ALL PROFIT GOES TOWARDS KEEPING DIY SPACE FOR LONDON OPEN.
The London bus is as an integral part of London's cultural fabric and self-mythos as punk itself, its blocky silhouette as much a feature of its historical iconography as the ripped strips across the eyes of our dear monarch, from the routemasters now repurposed into moveable stag-dos to the tuberous ill-thought-out lumps of Boris's skeuomorphic mimicries with just a brief detour into Ken's wide-swinging ophidian bendy buses in between.
Of course, Punk and buses have crossed paths before, in Ian Dury's Busman's Prayer (Our Father, who art in Hendon/Harrow Be Thy Name), streetpunks Bucha Effect's homage to their beloved 345 to Peckham, jaunty power-pop jangle of Thin Yoghurts' Girl on the Bus or reaching further afield even Doug Mulray being a dickhead on the peak-hour bus in punk pastiche classic I'm a Punk, but rarely have these two things been smashed together with such violence and purpose.
The rumble and hiss of London's 8000 strong armada of big red bastards underpins the grotty primal hardcore punk of TOP DECK, from the triumphant joy of riding high in Theme From Top Deck, freed from the day to day for a moment, to the existential anguish of choppy punk Curtailments "TO KEEP THE BUSES RUNNING, EVERYONE SUFFERS", positing a system fueled by the collective despair and frustration of the millions of souls ferried back and forth each day.
One Seven Six Six Six runs tumbling through a handful of routes, each evoking a particular feel and memory for a frequent crosser of London, from the straight-and-simple diagonally bisecting Old Kent Road legend of the 453 to the peculiar twisting backstreets of the C10. The Fucking Bus plods like a nightbus drunk and the whole thing culminates in the demonic lounge-jazz explosion of Adrian Atkins, taking painfully vituperative aim at all the moaning pricks that make every customer service person's life a living hell. TOP DECK rages with the full force of the Peckham Terminator.
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