interview 2011.

2011By ?

This is an interview with Vic from this year. Source unknown. If you know, let us know! (click contact at the top)

Do you think that Subway Sect gets fair mention in the history books?


Why is Alternative TV frequently mentioned in the same breath as Subway Sect?

We probably exerted a big infuence on them,and I wrote the first line of one of their tracks called How much longer?

What is the history behind the name “Subway Sect”?

The name came about as we intended to practice in the Hammersmith Subway on the way to our first public performance.

Did you initially meet Bernie Rhodes at the 100 club? How did Subway Sect come to be managed by Bernie Rhodes? Why did Rhodes sack the band except for you just as the debut album was to be released?

No we met him in the run up to the gig at rehearsal rehearsals in Camden and after the 100 club he offered us some support gigs for the Clash which we accepted.Not entirely sure but maybe he could control one person easier than four.

Are the rumours true that the master tapes of the original LP were ruined in a flood? How was the decision made to re-record this album in 2007 with a partially different band? There are parties that believe that Bernie may have a copy of the original masters. Do you subscribe to this theory?

Not sure but now that 1978NOW has been done it no longer matters to me personally,and if he has them I will never get to hear them so I've lost the interest I once had. We decided when Mark Laff was in the group to do the album just to have all the sect set from '78 on one album.

You have often been cited as being too ahead of your time. Do you suppose if your timing was different you could have been a household name?

No and my timing wouldn't have been different.I always try to think of things that will endure so that they are not locked in a particular time slot.Also some things come back again and again with each generation intervening.

What propelled your reasoning to leave the music business and become a postman?

To get clear of all the bullshit emanating from Camden.

Are you an avid record collector? Do you seek out new music or find yourself diving back into history?

No but I used to be in the seventies although I was never that into most rock and most of my records are easy listening still, although I was converted to the Fall by a work mate [Anthony ] at Christmas 2011.

Were you influenced by early American Acts (Velvet Underground, Stooges, MC5, New York Dolls, Richard Hell, and Television) or the British Pub rock bands like Dr.Feelgood?

All the above except the Stooges who were a bit too heavy for me, also had barely heard MC5.

If it wasn’t for Malcolm McLaren could it be said that Subway Sect wouldn’t have made it out of the starting gate?

Yes but we might have been creative in other ways than music.

What music influenced you at an early age?

The Kinks, The Rolling Stones, Adam Faith,Georgie Fame and a hatred of the Beatles, Pacemakers et al, although I didn't mind Freddie Garretty as he made me laugh.

Some of my favourite bands start out not knowing how to play or they have no knowledge of composition i.e. Television.

How would you see yourself or the different variations of Subway Sect evolving? From a tadpole to frog so to speak?

Ha Ha. We have a lot of new stuff to evolve with, but are being held up with looking for a bass player so ours can come off the drums and get back to what he was doing before our drummer retired with back issues.

What process do you follow to write songs i.e.: lyrics first, music second?

I do both and never know what will come first on any track.

Where are the ideas for your lyrics derived from? Has your subject matter changed over the years?

My lyrics come into my head and are from all sources-books,records newspapers,and the subjects are unlimited as the more you limit yourself the tougher it gets.I don't think the style has changed but I should be getting better by now as I should be wiser.Also when we were on the dole in the seventies we had no work ethic,so were lazy.Since Thatcher fucked the country we are all like automatons now.

Is there an era of music that you have not tackled that would interest you in exploring?

Yes definitely its the Edwardian Music Hall era of Marie Lloyd et al.

Could it be said that Subway Sect are an anti rock and roll band? True punk in a sense and or the original indie band?

We aim to be anti rock in everything we do but don't succeed musically - the other stuff we do well. I think the origin of Indie rests more with The Fall than us as we are still unknown to a lot of Indie people (except Scotland) Punks don't think we're punk but we don't think they are either.

Out of the many fallen punk comrades whom do miss the most and consider the most influential if any?

Johnny Thunders and Sid of course

How would you like to be remembered?

With a good laugh.

What are your future plans musically?

Trying to get group permanent and doing some more recording and continuing to play in new territories

Would you consider playing North America?

Yes but possibly with group already there.

Parting words or thoughts?

Thanks for the interest and good luck.