The Met Lounge, Peterborough
This well-known band from Surrey formed in 1977 and have been gigging ever since. They enjoyed some commercial success back in 1979 with Sound of the Suburbs (from their At The Chelsea Nightclub album) which made the U.K. singles chart, reaching the dizzy heights of the top ten. There have been a good few changes to the group’s ‘members’ since then and the current four-piece line-up had the core of dedicated fans stomping.
The present day band is made up of J C Carroll, Chris Payne, Nick Cash and Nigel Bennett and, despite having a combined age off well north of 200, they played hard, loud and fast. Individually they were quite obviously talented musicians and played tight as a group, as you would expect with their vintage!
With a strong punk vibe and all original tracks, they managed to showcase the many different genre and influences evident throughout their long and illustrious career. You could occasionally spot a hint of the mod coming through, but not enough to hit the spot for anyone wanting that style.
It was clear to see the band were having a ruddy good time, the anecdotes between songs were a great insight into their background and very often hilarious. This resulted in them lifting the whole mood of the room and drawing the crowd in for the next song.
Within the mixed crowd, it was quite obvious there were at least a handful of fervent supporters, likely from the groups’ earliest origins. They took their place in front of the small, even intimate stage, with beer in hand and fists pumping. They all seemed to know every lyric. There were a few younger faces who seemed to appreciate the power and rebellious attitude of authentic old-school punk rock. Good to see.
On a personal level, I would have to say it wouldn’t have been something I would normally have attended. But I am glad I did, I enjoyed much of the music, a lot of the humour and also the unpolished sound of kosher punk.
If you are looking for a fun and upbeat dose of nostalgia, with a bit of a gritty edge, I would thoroughly recommend a night with The Members. Even if punk isn’t your thing, you will still have a great time.