Selfish C**t - Jabez Clegg - 19.5.05

A couple of days ago, the nutter that was Max Carlish made a name for all the wrong reasons on "Stalking Pete Doherty". It was the sort of rabid obsession of Jill Dando proportions. What Carlish would make of Martin Tomlinson of Selfish C**t remains to be seen, but you'd imagine he'd be obsessed with this charming and disarming character who grew up in Blackburn, moved to art school in London, but left as it was too conservative and safe for his own radical vision.

The moment Tomlinson hits the stage, it's a confrontation. The barrier is kicked down defiantly and it's marks the start of a 45 minute offensive. Fighting against weapons of mass distraction on an international level and locally the happy slapping chavs who attack batty boys like himself. He's not so much an eloquent George Galloway charmer as a rabid maniacal preacher man.

It's difficult to hear the message of a Selfish C**t live show. It's all about the spectacle with no division between the stage and the audience. Guitar riffs come across as a back to basics Stooges or Ramones, drums clatter away seemingly randomly and Tomlinson rambles incoherently about CNN and the swarm of immigrants in a satirical way of how the media is quick to blame easy targets rather than those people who are truly responsible. Several songs were played off "No Wicked Heart Shall Prosper", but we're not sure as it all rolls into one spellbinding set. The token newie "Batty Boy" is dedicated to all the black men in East London. The lyric goes "C'mon bring your wife along and lets have some fun". It's the most blatantly commercial and uncommercial track the band have done to date.

Like performance art collective Minty, Selfish C**t are about a train of thought rather than the actual music. The fact that they released one album was a statement in itself. The fact that a second album is on the way should cement their musical legacy

Alex McCann

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