Tuesday, 7 June 2011

THE NAMES: Living Underground

A great punk band from Canterbury, contemporaries of The Ignerents (see label on right). I had the pleasure of seeing this lot live many times around 1979-81. Bass player Steve Conway wrote on 'ReverbNation':

"Originally The Names began mucking about with tunes when they were at Simon Langton [School] in Canterbury. This was just when new bands like The Buzzcocks, The Drones, The Adverts etc. were being played in the 6th Form Common Room...Of course it was not all smooth sailing, especially when Jim Hackford admitted a liking to Linda Ronstadt. Oh yes, and some people were into 'Yes' I think. I don't know who they were or what became of them. But these broad minded boys from the same stable as 'Caravan' and 'Soft Machine', soon found their own sound, away from Jimmy Dick's "KISS' albums and Capon's 'Bonzo Dog DooDah Band'
The original line up was: Simon Terry, John Lewis, Steve Conway, Jim Hackford. The final members still included Steve and John, but with the brilliant Russ Lax on drums, nicked from Billy Childish's 'Pop Rivets' when they were all at college together. This sounds like a bit of PEDIGREE! - (and I don't mean the dog's dinner!)."

This track bears some resemblance to The Jam's 'Going Underground' from the same year, but I can vouch for the fact that The Names' song predates the release of the Weller & Co single by some months.