A hot summer night in July and a typical English pub in the heart of a Portsmouth suburb, the pool table has been moved for a make shift stage for the night’s entertainment. If you've never experienced the excitement of watching a pub gig, it should certainly be on your wish list of things to do, the bands have no real stage on which to keep them and the equipment safe, the drunken audience at any time can get on the stage and grab the microphone and start singing. The unpredictability of a gig like this has most bands playing by the seat of the pants, these nights really work and in some cases the performances can be huge, as many bands out there touring today can testify. Tonight's support band on are called the 'Slut Pistols' and to be honest I was expecting 4 scantily clad female beauties playing Sex Pistols covers, what we got were four 40 something blokes including two members of ' Night of Treason' (Bill + Pinky) running through a set of punk covers, they were themselves honest in the fact that they had only one rehearsal and despite this put on quite an entertaining show. 'Pretty Vacant', 'Stepping Stone' and 'God Save the Queen' has everybody in the pub singing along including a few uninvited vocalists on stage.
Night of Treason so far have had a great 2010 with some great gigs, performing with The Alarm, Joe Strummer tribute 'Los Mondo Bongos' and some appearances at some local summer festivals, their hard working ethos and great music has gained them some great compliments from such great names as Billy Bragg and Mick Jones. 'My Town' kicks off the night, a song written about the surroundings in Portsmouth and as we are only a stones throw away from Fratton Park (Portsmouth Football Ground) this seems somewhat fitting. The bands arrival on stage changes the whole atmosphere in the place and as I gaze around at the many in attendance tonight, they all seem to being singing along enjoying themselves trying desperately not to spill their pints whilst dancing. The band's sound nestles somewhere between that of The Clash, Sex Pistols along with some of Joe Strummer's work with The Mescaleros, its very apparent that Joe has been a big part of all of their lives which comes out in their music in the form of the old school Punk sound along with flashes of Ska and Reggae.
The band perform well and get a great reaction from the crowd, a set which includes a few well selected covers and tracks from their forth coming debut album which should be due out by the end of the year. There is an unexplainable bond between all members in the band, a camaraderie that seems somewhat lost in many other bands and they all seem genuinely enjoying themselves playing together. The set ends abruptly when the landlord indicates that the time is up and the band have to stop as they would be upsetting the local’s residents such is the terms of the venues music license. This does not go down to well with the crowd as they want the band to just keep on playing, lead singer 'Pinky' apologizes and suggests everybody just joins him for a beer. A great night with great band who always put on a really great show and really know who to entertain.
Review and photo by Chinners