1979: the year Babylon was burning with anxiety and the croptop revival exploded. No longer confined to small pockets of ex-punks, the skinhead style once again became a nationwide working class youth fashion, if not yet a ‘way of life’. This time around, it was helped along by 2 Tone and a street-smart second wave of punk bands. Continue reading
The likes of the Cockney Rejects and East End Badoes have penned entire albums recently on the subject of East End gentrification, but for Stewart Home it’s a cause to fight. A one-time Neoist but always a novelist, a quick scan of his books since 1988 reveals a range of titles from The Assault on Culture to The Nine Lives of Ray the Cat Jones, via Blow Job and Cunt, naturally. Stevo met the crophead chronicler of pulp and punk at the foot of the Barbican and repaired to a nearby Spoons to talk Marx and mods. Continue reading
Skinhead History, Identity and Culture
Kevin Borgeson and Robin Valeri, 2017 (Routledge)
Skinhead History, Identity and Culture is published by academic imprint Routledge in their Crime and Society series and at £110 a pop you may be tempted towards criminal enterprise just to afford a copy. Continue reading
Having dressed film stars (Quadrophenia, Absolute Beginners, Young Soul Rebels) and countless music videos, it’s unsurprising that Roger Burton sought to not only document his time in the business but also the vast attire he’s amassed along the way. Rebel Threads (Laurence King Publishing) is that book, spanning the range of British youth subcultures from the war onwards and delving into the fashions which gave them their name. Continue reading
they had to be. Continue reading
As a youth cult and subculture, skinheads, their fashion and music, have been the subject of numerous books and documentaries, some favourable and others not so.
This is an on-going, decade by decade, attempt to catalogue in 500 words or less the most notable (our own Research Unit, if you like), starting with Richard Allen’s Skinhead in 1970 and ending on ST Publishing’s output until the turn of the century. Continue reading
And now for something completely different… Tim Wells has written a ghost story especially for you. If you recognise the venue it was inspired by, congratulations.
For the uninitiated, Tim is an East London ranting poet. He was a teenage suedehead in the 1970s and a reader of Hard As Nails and the sussed skinhead zines in the 80s. He eats the odd dish of pie and mash.
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