I once worked out that I’d probably seen over 4000 bands live, so you’ll have to excuse me if I can’t remember every single gig that I went to, especially as I was mightily pissed for a lot of them. Including, I think, Peter and The Test Tube Babies, who may have played my hometown of Penzance in 1986. We used to get loads of Reggae and Punk bands down to the very South West of the UK and I went to as many as possible, and I was shit-faced at all of them.
And after all those year, Peter And The Test Tube Babies, are still going strong, with possibly their final album, That Shallot… which if it is their final outing, it’s a very good way to bow out as the band approach their 40th anniversary.
If you’ve not heard the band before, they’re an old school Punk band, that crossover into Oi. And they also have a wicked sense of humour… check out some of their older tracks, Elvis Is Dead, Vicars Wank Too, and not forgetting their ode to pornstar Oral Annie (Oral Annie, is such good fun, Oral Annie, takes it up the bum).
My favourite track is still their 1982 debut single, Banned From The Pubs… which I still play on a regular basis to this day.
Ok, getting stuck into this album, it’s a mix of in your face Punk, a few weirder moments, as well as the usual smattering of humour.
In Your Face and None of Your Fucking Business are perfect examples of gangshout vocal Punk/Oi and both tracks are as good as the aforementioned Banned From The Pubs. As is the tongue in cheek, C U Next Tuesday… which is stupidly catchy… and I’m still bemused why bands such as this never reached the heights of pop shit such as Green Day, which some people classify as Punk…
And the band obviously think along the same lines, as they demonstrate on Crap Californian Punk Band.
Maybe it’s because of quirky shit like Silicone Beer Gut, which sounds like Captain Sensible doing an Irish Folk parody… great lyrics… but man it’s an annoying song. The James Bond parody, Tramp Killer doesn’t rock my boat either.
But for the most part, this is a fine example of band that haven’t rest on their laurels. The fire is definitely still going strong, and the lyrics are still either funny, or very true and they’ve translated their original sound into something current. As in they include modern situations and they don’t just harp on about the 70s and the same subjects from yesteryear.
So many of the older bands from the Rock and Metal worlds are producing utter crap as they near retirement… that’s most definitely not the case here.