As punk-art-rock originators Deaf School announce a return to the city, Getintothis’ Paul Fitzgerald looks at the gig’s significance, the monumental influence of the band, and the dying days of their host venue.
In just a few short months, we’ll be stumbling, reluctantly headlong, into the loss of yet another fine Liverpool live music venue, as the end of the year brings about the much discussed end of The Kazimier. And so it goes. It’s a sure thing though. The wheel will keep turning, as it always has. Many other venues have fallen away over the years, and, importantly, many more will come.
But right here in the now of it all, we should focus on The Kaz, and the massive contribution it has made in these past few years, to the city’s musical culture and history.
And so, it is a fitting venue that sees the return to these streets of the originators, the innovators, influencers and experimenters, and first time Eric’s regulars (they played the opening night), Deaf School for a last hurrah with a gig that sold out in an unprecedentedly short time. Signed, almost accidentally, to Warner Bros in 1976 by ex-Beatles’ publicist Derek Taylor, this raggedly brilliant and brilliantly ragged musical co-operative formed in art school in 1973, released three albums in as many years before splitting in 1978.
Despite that split, they have continued to record, including no fewer than three Peel Sessions, and in May 2015 released their tenth album LAUNDERETTE. The album includes five songs recorded live in New Brighton in November 2014 alongside new material.
This splendid and noble art punk gang have been cited as major influences by acts such as Madness (Suggs liked the band so much, he married one of the singers, Betty Bright), Dexy’s Mignight Runners and Morrissey. Indeed, they continue to inspire and influence a clutch of newer bands.
As with venues in the city, we continue, into the future, to learn from our rich and glorious history. As author Paul Du Noyer put it, “In the whole history of Liverpool music, two bands matter most: one is the Beatles and the other is Deaf School” and, if only in terms of influence, he certainly has a point.
And so, as the clock ticks through the year’s final days, and the bulldozers gather around Wolstenholme Square, this most fitting of gigs, already a sell-out, will see us gather to celebrate this remarkable venue, this remarkable band, and yes, of course…..What A Way To End It All.
Deaf School play The Kazimier on December 10.
On the back of, unsurprisingly, massive demand for this event a second date has been added for December 9. Now there really are no excuses.