We hope this article will shed light on questions you were always afraid to ask, for few topics are more divisive than monkey boots. However, Crombieboy does not pretend that his stab at trackng the history of the boot is comprehensive. It’s just an attempt that heavily relies on word-of-mouth accounts – for few topics are more shrouded in mystery than the history of this fine footwear item. If you know more than he was able to find out, we’d encourage you to enlighten us. Continue reading
You’d have to go back quite some time to find proper skinzines like Hard As Nails, Zoot, Bovver Boot and the like. Back far enough, in fact, to the era before even the MP3 or dial-up modems.
Verbal, despite the aggro title, isn’t a ‘sussed skin’ zine in the vein of Hard As Nails, though it’s arguably as sussed as any of those earlier titles, and no one could deny that editor John King has more than earned his stripes as the novelist behind Skinheads and the Human Punk nights at the 100 Club, if not more. Continue reading
Footballer biographies are two a penny these days, but this wasn’t always the case. First published in 1996, Chelsea, Stoke and Arsenal legend Alan Hudson’s The Working Man’s Ballet was unusual in its time of being a non-ghosted tale of battles on and off the pitch, demons fought and, yes, Ben Shermans worn. London Books, run by John King (Skinheads, The Football Factory) and Chelsea Shed boy Martin Knight, are now republishing Alan’s biography, which John says is an account of “shared rebelliousness” between the dressing room and the terraces.
Despite their band name, the Young Ones are actually in their thirties like all of us. Unlike most of us, they are a band from the Oi capital of Maastricht, which is run by them and their elder peers in Close Combat (who we interviewed before). They have finally started doing some new music after being out the game for some eight years. Their sound is like sped-up Cockney Rejects with a smattering of Hard Skinesque humour. Girth spoke to their bassist Merijn, whose interest in conspiracy theorist David Icke is second only to ours. Continue reading
It’s fair to say that scooters were one of the few staples of mod culture to survive intact as the subculture gave way to skinheads and bootboys. Many a self-respecting bootboy was pictured above their two-stroke brand of choice in the early seventies, and the presence of the mod revival later in the decade could give the impression that the scooterboy culture was all the rage throughout. But as Ashley Lenton (Classic Scooterist, Vespa News) writes here, scooterists were actually a dying force in the seventies and it was only thanks to a dedicated band that we can document it now. Continue reading
It was no less than Garry Bushell himself who wrote of “dreading well-meaning graduates with crops and tailor-made crombies” in Sounds when he met with the teenaged members of ‘Skins Against the Nazis’ in 1978. Stevo had a few less hang-ups about meeting a fully-fledged Professor at the Sorbonne in Paris to go over his new book Punk Is Dead (Zer0 Books), which in part deals with aspects of skinhead’s troubled history among punk.
But then Andrew Gallix, who also edits the eclectic and punked-up webzine 3:AM, was a little more gracious and even-handed than some of the book’s other contributors when it came to recounting his own experiences.
Bored of playing Ed Sheeran’s new album over and over? Run out of Grateful Dead and Frank Zappa bootlegs to explore? Grown sick of your homemade ‘Beyoncé Ballads’ compilation? Abdul Bleach Boy takes you on a journey through recent crophead releases, not suggesting but telling you what to listen to. Continue reading
There are so many Italian skinheads living in London today, one wonders when they’ll start running out of them back home. Younger on average than the indigenous skinhead population, they infuse our scene with the kind of energy only a country shaped like a steel-capped boot could produce.
True enough, the relationship between the local tribes and new arrivals has sometimes been a bit… tense. To contribute to a better understanding between the two, we thought we’d find out more about Italian skinheads and their specific history. Who better to ask than Flavio Frezza, who has written a book called Italia Skins?
Crombieboy spoke to him about Italian skins past and present, and we’re proud to present the resulting interview:
PART 1 – From ‘nihilist punk’ to skinhead
PART 2 – Bands, politics & trouble
PART 3 – Today and tomorrow
Many thanks to Valentina G of Italian Skinheads for kindly letting us use her pictures. Oi Oi!
Italia Skins is out on Hellnation Libri/Red Star Press now.
The quest for the perfect pair of sta prest trousers is as old as humanity itself. However, it was only during a brief period between 1964 and some time in the 1970s that Levi’s produced immaculate perma-crease chinos from poly-cotton. Since then, humankind has been forced to put up with plenty of inferior product. As readers of this blog may remember, we often end up bitterly disappointed even when we put our hopes up high.
What distinguishes Nik Louis‘s brand Ivy Threads of Boston is its founder’s impressive knowledge of the original garments and a fanatical perfectionism otherwise only known from Japanese denim manufacturers. Crombieboy talked to him about his plans to reproduce the original Sta Prest of the 1960s. Continue reading
You may be surprised to read that a local variation of ‘the look’ was seen in Warsaw as early as 1979. Kryzys were one of the earliest Polish punk bands, and their drummer Maciej ‘Magura’ Goralski was the mod of the band. Continue reading