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Theatre Of Hate + Venus Fly Trap, Bedford Esquires Fri 28th Oct

October 28, 2016 @ 8:00 pm - 11:00 pm


Following a sell out show back in 2015 Theatre Of Hate return to Bedford Esquires this October as pert of their Europen tour.

In 1980, Kirk Brandon formed Theatre Of Hate from the ashes of heralded punk band The Pack. Joining Kirk on vocals were notable punk musicians Stan Stammers and Luke Rendall, along with old school friend, Steve Guthrie and Canadian born John “Boy” Lennard, who revolutionised the band’s sound with his haunting sax lines.

Theatre Of Hate’s debut double-A-side single, “Legion”/”Original Sin”, topped the independent chart in 1980, and “Westworld”, their debut album, produced by Mick Jones from The Clash and released in 1982, held the number one position for 21 weeks. The single taken from the album, “Do You Believe In The Westworld?” has become an anthem and is still widely played in clubs and on international radio, as well as featuring on numerous compilation albums.

Supporting the likes of The Clash & Ian Dury lead to Theatre Of Hate headlining major venues across the UK & Northern Europe.

Theatre Of Hate imploded in 1982, with Kirk taking Stan forward to form Spear Of Destiny, but the band has resurfaced over the years to play some very special shows.
Having been asked by John Curd to join The Damned for a massive show at London’s infamous Roundhouse in December 2014 the band once again joined the fray. A short set of dates around the London anchor show attracted rave reviews, as did a 6 night night SOLD OUT run in December 2014.

2015 saw the band play two short jaunts across the UK in April and December both sets of dates wowed large crowds.

During touring in 2014 and 2015 the band constantly recorded at Oxygen Studios in Manchester, the first new studio album in 30+ years is now complete! ‘Kinshi’ will be released on October 14th 2016 on CD, Vinyl, Download & Dub. The 12 brand new songs are simply stunning. Part funded by a fan based private Pledge campaign this THEATRE OF HATE masterpiece is all set propel the band even further back into the spotlight. Between, October 26th and November 6th 2016, THEATRE OF HATE will tour ‘Kinshi’ across the UK.

Kirk, Stan and John will be joined by current Spear Of Destiny band member Adrian Portas (New Model Army), Danny Farrent (Buzzcocks) and Chris Bell(Hugh Cornwall) to pay homage to the iconic TOH sound.

Tickets priced £15 are on sale at 11am on Sunday 17th July from seetickets and in person from Esquires Bar, Planet Boutique and Marios Hair from the 24th July

Support comes from Venus Fly Trap


Venus Fly Trap ‘Metamorphosis (1987 – 2007)’Regular followers of my ‘Tickling Our Fancy’ roundups will have recently seen my review of the 1980s gothic post-punk obscurity 5 Against The House by the all too fleeting The Tempest. Re-released by Optic Nerve Recordings, an echo of what was a promising band from the Northampton hothouse that also produced Bauhaus, 5 Against The House shined for only the briefest of moments: being the only LP the group released. Still, it caught the imagination, favorably picked-up by both John Peel and Kid Jensen at the time.One of the founding members of that band – with a name that sounds like a cooler than cool character from a 2000 AD comic strip – Alex Novak, went on to form theVenus Fly Trap at the backend of the 80s. Producing albums sporadically for the next two decades, the last Zenith in 2004, Novak has recently returned to the studio to record new material under the moniker. While idly waiting in anticipation for the fruits of that labour, fans and those intrigued enough can currently enjoy the back catalogue compilation Metamorphosis.
For those less familiar with the ominous grinding Sci-fi buzz of the Venus Fly Trap, the best descriptive summary is by the group themselves: ‘darkened noise that’s accompanied by a flowing sense of bleak electronic rhythm.’
From the very beginning of the catalogue (though a version also appears on 1992’sPandora’s Box too), there’s the Nick Cave cesspool of abusive morose and Killing Joke industrial menace ‘Morphine’, and the skid row on the tracks ‘Desolation Railway’. Sinewy, dystopian and lurking in the shadows, an embodiment of addiction and languorous resignation, these early tracks show a penchant for gangly post-punk gothics. By 1990, and the group’s Totem album, they’ve transmogrified Cabaret Voltaire, PiL and Sigue Sigue Sputnick on songs such as ‘Rocket USA’. Propelling James Dean into the future shocks, ‘Extra Gemini Lounge’ bares the whip-snap electronic pulse of John Foxx.
After originally taking a hiatus in the early 90s, Novak reformed the group in 95 withNeil Ridley on bass guitar (later replaced by Tony Brooks), Andy Denton on drums and Gray Lennon on guitar. In the aftermath of the cold war, that incarnation of the band produced the album Luna Tide, which featured the “Russkies are coming” paranoia of ‘Moscow Menagerie’: a sort of quasi-Sex Pistols ‘Holidays in The Sun’ for the post rave generation. Elsewhere the band talks the Deutsch on ‘Mercury’, traverse the Sisters Of Mercy and burbling squelchy synth rays on ‘Pulp Sister’ and raise a wry smirk on ‘Human Fly’.An extension of the exuberant wiry futurists The Tempest in many ways, the Venus Fly Trap progressed with a darker vision of pop art. Escaping numerous radars this ‘greatest hits’ collection is a good introduction to one of the UK underground’s best-kept secrets.



October 28, 2016
8:00 pm - 11:00 pm


Bedford Esquires
60A Bromham Road
Bedford, MK40 2QG United Kingdom


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