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Belgium Review SFAHB

Posted on June 17, 2021 at 10:45 AM

Maybe we'll break a myth, but let's face it: Punks can be nostalgic too! Let's take as proof “Songs From A Haunted Ballroom” , the new album by the cult Scottish Punk Rock gang Skids . It's hard to get more melancholy than this collection of titles paying homage to the Kinema Ballroom in Dunfermline, the local concert hall which gave the members of the group their first musical emotions.


 

Formed in 1977 in the Kingdom Of Fife region of Scotland, Skids (NDR: sometimes called “ The Skids ”) raged through the British Punk Rock / New Wave scene with varying degrees of success before throwing in the towel in 1982. During this period the group recorded four studio albums. One of them ( “The Absolute Game”, 1980 ) even reached the top 10 for UK album sales at the time of its release. The group reunited briefly in 2007 and 2010 to give concerts. He officially reformed in 2016 and released two albums ( “ Burning Cities “, 2018 and “Peaceful Times”, 2019 )since. Released in early June 2021 on the Californian label Cleopatra Records, “Songs From A Haunted Ballroom” is therefore the third release of the Resurrected Skids.

 


As the group explains in their album libretto, the Kinema Ballroom was a nightclub that from time to time turned into a concert hall. After having been the den of catatonic hippies for a while, the venue had the good idea to give voice to the gangs of the brand new Punk scene. The Skids had attended the sulphurous performances of the biggest groups of the genre. They had also played there at the opening of The Clash .

 


To remember this time that they consider to be blessed, the Skids offer us an album of covers of groups they have seen perform at the Kinema Ballroom. There are therefore covers of The Clash , The Adverts , Ultravox , Sex Pistols and Magazine . The group completes the album with songs borrowed from the repertoires of artists who have influenced their style, including The Stooges , Mott The Hoople , David Essex , Nick Lowe and many more. The end of the album is devoted to some new versions (rather well put together) of his personal hits:“Into The Valley” and “The Saints Are Coming!”.

 


“Songs From A Haunted Ballroom” is therefore a pleasant and rather successful album. A little too much maybe. Because if we can blame him for one thing, it is precisely, for having been recorded with love and passion for a bygone era, rather than with the healthy anger which, at the time, brought the punk movement to the side. dangerous which made it successful. A Punk Rock more quite Punk, therefore, but still intensely Rock.

 

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