Uncut’s Worst Gigs!

Today: Queasy listening to Michael Gira's Swans in 1987

Trending Now

In last month’s UNCUT, our writers, friends and favourite musicians reminisced about their favourite gigs.

Well, in this month’s issue we’re looking back on the worst gigs we’ve ever seen – including The Stone Roses, Bob Dylan, Kevin Rowland and David Bowie – with rare photos from the shows too.

We’re also going to publish one of the worst gigs every day, so feast your eyes on this, and be glad you weren’t there!


Town & Country Club, London
14 October 1987


One of those gigs where you’re not entirely sure whether it’s the coolest or the most horrific thing you’ve ever seen. I wasn’t sure at the time and, nearly 20 years on, I’m still not sure. Performances from Michael Gira‘s Swans around the time of “Children Of God” have since gone down in history as arse-quaking noise-fests so intense that people were shitting themselves, vomitting, crying, running for the exits, etc.

Anyone from the Guinness Book Of Records who insists that The Who‘s gig at Charlton’s football ground was the loudest of all time should have been stationed somewhere near the speakers during their set. I tried to convince myself that I was enjoying myself until my liver started vibrating oddly and I started to feel sick. My mate thought I was being soft when I left the moshpit, but then he threw up outside the tube station on the way home. Queasy listening, eh?

Oddly, the rest of the evening was quite pleasant – I seem to remember the support acts were The Dave Howard Singers (you know, “my name is Yon Yonson/I live in Wisconsin/I work in the lumber mill there”) and the Sugarcubes (possibly their first ever UK gig). But Mr Gira and vomit-inducing blow-out has all but erased the memory from my neural paths.


Not even UNCUTs war-weary gig-hounds have been to every show in history – but you lot probably have.

Email Allan_Jones@ipcmedia.com to share your memories, of the ones we’ve published or any which we have missed, and we’ll publish the best in a future issue!


Latest Issue

Bob Dylan, Paul Weller, Marianne Faithfull, Stephen Stills, Spiritualized, Can, The Strokes, Matt Sweeney & Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, James, UB40, My Bloody Valentine, the Plastic Ono Band and Sun Ra