According to Richard Jobson, “The Skids were not just another punk band. There was always something creatively ambitious about the band as well as being close to the core beliefs of their hardcore fans!” The Skids were different, had considerable style, imagination and elan and made so many great records between 1978 and their demise in 1981.Formed in 1977 in Dunfermline, Scotland, they released an independent single that got played by John Peel, they supported The Clash and were signed to Virgin Records in 1978. The first singles were ‘Sweet Suburbia’, ‘The Saints Are Coming’ and ‘Into The Valley’ – the latter reaching the UK Top 10 in early 1979 and Richard’s high kicking dance remains one of the great TOTP moments and had thousands of young punks trying to emulate his moves in front of their mirrors.
More hits followed with the likes of ‘Masquerade’ and ‘Working For The Yankee Dollar’ and in all The Skids made four cracking albums ‘Scared to Dance’, ‘Days in Europe’, ‘The Absolute Game’ and finally ‘Joy’ in 1981 before splitting up. Stuart Adamson leaving to have considerable worldwide success with Big Country, whilst Richard went on to form Armoury Show, which was like an alternative supergroup that featured Richard and Russell from The Skids and John McGeoch and John Doyle from Magazine.
The Skids reformed very briefly in 2007 to play T In The Park but it was not until 2017 that the band embarked on a highly successful 40th Anniversary Tour covering the length and breadth of the UK and Ireland and a highly acclaimed appearance at Rebellion Festival. A fifth studio album ‘Burning Ashes’ in 2018 and during the extended lockdown in 2020/2021 the band did a superb covers album ‘Themes from a Haunted Ballroom’ that included some of the bands favourite tracks and major influences. Features covers by the likes of Magazine, Ultravox, The Adverts and Stooges as well one or two nice surprises.
The Armoury Show played the Futurama 5 in Leads in 1983 on the Sunday behind Death Cult and headliners Killing Joke. The Skids while they never played the Futuramas, could easily have done so as their sound and style always had that inventive post punk aesthetic as well as their rabble-rousing songs. As Richard Jobson says himself ‘Don’t overthink it, just do it, enjoy every minute of it and play every gig as if it’s your last” The Skids live shows are passionate and life affirming and they make a fantastic addition to the Futurama.