“I don't give a shit about the Diamond Jubilee or any of the nationalistic patriotic bullshit that goes with it, but I'm not as feverishly anti-monarchist as I used to be.”
With Britain marking the Queen’s 60th anniversary celebrations this weekend with an extended four day public holiday packed with street parties and pageantry, Skrufff asked a bunch of English nightlife characters what the Diamond Jubilee means to them. London acid techno legend/ punk provocateur Chris Liberator was surprisingly empathetic . . .
Skrufff (Jonty Skrufff); What do you think of the royal family generally?
Chris Liberator: “Nowadays they are a soft target really, they’re just being used ostensibly to unite a nation far more ready to riot than party in the street. Do they wield any real power? Not anymore, but they are used as a distraction so we forget who really is profiting and cashing in on the nation's image. And don’t forget the royals still cost us a fortune.
As for the Queen, I feel sorry for her, to be honest. In her own way she's quite an amazing woman really, just like the millions of her subjects whose lives have been squandered in wars and nationalistic endeavours, her life is not hers to lead. She is expected to do her duty for god and country i.e. bring in tourist dollars and shut up.”
Skrufff: What will you be doing over the Jubilee weekend?
Chris Liberator: “Our punk band Dogshite will be playing at an anti-Jubilee squat punk festival on Saturday night in London organised by Reknaw. Other than that I'll be away from the celebrations DJing Friday in Sweden and Sunday in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire ,and hoping in the chaos of street parties that there'll be some other techno parties throughout the weekend that will be going off under the radar through until Wednesday.”
Skrufff: What do you think about Prince Charles- and Prince Harry ever becoming King?
Chris Liberator: “Media fodder, the saga of the royals is better than (TV soap) Eastenders ever was. Will they become king? Will the Queen relinquish the throne? Who will they marry or divorce? Who cares, its irrelevant and so are they.”
Skrufff: What do you think about the campaign for the Pistols God Save The Queen to become number 1?
Chris Liberator: “It already was number 1 in 1977, except it wasn't officially because the powers that be decided it couldn't be so they kept it at number 2 and banned it on the radio. Punk rock really did threaten the fabric of society back then, but this time round it would be a laugh, not much more than that.
The Sex Pistols (much as I love them) are almost as much of a British institution as the Queen these days, and being number one doesn't have the same impact these days with t'internet an’ all. The record still sounds as powerfully vitriolic as ever though, but really doesn’t have the power to shock like it did in 1977.”
Skrufff: How much did punk mean to you during the Silver Jubilee?
Chris Liberator: “Punk rock changed my life irrevocably. I was at that prime age of 12 years old and it blew my mind, got me really thinking socially and politically, and it was so exciting musically, I'd never heard anything like it, was the best thing that ever happened
Skrufff: What does punk mean to you today?
Chris Liberator: “It is still my favourite music of all time, I love it more than techno and that is saying something. Of course it's had its shit times, but recently bands like King Blues (r.i.p), Skints, Random Hand, Inner Terrestrials and dozens more have reminded me how great and challenging this music can be, especially in todays climate of musical shallowness.
Punk rock is social protest, anger, and always challenging the status quo via music. Because by its very nature it's anti-fashion (in its purest form) it has an integrity that rarely exists in other styles of popular music that still rely on image and vacuous attitude to make an impact. We sampled Henry Rollins in a recent acid techno track and I still regard Acid Techno as the punk rock of electronic music.
Hagar the Womb (my old punk band from late eighties) are playing again and we've got an anti- Olympic record by my other current punk band Dogshite coming out soon so I’m drifting back to my punk roots (laughing).”
Skrufff: Anything else to add?
Chris Liberator: “Sod the Jubilee, what about the travesty of the Olympics, a gigantic corporate scam devised by property tycoons to massively increase their wealth at our expense, all in the name of sport. It’s the most corrupt abuse of public money in our time, and puts the Jubilee to shame.
I've seen the disused Olympic shells across the world in my travels; this is a horrendous waste of public money in a time of severe recession. It's a travesty, believe me, we will be paying for it for years.
And I might add, I played at a squat part in a disused sports centre in Stratford, (East London) about a year before the Olympics was announced, do you think we need more sports centres in East London for chrissakes? How about affordable housing...I could go on . . .”
Jonty Skrufff : http://listn.to/JontySkrufff
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