Newtown Neurotics, Action Pact - Fulham Greyhound

Matt Snow, NME 19th November 1983.


REMEMBER X-RAY SPEX, The Rezillos, The Lurkers? Action Pact do, and 1977 is still a good place to be.

Action Pact are Primo Britpunx in the grand old style. Spawned beneath the roaring flight path of Heathrow Airport, they are four raucous, fun-loving youngsters who sound as if they've just woken up to the big, bad world: "Racist bigotry/Government and Monarchy/Religious zealots/Gross blood sports/Macho sexists/Hardline Chauvinists/Poverty and need/Warmongers' greed/These are a few of things that need fucking!"
Hardly an original critique, nor for that matter a particularly helpful solution, but isn't it better to wear your heart on your sleeve than have none at all, to have a snotty nose than a clean one?
But being popsters not pamphleteers, Action Pact's invective leveled at vanity(Cowslick Blues'), The Royals ('Blue Blood'), fascists ('Losers')Goths ('Gothic party Time') the Swiss ('Suss of the Swiss') 'London Bouncers', 'People' etc. comes clad in bubbleglam toons and ramalamadingdong noize.

Mating the duck-walk with a chicken-dance, Wild Planet in Clockwork Orange bowler churns out a wall of guitar with alas, not a hint of the Diggle-ish melodic undercurrent discernible on vinyl. Grimly Fiendish and Thistles do the business on drums and bass, and chanteuse George Cheex bops along cheerfully like a nursery-school playleader. Hitching up the shoulder strap of her tie-dye dress, she appears a tad nervous of the maelstrom of bodies ricocheting around.
But despite technical problemettes, these troupers soon resume normal service. With a little less of the endearing daftness and a bit more grip they'll be getting there.

The Newtown Neurotics have already arrived. Remember the Clash in 77? Steve Drewett and his henchmen do, which is another good reason to forget the Clash'83.

Tonight the Neurotics are a revelation; I swear I haven't seen a more exciting British punk group for years. 'Kick Out The Tories', 'No Respect', 'Mindless Violence', a litany of hardcore Clashics with occasionally reggaematic gear changes. It sure beats rockin' the Casbah
And their cover of The Ramones' 'Blitzkrieg Bop', tight as a gnat's back passage, is as exhilarating as da brudders original that first hot summer of punk, seven years past.

It's little fish like Billy Bragg, The Redskins, Varukers, Gymslips and tonight's star turns that are blowing bolshy bubbles to pucker the stagnant bromide pondscum of Tubesville UK.

Let's make it a tidal wave.

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Colin Dredd - bass player Extraordinare