Sunday, September 13, 2009

Demob: No Room For You

Good Oi! (see here) breaks into your skull and refuses to leave.

I first heard Demob's "No Room For You" on a cheap blue cassette that my departed friend the Curator, made for himself which but enthralled me. The bulk of it was filled by Youth Brigade's Sound and Fury and Sham 69's Angels with Dirty Faces but in the leftover space he threw on this heart-breaking Oi! ballad. Though I had no idea who the band was, the man wrote like a cardiograph machine, I often found myself singing it over the years.

The song's a lament for a lost venue, but as so often happens the specific becomes the universal and we all can relate to an almost wistful bitterness over that which has been lost and can never be regained. This song, along with Demob's entire discography, much of which is more by-the-book UK '82 style hardcore, is available in CD format here.

Formed in Gloucester England, Demob (Terry Elcock (guitar), Johnny Melfah (drums), Mark "Miff" Smith (guitar, vocals) and Paul "Fatty" Price (bass) released only two seven inches in their original lifetime, 1978-1983. Black Punk Time adds,"This street punk group..had a guitarist Terry Elcock and a drummer John Melfah who were both black...John went onto become a famous boxer in the UK while Terry had formed goth group Kiss The Blade." Demob, were known to cause multi-hued riots of their own (shutting down the Gloucester Parade because of fighting between their rabid followers, the Demob Riot Squad, and the local bikers, playing after U2 got booed off the stage etc.) as well as for playing numerous anti-Nazi benefits. The band re-formed in the aughts and, with a new line-up, toured and recorded.

{MRM Readers: leave us a comment with your reaction to "No Room For You".}

Download No Room For You 7"

(If you were alive in the eighties you knew someone who used this record as their blueprint for living.)

Don't miss Punk Friction's post of a live Demob show!


  1. Nuzz
    In the late eighties I used to trade tapes with this very cool woman from Chicago and she threw "No Room For You" on a tape she made for me. On my follow-up tape I countered her UK '82 obscurity with Dead Wretched's "No Hope For Anyone"(which had come right after "No Room For You" on that ancient tape I mentioned in the post). So I was going to post "No Hope..." next but I found one of the guys from DW had asked another blogger to take down the single because they're planing a re-issue They're two great songs that are always connected in my brain.

  2. I always liked Demob - top band. I've still got that Dead Wretched EP as well. Always loved No Justice and No Hope from that one.

    I've got some Demob on video somewhere but its recent stuff (only about half an hours worth) I will try and dig it out sometime.

  3. you're a hero. Longy. Let me know when the Demob goes up, you know I'll link to toute suite!

    If I can find it I'll post that Punk Territory 2 bootleg which (fittingly)
    has both Demob's NRFY and Dead Wretched NHFA.

  4. A friend of mine used to do a punk radio show back in the late '80s/early 90's. Comps like "Punk and Disorderly" great because it meant he only had to a voice break when the side finished.

  5. That's funny!
    In all fairness a lot of these English comps (P & D, UK Decay, There is No Future) pack a lot of punch since a lot of bands of this era (I dunno say One Way System) are strongest in single doses.


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