The story of Newcastle's Alernative Scene in the 1980s is presented in categories: Locations, Clubs, People and Bands.
Newcastle was a grim place in the 1980s. Unemployment was high. Culture was low. The town centre was deserted on weekday nights and if you did venture out, you had to watch yourself because the quiet streets made it more dangerous, particularly if you had a look that wasn't to everybody's taste… there will be always be knackers looking for a fight but conditions were more in their favour back then, allowing them to operate in anonymity.
There were areas of desolation around the town, which was obvious in the neglect of buildings at the edges of town. You can see examples in the Newcastle Locations section that include Manors Station and the Quayside. NEWCASTLE LOCATIONS: click here
From nowhere it seemed, although probably following on from punk, an alternative club scene developed that didn't impose dress codes to send you scuttling home. Suddenly we had places where it felt good to be dressed up and you could meet people you liked the look of; enjoy the music that you already liked and discover some more. These were exciting and liberating nights. To read about Mr Ms and A Packet of Cornflakes at Tiffanys, the various nights at Rockshots and host of others see NEWCASTLE ALTERNATIVE CLUBS IN THE 80S: click here
I've created the Facebook group 'Newcastle's alternative scene in the 1980s' and loaded more than 80 photos I took of people who were around at the time. There are pictures from parties, various flats, a free gig on Eldon Green and a fashion show at Riverside. Click on the red links to join the Facebook group and see the full set. FACEBOOK PAGE Newcastle's alternative scene in the 1980s
The Monoconics, were active from 1979-80. They were from Sunderlandand released one single, recorded a John Peel session and played a number of gigs including an appearance at the prestigious London ICA Rock Week in 1980. Read an interview with their singer, Denny Pooley. MONOCONICS: click here
Said Liquidator are the first band to be featured on ESN Records. July 2011 sees the release of their 'Anthology 1987-1991' on our label. Listen to their music, watch videos, read about their 33 songs, 139 gigs, 19 members, 44 rejection letters etc and do please consider buying their CD from this website or Amazon. SAID LIQUIDATOR: click here
ON ESN RECORDS:
I can't think of a Newcastle band that was of great significance on the alternative scene in the 1980s. It was the club scene at the centre of the movement and that was based around records but I think there was always a hope that somebody would break through and the possible emergence of a local band was always a conversation point. Nothing ever seemed to happen though! The only bands that broke out of Newcastle in the 80s were those on Kitchenware - Prefab Sprout, Kane Gang, Daintees and Hurrah. (I'd be keen to add to it if you have any photos I can publish.) To see photos of various NEWCASTLE BANDS click here
Newcastle pages on this site:
Go to home page: click here