“Not too bad for some geriatrics,” the audience erupts in laughter, “No us, you,” shouted Captain Sensible, lead guitarist of The Damned. A bit ironic, since the ramblings was coming from a guy stationed on a graffiti laced toilet. Sensible is still recovering from falling off a stage in Canada, a few months back and for all on the outside looking in; the injuries he sustained didn’t show up, until he left the stage.
Tuesday night’s show at the House of Blues was one in a number of comeback/reunion shows that have popped up over the past few years. This Damned tour marks the fortieth year in existence of the band. Of the original lineup, Sensible (Raymond Burns, originally on bass) and lead singer Dave Vanian (David Lett) are the only ones left. Sensible had graduated to lead guitar and as of 2004, the rest of the band has been keyboardist Monty Oxymoron, drummer Pinch and bassist Stu West. Unlike the anniversary tour of the Zombies a few years back, I really was surprised at how amazing the band was. While I was happy to experience the Zombies, this Damned show was nothing short of spectacular.
Over their forty or so years the Damned have put together a nice catalogue, including ten albums and two EPs. The set was composed of material off five of those and one EP as well as a few covers. The coverage of the set spanned the whole existence and was solid all the way through. Instead of breaking out with the sappy ballads, the band opted to stay true the punk mentality that first got them noticed back in England. Unlike most punk bands, and wanting to relish in the forty year achievement, the band came back for two encores. The latter being the best. “Noise, Noise, Noise” and “Smash It Up” were excellent leads into the second encore of one of the bands most popular songs, “Anti-Pope.” All in all a great show that I can mark off the bucket list, that I didn’t even know was on it. You can see more shots here.