A few years back I was necking a few at Bar Loco open mic night when a bloke took to the floor. Unaccompanied, without shoes and through gritted teeth he spat the lyrics to a collection of anti-establishment anthems and obscure folk tunes.
So menacing and aggressive was the performance that during the first few seconds the front row had jerked back several feet to relative safety. But by the end the entire crowd was hitting tables, stamping and singing along.
After Sandy Alexander returned to the audience I overheard numerous people saying to him, “You need a band behind you!” – I disagreed as I wasn’t sure you’d top that kind of raw performance by standing next to him, tickling a hi-hat.
Later I played a solo set on bass and afterwards Sandy and myself got talking.
Turns out him and local busker Liam Mulpetre (who also played a solo set) were already in cahoots to get something going so we started meeting up to jam (Liam later informed me that our first jam was that night – my memory of those days is a bit hazy for some reason).
The Dirty Knickers was born.
Although the band’s most easily described as ‘punk’ it couldn’t be further away from the bouncy 3 chord shite that seems to dominate the genre (at least in the mainstream).
The music spanned all genres, with a particular tendency to lean towards Jazz and Heavy Metal.
We played with many a talented drummer but unfortunately the one thing they all had in common was that they were just passing through so although we banked up a load of music, we never really got to tighten it up to form a proper unit.
Still, the time we did spend together was among the most experimental and expressive of my life as a musician.
The setbacks from never having a permanent rhythm section, and each of us having to pursue separate routes through the rat race to acquire capital meant the band has remained inactive for a couple of years.
Now there’s talk of a reunion…
May God have mercy on us all.