Boots -N- Booze Graphic Novel Anthology Volume 1
w/ Johnny Peebucks & The Swingin’g Utters – Live At Ritchie’s New Years Eve Part
Pirates Press Records
I can nerd out on a lot of things, but comic books or graphic novels were never really one of them. Sure, I have a fair share of them in my personal library, but I won’t consider myself a regular reader, let alone a collector, of comics and graphic novels. With that being said, I’ll never say no to a good one, especially when it includes a 45 with some early live material by the Swingin’ Utters! And that is exactly what you are getting with the first issue of Boots -N- Booze’s anthology of graphic novels!
Back in the second half of the 80’s Boots -N-Booze got established as one of the West Coast’s first skinhead fanzines that carried on until the early 90’s. Several issues, that can still be back-ordered or read online three decades later, were made and even more people contributed to these do it yourself publications. Now, nearly 30 years after the last, sixth issue, of Boots -N- Booze, the editors got back together and came up with an autobiographical graphic novel, of which I hope many more will follow!
With fourteen short stories done by ten writers and/or artists, there is some hilarity in this first volume for nearly anyone! Sure, some of the graphics from one artist pop out more than the graphics of another artist, but overall the idea is fairly brilliant and the stories are extremely fun, making you finish up this first issue and its 42 pages in a heartbeat!
As a bonus, the first issue of this newly launched graphic novel includes a really cool 45 of Johnny Peebucks & The Swingin’g Utters with two tracks recorded “Live At Ritchie’s New Years Eve Party”! Conveniently this happens to be the title of the 7” as well and the link with the graphic novel is that this new years eve party actually took place in one of the stories (“New Years Eve Battle Royale”) in Boots -N- Booze!
Now as this party was one of the Swingin’ Utters’ very first shows, a lot of cover songs were involved. According to the comic Cock Sparrer’s “Sunday Stripper” was included (which doesn’t surprise me with the slew of Sparrer covers professionally recorded in the band’s later days), but also Sham 69’s “Tell Us The Truth” and the 4-Skins’ “Sorry” were featured in the – at the time – young band’s setlist. The latter two are featured on this 7” and given the fact that these recordings from 1990 were never intended to be released on vinyl, they sound quite good!
The combination of the graphic novel and the rarity of the recordings on the accompanying 7”, make this a must-read and must-listen for Oi! and punk fans alike! Scoop one up!