Gravy entered the stratosphere never to return. They were last seen blasting the Optotron galaxy into tiny pieces with beer bottles, cricket bats and sweaty determination. No peas, no bread, just chips and gravy.

In 1971 Meester Barnes invented industrial noise-rock. Imagine The United States Of America taking Nine Inch Nails bowling in a post-apocalyptic wasteland in the year 3102. Trippy neon soundscapes intermesh with David Koresh jiving amidst banging, clanging guttural interference. They combusted with a faint autonomy six months after the release of …Serves You Well, leaving behind a culpable mystery no sane musicologist dare uncover.

Anyway let’s get down to molten brass tacks. The party gets off to a gory Manson party start with the fragile metallic lullaby, Where Is The Truth Mandingo? Its arcane percussive philosophy meanders bristling with hysterical squawks. It won’t be difficult getting lost in the grinding testicular monotony of He Who Hath Dined. An army of barelytuned acoustic guitars bombard dead crippled children with a callous cacophony of macho rutting. Hushed whispers phonetically share delicate secrets. We Talk To Racists is a factory in revolt. Flesh and steel melding, corrupting and destructing as vocalist Tim Britons chants in tongues.

…Serves You Well will deny you. It is Macbeth’s three witches scrabbling around in their trough scoffing at the lot of mankind’s abrupt fatalism.

In 1987 The Petulant Peters released their first album, You Are Soya Groovy, to little acclaim and fanfare. And deservedly so. It was an appalling slice of post-tumescent power-pop. It jiggled Colgate smiles and severed all connections to the periodic table’s high falutin’ gloss over roll over. Keyboards flushed away heartless parades and glass chinned guitars swaggered and staggered to the desktop recycle bin.

The truculent four-piece went on hiatus. They worked real hard for real money before returning two years later with Corrosive Blunder. Once again to little acclaim and little fanfare. But this time it could not have been less deserved. This time the band took their cues from MC Lyte’s Cha Cha Cha, Madonna’s Like A Prayer and Les Baxter’s outré exotica and attached them to their tremulous guitar pop shock.

The title track has been banished to the furthest reaches of a triumphant synaptic underworld. Simian Dancer is a testily considerate homage to Trinidadian calypso that practically begs to disappear into a thrice contested hole. The album closes with the thirty-minute epic, Oh Joe, Where Did You Put It?, a delightfully comprehensive overview of the reign of Charlemagne set to a curmudgeonly industrial waltz.

Corrosive Blunder is a neglected nugget that lacks positional sense and cohesive logic but does stretch the limits of ferocious doublespeak.