Punk Is Wonderful

UK Subs, Criminal Mind

40 Years of Another Kind of Blues Tour 2019, Arena Wien – Kleine Halle, Austria 20190130


Pretty much one year ago a British Punk institution played at the Chelsea in Vienna. One year later and to the 40th anniversary of their debut, they need a bigger location to fit all of the fans from the beginning as well as the young supporters into the room.

Like that, the offspring from Bristol, home of other stunning musicians of other genres like Kate Stapley, opens on the stage of the so-called “small hall” of the Arena. For Criminal Mind (not the series), it is the last show of this tour, before acts like e.g. Boogie Hammer take their slot. Visually their bandanas remind of Suicidal Tendencies, while their immaculate sound is more of the Sex Pistols who played the Nova Rock already, the Ramones (whose Richie is coming tho the Viper Room soon) or in some moments Motörhead. The room gets almost crowded and also the main act can be found in front of the show.

“I’m ready, what about you?” Charlie Harper (not the series character) of the UK Subs then asks his audience from the stage with two beers in his hands, that won’t be his last ones for the next approximately 90 minutes. His group already toured with other formations of legendary status like Motörhead. At the age of 74, he still delivers a motivating show, screaming “Woo!” after every song and pleading for anarchy and against the Brexit. Few people join him on stage, one obviously happy guy with a huge UK Subs flag, another one trying to stage-dive (“That was very girly.”) and a girl doing the same (“You can do whatever you want – Now that was proper!”). In the middle, the heads bounce up and down like ping-pong balls. Like that and after the whole first record and some more songs, the crowd earns three encores first followed by another two. And even though first the room felt comfortable because of the seasons, after half of the gig at least it feels like the summer sauna.