Written by Samuel Barker
Feb 14, 2004 at 08:00 PM
ImageWhen the Subhumans first played their first note on a stage, I was still a twinkle in my father’s eye…or something along those lines. With this, it seemed odd to be seeing the band now that I’m in my adult years. Even more odd was seeing how relevant the themes of their songs still are in today’s society.Heading out on their third tour since grouping in 1998, the Subhumans had a live album to support and some new songs to display (This Year’s War). The band remains as tight as ever, which is due to Dick (vocals), Phil (bass) and Trotsky’s (drums) involvement with Citizen Fish, but even guitarist Bruce fits in perfectly with the sound. This is something punk from the 70s wasn’t known for.

That’s where the Subhumans have always stood out from the pack. While others had little musical ability and only ranted on teenage angst, Dick’s lyrics seemed more mature and booksmart, while the band seemed like a group of musicians who actually knew what to do with their instruments. This is what always brought me back to this band years after being introduced to them.

Despite being a late show on a Tuesday night, plenty of punkers and interested parties made their way out to Fat Cat’s to see the band reach into its collection of songs for a night of sing-a-long anthems and sobering realizations that we really haven’t made much progress in the world since the early 80s.

While, on the surface, this show was about a band promoting its album and playing music for its fans, underneith was a moment to think and reflect as you sang those words that sat in your mind, but not your thoughts. It was a moment to see think beyond the songs and to scream out with genuine conviction as you sang along with the band…or maybe that was just me. Either way, a night with the Subhumans is one well spent. If they don’t make you think, you may be past the point of salvation.