Gulag (UK Resist #5)

UK Resist’s founder Jake Lagnado confirms what I remember: “UK Resist grew out of a monthly free newsletter of the same name (Which listed gigs and general news and political rants – as much as could be squeezed onto a double sided sheet of A4 paper!). I had also briefly been a columnist for Problem Child zine (1985-7 I think) and that zine inspired me to do something similar… Through the newsletter I built up a good network of contributors and distributors which encouraged me to try something more ambitious with it. My closest collaborator from the outset was Tom Woolford who was king of the design side of the magazine as well as being a contributor. He put out issue 3 and a half when I was out of the country. Another close collaborator Steve Cotton (a.k.a. Steve Throb) put out issue 6, which was the last one. Contributor Ben Stargazer’s bands included ‘Designer Fear’ and ‘Black And Red’; I had met him through the anarcho-punk scene in west London in 1985 when we were 16. There were quite a few others without whom the zine wouldn’t have been possible. It never became the Maximum Rock’n’Roll of the UK as we had hoped, but it was exciting while it lasted and the Lonely Punks Column is much missed I’m told!”.

The zine might’ve been introduced to me by the above-mentioned Steve (who also did Crisispoint zine) – who I met when he was touring with ‘Decadence Within’ in 1990 – or another correspondent of mine: Julia Bleakney (of Belfast’s Warzone collective), who wrote columns for UK Resist. Also Andy Turner (‘Instigators’ singer, Full Circle distro) and Trev (Have A Good Laugh zine) were contributors. I still have the 6 issues they did (except for 3.5). Full downloads are available from Steve’s website Art Of The State. Some very decent interviews (but also some superficial ones), articles on political issues, columns, news, letter-section, reviews, gig/events-guide. Only the ads of bigger non-DIY labels sometimes gave me an itch…

I saw ‘Gulag’ live early 1990 when they were touring and was immediately hooked to their melodic HC/punk. I distributed some of their records and met up with guitarist Kostas when he was studying in Brussels. The guys were from Thessaloniki (in the north of Greece): Alekos ‘Alex’/’George’ Kantartzis (vocals), Konstantinos ‘Kostas’ Apostolidis (guitar), ‘George T. Vampire’ (bass) & Konstantinos ‘Kostas’ Karkalis (drums). My review of the Big Talk 7″: >>Brilliant and melodic stuff. Sensitive music. Personal lyrics. Great!<< and of the In The Showyard LP: >>A pearl. Alot of the songs send shivers down my spine; not just because of the moving, emotional singing but also because of the masterly mystical, melodic guitars and the subtle ornaments.<< Smart people too…

Gulag (UK Resist #5)90-xx-xx Gulag (Europe)‘Gulag’ on tour in (mainland) Europe

This entry was posted in 1991, UK zines and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Gulag (UK Resist #5)

  1. Steve Cotton says:

    Great write-up. I think the importance of zines to punk is under recognised, certainly it doesn’t feature too much in books or documentaries about the time. It’s good to see Jake especially get the credit he deserves for something so ambitious.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.