Before Blink 182, even before Green Day, there was Snuff.
Formed in 1986two years before Green DaySnuff
were even at that early date already busy breathing new life
into a punk tradition whose corpse had barely grown cold.
With Green Day filling stadiums in Japan, there is clearly
a strong market for Snuff's brand of neo-punk here. For
this reason, Snuff have been accorded three Tokyo area dates,
giving fans plenty of opportunity for stage diving in small,
When singer/guitarist Duncan Redmonds formed the band, however,
the last thing on his mind was a punk revival. When
Snuff first started we did move away from the remnants of
the late '70s and early to mid-'80s UK punk scene
because we considered it stale and attracting too many undesirables,
he told punk website Aversion.com. One aim was to put
some melody back into a scene full of grunters and shouters.
With a take-the-piss attitude and pop sensibility that owed
more to the Buzzcocks than the Sex Pistols, Snuff debuted
with Snuff Said... on Silo in 1989. The album featured a comically
up-tempo, thrash version of Jimi Hendrix's Purple
Haze, showing thatfor Snuffnothing is sacred.
Further emphasizing the comic nature of the band, they added
a trombone player for their next release, Flibbiddydibbiddydob,
an album of covers of rock classics and commercial jingles.
The album would be re-released in 1996 when Snuff signed with
America's Fat Wreck Chords neo-punk imprint.
In 1992, a time when the UK rave explosion was getting in
full swing, the group realized it was time to stop flogging
the dead horse, and disbanded to pursue separate projects.
But during their hiatus, something was brewing in California.
In the UK, I don't think things have been the same
since the acid house/techno thing exploded, commented
Redmonds. A lot of people disappeared into this scene.
It seems this didn't happen in the US.
During the mid-'90s in the US, the rave scene was in
fact in the process of establishing itself. But it remainedand
continues to remaina relatively underground phenomenon.
But when Green Day capped the 1994 Woodstock concert with
a climactic performance, and along with Rancid and Offspring
sold tens of millions of albums, it was clear that the time
was ripe for a reunion of the English band that many of their
US neo-punk brethren hailed as a major influence.
The reunion came about in 1995 with Snuff's signing to
Fat Wreck, quickly followed by the release of their comeback
album, 1996's Demmamussabebonk. Since then, the band
have issued a number of releases that have received mixed
reviews, including a live album issued by Vinyl Japan, and
most recently, Blue Gravy: Phase 9.
Yet, notwithstanding having set the template for comic pop
punk, Snuff's Redmond also emphasizes the band's
serious nature. Normally people see us as a jokey, light-hearted
band because we do silly covers and don't always take thing
seriously. So quite often out of a set of 20 songs people
only remember the one jokey cover we have done and forget
the 19 serious songs.
Snuff play Club Quattro on January
22-23 and Yokohama Bay Hall on January 26. See listings for