The Others took on one of Britain’s most venerable institutions last night (February 25) by staging a guerrilla gig against the advice of the establishment.
The political rockers had been due to play a special concert at the V&A museum as part of the Agitate! Educate! Organise! exhibition but organisers decided to pull the plug at the last minute because of overcrowding fears.
Typically The Others decided to turn up anyway with their army of hardcore fans – the 853 Stagediving Division – to perform their own gig on the steps outside the South Kensington museum.
However the band’s online announcements ahead of the gig alerted organisers who shut down the whole building in anticipation of their arrival.
Pied piping frontman Dominic Masters had other ideas however, and instead decided to stun tube commuters by performing the gig in the nearby subway of South Kensington station.
During a chaotic 40-minute set, The Others played a series of tracks from their debut album including ‘This Is For The Poor’, ‘Stan Bowles’ and recent single ‘Lackey’ while their fans swamped both the station and the band.
The band got so hemmed in at times that they stopped the gig and ordered the crowd to move back on several occasions.
At one point drummer Martin Oldham even grabbed Masters’ megaphone and screamed: “This is your drummer speaking please move back to the wall otherwise I will die.”
But this only brought further cheers and laughter from their fans who continued to crowd surf and crawl up the wall bars leaving singer Masters to start collecting mobile phones, car keys and train tickets lost during the riotous set.
The band hit further problems when they moved on to perform their second gig of the night at the nearby Polish Club because the management refused to let their fans in and only allowed the group to perform the gig for around 100 people who had arrived at the venue earlier.
Rumours that the Polish president was also in the building resulted in the organisers trying to pull the set on a number of occasions but The Others carried on regardless.
Speaking to NME.COM afterwards Dominic said: “This whole thing was cancelled 48 hours before we were due to play at the V&A and I’m really annoyed because they could have easily coped with the crowd capacity that we were bringing.
“It is not fair to do that to us like that. Most bands would have said, ‘Fuck it let’s not bother’. But we did our own thing and we pulled it off.
As previously reported, the V&A had cancelled the original gig over safety fears issuing the following statement:
“We have been surprised by the incredibly high level of interest in this event. We have been told by our security, health and safety advisers that when the numbers reach this high level for a single event with limited capacity, there is a danger of severe overcrowding and it is extremely difficult to guarantee safety. To avoid any risk to the public or the Museum’s collections, we have therefore taken the decision to cancel the event. We apologise for any disappointment this will cause.”