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The Damned



Suppose you are seventeen and the year is 1977. You enjoy listening to Status Quo and The Rolling Stones, while you consider yourself old enough to have your first pints and cigarettes. Until someone shoves a record into your hands. THE DAMNED is written in fearsome letters on the cover photo. And underneath it, "New Rose". You shrug, make your way to Dad's gramophone, put the needle in the right place and BAM, all your musical taste can go straight to the dump. Later you see a video of the same group on Dutch TV. The singer looks like a Bram Stoker, the drummer looks like an unemployed person who starts and ends his day with nine pints of beer, the guitarist wears a pink shirt and you wonder how many punches you will get in the face if you wear something like that in the village bar on the market and the bass player, what on earth does he look like? Is he wearing a dress? And that in combination with the most arrogant look you ever saw, hidden behind weird sunglasses. Plus, some of the band members have keys or safety pins pushed through their earlobes. How many bottles of Mercury Chrome would your mom have in the house, just in case you try that last one too, and it goes wrong? No never mind, at the village pub in the market square you're bound to get a punch in the nose as soon as you come near the front door. No matter, you're seventeen, the year is 1977 and you've just discovered punk. And today is 2024 and you're 64. In your record case is an entire discography of The Damned, who helped invent punk and with 1980's "The Black Album" immediately put just a second musical genre into the world: goth rock. With The Sex Pistols and The Clash, The Damned is The Holy Trinity of English punk. The Father (Rotten and co), The Son (Strummer and co) and The Spirited Four (The Damned!). On Sunday, August 4, they will play at our dance, and dancing with The Damned means jumping up and down until your meniscus begs for a Supertramp song.