overground scene

Nomeansno in Brighton

After a prolonged period of no concerts at all, I experienced live two of my all-time favorite bands, Suffocation first and, then, Nomeansno a few days ago, within a period of three weeks. That was the second time I was at a Nomeansno concert, the first time being back in 2007.


Nomeansno has been a great love of mine since the first time I listened to them around 2002. I discovered Nomeansno in the context of my Jello-obsession; a period when I thought that whatever Jello Biafra touched turned into gold. Nomeansno had collaborated with Biafra on the album The sky is falling and I want my mommy, which was released in 1991. So, during my Jello-obsession I tried to get my hands on that record. Getting my hands on anything Nomeansno-related in Athens at the time proved to be very difficult. Until one day I found their CD The worldhood of the world (as such) at the Sonic Boom record store in Kypseli. However, I was not sure I was going to like them, since that was not their collaboration with Biafra I was looking for, so I asked George (the record store owner) to listen to the CD.  As Cheryl Lynn has said, it was instant love (not with George, with Nomeansno). Buying that CD was also symbolic of my transition from straight-on punk music to more “ambiguous” punk music.

Nomeansno tick most of the boxes on the “Best band in the world” list. They have consistently been releasing monumental albums since the mid 1980s. They are an amazing live band. They have been adding something new to their music with each new album. Their most recent offerings (e.g. All roads lead to Ausfahrt, Old, Jubilation) can easily compete with their best offerings from the past, although it is really difficult for me to decide which has been their creative-zenith. For some time I considered Wrong (1989) to be their best album, then I settled for Small parts… (1988). Then I switched to Dance of the headless bourgeoisie (1998) and more recently I particularly appreciated Why do they call me… (1993).

Their gig the other day was better than expected. The band was passionate and enthusiastic and gave an amazing performance. The setlist covered almost their entire discography. Glaring omission was the brilliant Small parts… album. Six Ramones songs where also thrown in for good measure in a show which included two encores! My favorite moments included, the tower, graveyard shift, the world wasn’t built in a day, slave, and everyday I start to ooze. After the gig I got their Jubilation e.p. which I couldn’t find since the time it was released back in 2011 and, like the good fanboy that I am, I got John and Rob to sign it for me.

Setlist: obsessed, the tower, oh no Bruno, everyday I start to ooze, ghosts, joyful reunion, the river, cats sex and nazis, he learned how to bleed, the world wasn’t built in a day, the graveyard shift, in her eyes, the hawk killed the punk, slave, Jubilation, sheena is a punk rocker, suzy is a headbanger, I don’t care, gimme gimme shock treatment, do you wanna dance, today your love tomorrow the world, plus another song which I did not know, probably from their Jubilation e.p.


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