If you’re sensitive to coarse language, love the monarchy and think former Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, was always “doing his best”, then look away now and visit this website www.theconservatives.info instead, because what follows is not for you.
The mercury has barely broken through the zero degrees mark for a week in London and while much of the snow and ice has cleared on the busy Camden pavements, fresh frost is now setting in as I almost skid over on my approach to this most beloved and legendary of north London independent music venues. Thankfully, once inside, it doesn’t take long to warm up as the backroom is absolutely rammed for The Kunts Khristmas Party – in fact, I dare say this will be the warmest many of us will feel as we anxiously worry about the cost of switching on the heating over the course of our winter of discontent 2022.
However, tonight we leave our woes at the door because there’s a band of merry men in the house to offer some much needed comical relief. As they weave their way through the crowd to reach the stage they are greeted like returning heroes with much cheering and applause before diving into a song about being a touring musician, ‘A Lonely Wank In A Travelodge’. Yep, they’re one of those bands, like a punk Bad News but with more songs about masturbation than you can shake a dildo at. No one is safe from becoming the subject of a Kunts song – political figures, disgraced pop stars and even members of the royal family. The Kunts appear before us, it seems, purely to entertain and give us a laugh. Frontman, Kunt, is instantly likeable with eyes wide and a boyish charm, resplendent with gold-toothed grin. Apparently, he’s got a touch of the sniffles tonight but he’s jovial and sways along happily to his well-constructed songs peppered with more swears than the hollering of a five-year-old who’s just been taught all the naughty words by an older sibling.
Kunt points to a bearded man at the front of the audience and jests, “He could have the dismembered body of a prostitute in the boot of his car” before the band break into ‘Men With Beards (What Are They Hiding?)’, the lyrics of which point out that men who hide their face behind fuzz aren’t to be trusted, such as serial killers Peter Sutcliffe and Harold Shipman. There’s a delightful line that namechecks Scroobius Pip and Kunt admits confusion over not being able to tell a Muslim extremist from a Hoxton twat. Bearded bassist, Rubber Jonny, looks a little concerned as Kunt playfully throws him inquisitive glances.
Kunt announces that the band have continued to play ‘God Save The Queen’s C*nt’ out of respect for the deceased Queen. One can only hope there will be a plethora of amusing tracks to come from The Kunts about her successor, but for now we have to satiate ourselves with the ode to Lizzie’s number two son. “What two words come to mind when you think of Prince Andrew?”, enquires Kunt. If you were at a fancy dinner party I dare say your answer might not be the two words which Kunt now telepathically jams into our brains as we blurt out in unison, “sweaty nonce!”. While it seemed most of the country was excitedly planning street parties and pinning up union flag bunting during the summer – whilst angrily condemning those who refused to join in the celebration – The Kunts were on the campaign trail. Their wonderfully satirical single, ‘Prince Andrew Is A Sweaty Nonce‘, reached No.20 in the UK Singles Chart and No.1 in the Independent Singles Chart during the week of the Platinum Jubilee. Tonight the song presents an opportunity for the crowd to vent their frustrations at the unjust reality that the elite can simply buy their way out of facing up to the abhorrent crimes of which they stand accused – or, as in Andrew’s case, have their mum do it for them.
‘Wanking Over A Pornographic Polaroid Of An Ex-Girlfriend Who Died’ is not a sexy song, Kunt assures us, as he fumbles with his zipper and umm… let’s just say I’m not sure if I’m relieved or disappointed that my view is blocked by the crowd. Perhaps if Jim Morrison had revealed a pink faux penis dangling from his fly as he yelled “You wanna see my cock?” at a Miami concert in 1969 there might have been a genuine reason for the outrage and his subsequent arrest.
As an ex-Lostprophets fan, my personal highlight of the set is ‘The Wrong Ian Watkins‘. The highly amusing lyrics tell the tale of Kunt’s friend Paul who confuses pop singer Ian ‘H’ Watkins from Steps with former Lostprophets’ frontman and convicted paedophile, Ian Watkins. Originally an acoustic track with a passing nod to The Proclaimers and released by Kunt And The Gang, tonight’s rendition is rocked-up with full band participation and the crowd’s interaction is reminiscent of Toy Dolls’ ‘Nellie The Elephant‘.
Like many, I only became aware of The Kunts two years ago when they attempted to gatecrash the singles charts in Christmas 2020 with their fitting tribute to the dangerously incompetent Prime Minister, ‘Boris Johnson Is A Fucking C*nt‘. It’s been a long time since I’ve paid any attention to the singles chart and not since I was a little kid did I care about what song sold enough copies to snuffle the highly coveted Christmas No.1 spot. Tonight we have a moment to scream along with Kunt before the band roll out their Christmas 2021 contender, the KLF/The Timelords-inspired, ‘Boris Johnson Is Still A Fucking C*nt‘, only now the song has had former Health Secretary and current reality TV star, Matt Hancock’s name injected in place of the ex-PM. As Kunt says, “Just don’t let anyone forget he’s a [Tory] c*nt and let him be a showbiz c*nt”. The Kunts may not have reached the heady heights of chart domination upon which they set their sights but both singles did get to No.5 without the help of a glitzy media campaign and with zero backing from the mainstream press. A feat which is not to be sniffed at.
The band can’t be bothered with squeezing their way through the crowd to the dressing room, only to come back a few minutes later to play an encore – the room is so densely packed it makes no sense to even try. Kunt states he’d play the encore songs even if there were only one person left in the room but no one is going anywhere just yet. Kunt reminds us, as if we needed it, that the band’s latest attempt at wrestling the Christmas No.1 spot away from the usual glut of mundane and/or sentimental tat – and in particular “the sausage roll grifter”, aka LadBaby – is released at midnight. After twelve awful years of a horribly malevolent and corrupt Conservative government we need ‘Fuck The Tories‘ to be Christmas No.1 like we need NHS nurses to be respected and given a decent pay rise.
Throughout tonight’s performance, Kunt boasts the in-between-song banter of a stand-up comedian and the band brandish songs that cause football terrace sing-along mayhem. The interaction between band and audience is off the scale with smiles and laughter galore. There’s a real down to earth vibe emanating from the stage and Kunt spends a considerable amount of time post-performance chatting with fans and posing for photos. It’s a great night and who knows, maybe The Kunts will even save Christmas for us – after all, as the mighty Art Brut once sang, “If we can’t change the world, let’s at least get the charts right”.
Set list: A Lonely Wank In A Travelodge / That’s Why I Voted Brexit / Men With Beards (What Are They Hiding?) / Use My Arsehole As A C*nt / God Save The Queen’s C*nt / Bangers And Mash / Prince Andrew Is A Sweaty Nonce / Paul Stephenson’s Party / Gentleman’s Wash / Wanking Over A Pornographic Polaroid Of An Ex-Girlfriend Who Died / The Wrong Ian Watkins / Boris Johnson Is A Fucking C*nt / Matt Hancock Is Still A Fucking C*nt / Jesus Died Of A Stranglewank / Nobody Spunks Up A C*nt Anymore / Fuck The Tories / Fucksticks / Paper Boy
Download and stream The Kunts’ ‘Fuck The Tories’ single and re-mixes from 16th to 22nd December and help catapult them to the Christmas No.1 spot – visit their website for details. You can also follow the band on Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / TikTok and discover more of their music on Bandcamp.
Review by Mandy Bang @mandybang
Photos by Mark Dans L’Espace @mark_danslespace
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