Gorilla - The Final Gig
Derby Vic Inn
October 31 1998
Remember that date. Its the day yet another great band lost the battle against overwhelming apathy that sweeps the current scene when it comes to live bands, especially UK bands. I can be as guilty of that apathy as anyone else, and Ill readily admit to it. But this time I dont think I was, and so Im going to have my say whether it offends anyone or not.
So, how many of you knew of Gorilla then? Well, if you read the mainstream press, it makes it easier for me, as Ill only need the one hand to count on. Now how many of you can name a dozen US bands that have released one album or less, and wear baggy pants. Shit, Ill need my computer to keep score there!
Yes, I know I can be guilty there. I go on about US bands. Theres nothing wrong with them. Provided that you treat UK bands with the same respect. Balance. Its a word Ive found myself using a lot since starting YAZ. Balance between US and others. Bands do exist outside of the States. But that shouldnt take away from American bands. Establish a balance. I hope that I do. Its sometimes feels harder to get info on UK bands, but, thats because I rely on the Internet a lot, and also because Im just not very good at this. I dont have the connections established that I probably need. Thats my fault, and Im trying to rectify it. I know its a problem. It nearly accounted for this zine about a month back. It feels too mainstream. To many bands being covered that have already made it, dont need the support as much as the upcoming bands. But I have to find the upcoming bands. So, Im trying to do something. What about you?
Its just endemnic of the uphill struggle in this country. Took some issues of the last zine to some record shops today. Can I leave some here please? asks me. If its free yeah says one shop. so I place them next to the £2 per issue Maximum RocknRoll. Well, comes the reply in one of the other shops, leave a few. I dont know if we can get rid of them. We havent really got much space. If you have space for one issue, you have space for 10. Besides, when the ticket shop next door was open (this narrows it down for people who know Nottingham!), they managed to get rid of a fair amount of copies for me. These are shops which specialise in the music I try to cover. This thing is free, and they dont know if they can get rid of it. So what am I to do if I charge for this thing as some people have suggested I should. And which my bank balance tells me I should. Nothing. Cos the country is apathetic. And if a zine faces this problem, heaven only knows what the bands face to get themselves heard or their music in the shops. Maybe its about time people who were so fucking real stopped worrying about how they looked, and concerned themselves with supporting the music scene instead of whether their fucking wallet chain is long enough. I know, this shouldnt be about me. But theres a theme running through this issue. Me feeling sorry for myself. Thinking of jacking this in. I know that no-fucker takes any notice of this. People may read it, but thats all. So why should I bother. But without this sort of thing, where will the support for these bands come from? I cant just give up like this. And fuck all of you who do shit all but may not like me slagging stuff. Its getting to the stage that the more I offend the better I feel. Prove me wrong. Rant over.
But Gorilla have lost the battle. Finally. Shouldnt have happened, but, well, maybe in retrospect it was on the cards. But that doesnt diminish their worth, or what they did. Anyway, the Vic was rightly packed to the rafters tonight, for what was one of the hottest gigs Ive been to. And one of the most shambolic. Which was wonderful. Coming on to Joan Jetts We Love RocknRoll Andys guitars immediately fails. Things eventually get worked out, but its indicative of the night. But it doesnt matter. This is the end. Tonight is relaxed. Theres a sense of anticipation, probably a sense of sadness. I think this is probably my favourite Gorilla song says John before The Working Man Has Found Us Out. The million selling Outside is aired, as is Let You Down from the same EP. Superstar, some new tracks that unfortunately well never get the chance to hear properly now, a snippet of Iron Man, and numerous guitar hero poses and snippets from Andy. And Neal is still one of the greatest drummers out there. David may have played better, as he sort of claims after, but its not noticeable. Even when a shambles, the band still piss over most of the competition out there. And finally, it ends with Acid Test. Well, until we get some oldies to finish with Bulldozer. 98 Grand is the final ever live Gorilla track.
Most of you dont realise it, but Gorilla are responsible for one of the finest songs by a British band in recent years in Acid Test. Combine that with their previous incarnation, The Beyond, who recorded one of the best songs by a British band in the last decade, Eve Of My Release, and you realise how important this band was. They were innovative. They were unique. They sounded like no-one else. Afterwards John indicated that he wont be carrying on. Which means that weve lost one of the most unique voices around. For that at least, they are more important as far as Im concerned than the Deftones or Korn or Marilyn Manson will ever be. Their loss is up there with Faith No Mores split as far as Im concerned. Bands that never got the respect and credit they deserved. While half of the current hottest property arent even fit to drink Gorillas urine.