French Punk Rock Bands

Punk Rock Bands from France

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Skrewdriver was a punk rock/RAC group founded in 1977 by Ian Stuart Donaldson in Blackpool, England. At first, with the first line-up, the group was not politicized, and although they had a violent attitude, they confined themselves to playing a classic from the early days of English punk rock. After his dissolution in 1979, Ian Stuart decided to reform him in 1982 and completely change his formation.

The group' attitude had changed, the new Skrewdriver openly declared to sympathize with right-wing extremist organisations, they also changed style by deepening their rock matrix and coming to right-wing extremist thoughts. Note that Skrewdriver, contrary to what some people believe, didn't consider himself an Oi! tape, and apart from some musical episodes ("Boots and braces" and the second version of "Antisocial" in Primis) were quite far from the attitude and musical canon of Oi!

Stuart was part of a Rolling Stones covering group called Tumbling Dice (like the band's famous song) and founded Skrewdriver after seeing Sex Pistols in Manchester. The original line-up (all from Blackpool) was: The concerts in Blackpool were small and after the concerts in Stanley Park (the story is told in (Too much) Confusion onto All Screwed Up) they got even smaller.

After sending a band to Roger Armstrong of Chiswick Records, they were signed and moved to London. They dated You're So Dumb/Better Off Crazy ("7") in 1977. At that time they managed to play regularly in London (Roxy, Music Machine, Vortex etc.). After the release of the single Antisocial/19th Nervous Breakdown (7") in 1977 Phil Walmsley left the group and was replaced by Ron.

Also in the same year is the first Lp All Screwed Up, always on Chiswick Records. The continuing violence at the concerts and the presence of followers of the National Front and the British movement aggravated the situation. The press began to equate the name Skrewdriver with fans of the National Front.

Jimmy Pursey's Sham 69er accepted, while the Skrewdrivers didn't want to compromise. In mid-1978, when the group had no more opportunity to play around (all performances were banned) and no record contract, they disbanded, left London and returned to Blackpool. He returned to London, where he lived for three months in Suggsy's mother's house (Suggsy had been a Skrewdriver roadie), but after two years he became the Madness singer.

He left London to live near the city of manchester, where he reformed the Skrewdrivers. The new line-up was: They could play regularly in the region of New York and sign a contract with TJM Records (a small local label). In autumn 1981 Ian returned to London and settled at the Ferndale Hotel (he knew the owner of the hotel, an NF sympathizer) in the Kings Cross area.

He started to visit the "Last Resort" (record and clothing store), whose owners were Mickey French and Margaret. These contacts enabled Ian to reform the Skrewdrivers. The new formation was: Frenchy and Williams both came from another group, the elite. The Mickey French (of the Last Resort Shop) helped Ian reform the group and contributed to the creation of Back With a Bang!

After the remarkable success of this 12" Mickey suggested to the Skrewdrivers to participate with two tracks in the United Skins collection (also produced by Last Resort Shop). Also in 1982, Ian began to talk about the idea of creating a right-wing music circle: Rock Against Communism (abbreviated as RAC). At that time their liveset already contained White Power and the I. R. A.. smoke.

In the summer of 1982, at one of the many concerts at the 100 Club, there was a dispute between the supporters of Skrewdriver and the supporters of Infa Riot (a group that made a name for itself at the Rock Against Racism concerts). The first R.A.C. concert took place in 1982 in Stratford, East London: Skrewdrivers were headliners.

At the same time as the release of the EP of the Omaltinees (1983) White Power (7") was born. Released on White Noise Records (first right), formed with the help of the National Front. Produced by Mark Sutherland and mixed in his East London atelier. In autumn 1983 Voice of Britain ("7") was released, again on White Noise Records, and they took part in This is White Noise!

Geoff, Frenchy and Neeson left the group in early 1984. The new formation consisted of: Skrewdriver signs a contract with Rock-O-Rama Records and Print Invasion (7") with this line-up. Between 1984 and 1985 the R.A.C. scene grew a bit thanks to the Skrewdrivers all over Europe and new groups emerged.

Skrewdriver, Brutal Attack, Slow Death, Public Enemy. With this training you record 2 tracks for No Surrender. In autumn 1985 they recorded Blood & Honour LP (which will be released in December 1985), on this record the second guitar of Paul Swain (ex 4 Skins) is played. The single in question was never released and the two tracks were used for No Surrender Vol. 2, an 1986 release (in synergy between Rock-O-Rama Records and White Noise Records).

From 1987 the group continued to change formation. In 1988 Martin Cross (Brutal Attack) was in the line-up which recorded 3 tracks for Gods of War (compilation) and After the Fire (LP). In 1990 Stigger joined the group and recorded The Strong Survive (LP, probably the least successful recording of their entire discography).

Registered 1992 Freedom What Freedom (LP). Between 1989 and 1992, Ian performed many parallel projects with Skrewdriver (Klansmen, White Diamond, Ian Stuart & Stigger) and several solo projects (No Turn Back, LP and Patriot, LP). The Skrewdrivers ended in 1993 with the death of Ian Stuart in a car accident.

The notes on the CD are by Ken McLellan (singer of Brutal Attack). The RaHoWa covers of Skrewdriver's song When The Boat Comes In is the main song of the white video game Ethnic Clean.

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