Giuda @Sugar Factory, Amsterdam 02.05.2016


© Alex Koutsman

Another Monday night gig in Amsterdam –I was off at 6pm, so I met up with some friends at a restaurant/bar called Tripel in the vicinity of the venue. Tripel’s famous for their Monday and Tuesday deals, where you get your second meal for free. Plus, while you’re munching on your steak, burger or veggie quiche you’re hearing MC5, the Dolls, Groovies and the like blasting through the speakers. Not to mention the million different beers they have on offer. We got a bit sauced up and headed to the club around 8pm, as there was no support act and Giuda was on right at 9pm.

Two years ago in a small room in Paradiso, they delivered a tight set, but the 50-odd crowd’s response was a bit lackluster. This time around the folks at the Sugar Factory did a great job downscaling the club from the normal 300capacity down to about 80. Everybody was squeezed between the miniscule stage and the bar. Another cool thing was that apart from the usual punks, skins and herberts there were a bunch of young Italian girls and a few dudes to spice up the atmosphere.

They opened with the anthemic ‘Working Class Man’ from their last album Roll the Balls, and when I say anthemic, that goes for the rest of the set too. Giuda are an unapologetically over the top, fist pumping, sing-a-long rock n roll band. And I dig the hell out of them.  It’s all big rolling beats, monster riffs and catchy choruses. Apart from two or three breaks to thank the crowd and tune their guitars they just plowed on in a non-stop barrage of their best tunes from all of their three albums.  Crowd pleasers like ‘Coming back to You,’ ‘Wild Tiger Woman’ and ‘Number 10’ really got the crowd going. A few covers were thrown into the mix, ‘California Man,’ the Cheap Trick version of the Move’s classic, and a scorching rendition of the Elton John rocker, ‘Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting.’Fuck, Elton use to be cool… Makes me think of that time he invaded the stage at the Stooges gig back in 1973 dressed in a gorilla suit. Freaked the hell out of Iggy, but I digress.

They closed the set with the punk boogie ‘Roll on,’ a song that sounds like a lost gem from a Killed by Death or Boot Power compilation. All in all, the gig left me on such a high that I ended up boozing till two in the morning with a few friends at the legendary blues bar, MaloeMelo. Up at 7.45 the next morning, I zombied off to work with Giuda songs echoing in my mushed up brain.

I just hope that some local promoter can get them to do a weekend gig next time, all things considered.

– Marko Petrovic