Music journalist Chris Nickson catches up with the Mekons in their 35th anniversary year and takes a look back at the band’s long and colourful career in our latest in-depth blog feature.
For a certain group of music lovers, 1977 was the big bang, all about the major names of punk. The Sex Pistols and the Clash inspired and fuelled thousands of angry young musicians up and down the country. It caught the spirit of the time. But not long after that a young Leeds band put out its wry, honest answer to Strummer & Co.’s White Riot, the seven inches of glory that was Never Been In A Riot.
And so the Mekons were born. Thirty-five years later, when their compatriots have all fallen by the wayside, they’re still going, releasing music and touring, the cult band par excellence. Named after the evil alien in the Dan Dare comic strip that was required reading for boys in the 1950s and ‘60s, and formed from the same pool of Leeds University students that gave the world Gang Of Four (whose instruments the Mekons borrowed to record their first album) and Delta 5, along the way they’ve had their run-ins with a couple of major labels (Virgin and A&M) and happily spent time sniping at the establishment from out on the margins.
They’ve put out 18 albums covering all manner of musical ground, a few compilations, and now there’s even a documentary about them, Revenge Of The Mekons, that might find release this year.
Click HERE to continue reading Chris Nickson‘s feature on the Mekons.