You Fat Bastard!

CUD, Sheffield Leadmill, July/August 1991

"YOU FAT bastard! You fat bastard!", chants a seam-bursting Leadmlll, appropriating the infamous Carter slogan for a not entirely unearned greeting to singer Carl Puttnam. Bearing a striking resemblance to that guy on 'Stars in Their Eyes' doing Mick Hucknall, Carl models a shirt emblazoned with the legend 'Carl Cud - Sex God'. Some thinking of the seriously 'wishful' variety has obviously been going on here.

From the moment Carl announces' We are the Cud band', and then trounces through a version of 'Hey Boots', with more spirit than a haunted distillery, the stage diving department books in for some serious overtime. Standing towards the back, there seem to be some people who spent the entire gig standing on their heads - if not someone else's - legs swaying above the frenzied mob like reeds in a stormy lake. Bouncers flick them from the stage as casually as skimming a pebble across a pond.

'Love in a Hollow Tree', while straying alarmingly close to The Farmers Boys at times, is inflated by guitars squealing like Bonnie Langford with her foot trapped in an escalator, and ably supported by tub thumping from that skin helmsman. Carl's vocals, deep and erm, manly, though not particularly 'singerley' are robust enough to deliver a top tune without spilling it. Coupling sharp, wry lyrics (tinged with a respectable dose of insight), with hair-swining tunes with sweat-friendly danceability. Cud are a band as rare as sunstroke victims in a British Summer. With a foot on the dancefloor, and a hand in the joke book, Cud are the real thing. A POP group that you can laugh with, and not just at. AND one that you can hurl yourself off stages to.

Jonny Thatcher