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It was 1986 and I was at Swansea University pretending to study anthropology when my housemate and punk rock comrade Dan announced he was going to a gig in Cardiff by a band called Culture Shock. Dan and I had got pretty close what with going out cycling, organizing gigs, fly posting, causing the local McDonalds as much trouble as we dared, hunt sabbing and doing an anarchist paper called Black Sheep. So I was wondering who the fuck this band was but didn’t ask it as I was planning something more comfortable for the evening. Later I realised that Dan’s omission to explain who Culture Shock were was pure meanness on his part, he knew that The Subhuman’s The Day the Country Died was one of the tapes that rarely went far from my cassette deck. When he got back late that night exhilarated by another successful train fare dodge with the Shrapnel lads from Briton Ferry he confessed that Culture Shock was the new band of Dick (Lucas) of the Subhumans. I tried not too look too hurt and was so relieved to hear that Culture Shock weren’t a punk band but a ska band! Ha! What a disappointment that was gonna be! images of Two Tone, and men in suits with brass instruments came to mind. How wrong I was. it wasn’t long before we had the band down at the Student Union Mandela Bar for a Hunt Sab benefit gig notable that night for a useless PA which Dick struggled through with his usual wit and enthusiasm. Culture Shock had for that time a unique sound, a mash of ska rhythm; reggae beat with punk vocals and attitude. They were so good and the PA so bad that night that we brought them back a month later to do it better for another benefit.

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