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Punishment of Luxury – Live on Alright Now

On the 14th of March 1979, Punishment of Luxury performed ‘Puppet Life’ live in the ‘Alright Now’ studio.
The episode also featured an interview with Ian Dury and a performance by Goldie and wasn’t broadcast until later in the year (August ’79)

This was a special day for us and Brian recalls Ian Dury (of the Blockheads) scrambling up the stairs from his dressing room to see us perform. Jimi recalls the volume of echo on the Goldie vocal during the soundcheck while Nev remembers the intensity of a dressing room physical workout preparation and the fine adjustments to the masks and make up.

Nev Luxury

The video shows Punilux with the Ski masks performing on All Right Now and a few people who saw that performance have the following comments 

Keith Newman (Highlights PR):  “As a young teenager, I saw these odd guys in balaclavas singing Puppet Life on TV and I like thousands of other were hooked” 

Their music had weird time signatures” Rob Harland (Big Figure Promotions)

Stephen, Brian, Jimmy and Nev in action circa 1979


This shot was taken outside a studio in London and appeared in a national music paper  

We were considered a special band at that time perhaps because we combined a unique musical approach with dynamic imagery and unusual dance routines with everyone playing a part in the dramatic outcome.

It was during a visit to do some London gigs that we noticed someone selling Ski masks from a card board box in Tottenham Court Road so we jumped out the van and bought some and started to use them immediately when performing.

Performing, dancing  and playing live together required preparation and hard work


50 Walker Terrace in Gateshead was where Neville Atkinson, a musician, singer songwriter and performer met Brian Rapkin, an actor, a singer and songwriter working for Mad Bongo Theatre Group.

They both played and shared ideas and thoughts about imagery and soon the air was filled with songs and electric exhilaration and so it was here that the seed was planted for the band.

A working relationship was developed while touring together in Mad Bongo Theatre Group and they both decided they wanted to explore a new way to combine music and visual performance which led to the bands first song, Puppet Life.

Written By: Punilux

Comment: 1

  • Yanush

    Reply February 13, 20214:17 pm

    I’m absolutely bowled over to see this footage again. Had I got round to it (maybe soon) it would have made it into the second part of musings on my discovering Punishment of Luxury. It would have been interesting to see how my written recollection of it matched the footage. Pretty close to be honest.
    I actually saw this in the school summer holidays of 1979. I’d been at my Grandma’s house and picked up the TVTimes out of boredom. I noticed that one morning the following week, Yorkshire Television (my region) were showing Alright Now and that Punilux were to be featured. Having not long since acquired and become obsessed with The Jellyfish / Engine Of Excess single I made sure that at the appointed time, I was in position in front of the TV (no VCR back then, so the situation, with four siblings, was precarious; luckily I had the room to myself). As others have said, I too was blown away, with the only disappointment being that I sat through the rest of the prog in the hope that there’d be another song, only to find that there wasn’t.
    Shortly thereafter, I made sure to acquire the single. So I’d then heard four Punilux tracks. Loved them all, and made it my business to investigate further.
    Thanks again for putting this up. Invaluable!

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