Encrypted: psychedelic nights at the Deptford Crypt


Encrypted

This part is a bit about my involvement with The Crypt in Deptford. Although my memories are hazy I hope that it might spur others to write about their memories of this underground wild psychedelic club in the 1980s in the Crypt St Paul’s Church Deptford.St.Paul’s Church Deptford
(photo from Church website http://www.paulsdeptford.org.uk)

There were other nights run there including a gay night where I performed as Astragone Arglegargle. That experience and others involving The Crypt’s promoter and Club Dog would run into another few pages, also there were reggae sound systems and acid house music at a later date, but I will focus on just the 80s psychedelic club in this bit of writing.
The main band I went to see there was The Ozric Tentacles however some of the other bands included the following ( many of them start with “The” in their name!)
The Stone Roses, The Magic Mushroom Band, Treatment, The TV Personalities, The Invisible Band , The Cardiacs, Space Pirates, Wooden Baby, Nukli, and many many more……

thecryptdeptford.jpgPhoto from www.televisionpersonalities.co.uk

My first trip to the The Crypt must was around 1985 and was probably due to going to see my friends in the band “Treatment”. Through running gigs at Dead Dog promotions and playing in bands meant we were finding other people from the psychedelic scene in London or they were finding us.
For example I was in a band with Michael and some good friends (“Instant Istigkeit” you will never have heard of us, we only ever played at a couple of festivals), when we went up to Stonehenge in 1984. We played on a stage run by the Magic Mushroom band and we were supported by Dr and the Medics. Two of the girls in Dr. and the Medics hung out at our camp and told us how they had just got a manager and would soon be part of the music biz. I think it was through them that we got to know Christian and The Alice in Wonderland crew at Gossip’s in Soho. At a festival in Cambridge we met Rory from the Invisible Band who was running a stage and we played there. At the Norwich festival we met more London hippies doing interesting things and kept bumping into the same crowd. Since the Magic Mushroom Band and the others all played at the Crypt this was the link.
The guy who ran the club who I will call ” Kev” for legal reasons ( although his real name was Andy) was not a hippie at all .He was an ex-policeman and an entrepreneur who used his links with the local police to create a psychedelic club where you could get stoned all night and drink all night and know that you definitely would never get busted for either.
The Crypt was in the basement of St Paul’s church in Deptford. It’s still there now although no longer used as a club and the church website makes no mention of its history.
If you didn’t live in Deptford or in the area and didn’t have a car it was a very difficult place to travel to and back from. The club threw people out at around 4 a.m. or if you were lucky 6 a.m. and the first buses and trains did not start until 6.a.m.. There were night buses but only one every two hours or so, it was a question of having a car , hitching or begging a lift off someone home.
When the place was not full of punters before a show you could see it for what it really was.The place was a damp , mildewy, run down place with dirty walls and dirty floor and a dodgy loo without doors . But with the dope smoke , the fantastic lightshows, the colourlful drugged up crowd dancing like maniacs, and of course the amazing music , it became a magical place. There were very few public places in London you could smoke dope safely. All the hippies were cynical about the ex-copper but I never knew the place to get busted although maybe it did at a later date.
Since I was not living in South London in the eighties it was usually the trek there and back I remembered the most, like trying to find Shangri-La except unlike the Himalayas you could get mugged and the views weren’t as good( older hippies will understand the Shangri-La and “Lost Horizon” references).

A Night of Psychedelic Adventures circa 1986?

At that time the days of my every day life were quite mundane as a full-time single mum and socialising with other local parents living in Harlesden who had no connection with the psychedelic scene.
However I’ve always enjoyed a double life…
I think it might have been Halloween in 1986, I had the evening and night off.
I knew this biker couple called Jenny (a scouser) and Cedar ( not their real names). It’s so funny now because I thought Jenny was really much older than me at the time because she was thirty, I think Cedar was 25 the same as me.
Jenny and Cedar were bikers, they were an attractive couple and always dressed from head to toe in leather.
We planned( on the spur of the moment!) to go to The Marquee Club in Wardour Street to see The Cardiacs. I was going to try to get us in for free because they had seen me many times at Club Dog . We didn’t have much money on us but we went down there anyway. There were huge queues to get in to the place in Wardour Street and it sold out. We soon realised we wouldn’t get in as the place was exceeding the new fire regulations!
We decided to go to a pub nearby called “The Ship” just a couple of doors down. We went in there and at the bar next us I saw Lemmy. He was wearing a Motorhead Ace of Spades T-shirt and well..it was Lemmy!
I had seen Lemmy many times as he liked to walk up and down Portobello Road most Saturdays loudly in his boots when Michael and I used to run a stall there in the late 70s early 80s.Lemmy used to hang out in Notting Hill with a regular groups of bikers/headbangers who I knew vaguely but I’d never actually met Lemmy .
He was very famous at this time but I thought it was a safe bet to chat to him.
So while we were all lined up at the bar I nudged Jenny and whispered “Look who it is, we should say hello”, she nudged Cedar and in a macho blokey way Cedar took over the proceedings and talked to Lemmy while kind of keeping me and Jenny at bay.
Anyway we shook hands and eventually we went to sit down with him. He asked us all what we wanted to drink and bought us each a round and then he asked us what fags we smoked and he gave us each our favourite fags, for me it was rolling tobacco and rizzlas and he went out of his way to get some for me as there was none in the pub, but then he went to sit at another table and left us to it..
We sat there for a while and I suggested we should go to The Crypt because I knew the guy running it . I had performed at the Crypt as Astragone Arglegarle and Kev had messed me around over bookings and he knew he owed me a favour . So after that he always let me in for free ( you have to understand we had virtually no money on us).I knew the Ozrics were playing there as they’d told me.
But around that time the Ozrics told me something really weird….I had said to them that I’d seen them billed to be playing in 2 different venues in London on the same night. It might have been that night actually. Either Joie or Ed had told me they had 2 bands to cope with the amount of gigs they were doing. They had so many fans who wanted to play with them that they recruited people to play in 2 different Ozric Tentacles so the line up was different but then they could do two gigs in different places if necessary. In both bands there were some original members, actually now the members change at different gigs.
So anyway we were talking about this with Lemmy in the background at the next table waving to us from time to time…when this German guy started to talk to us . He was from Munich and very very tall and good looking he was also a musician. He said ” Do you know who just bought you drinks?” I said “Yes” and he joined us and said he would come with us to the Crypt although he didn’t have any money either! He sat with us and we talked and drank before leaving waving goodbye to Lemmy on the way out.
Anyway the funniest thing happened when we left the pub. You have to bear in mind that we chatted to Lemmy for about half an hour and told him how we liked his music etc…
Anyway as we left the pub Jenny said to me.
” Wow wasn’t that amazing meeting Ozzie!”
I told them them it wasn’t Ozzie Osbourne but Lemmy and they wouldn’t believe me at first and I kept saying ” But it was! He was even wearing a Motorhead t-shirt!” The German guy knew but not the bikers who spent most of their waking hours listening to Black Sabbath , AC/DC and Motorhead.
That was classic spending 30 minutes talking to Lemmy and them thinking it was Ozzie.
We set off for Deptford. We were trying to explain to the German guy that London was a very big place and that it might take us an hour or two to get there but he wouldn’t believe us. I remember showing him the A to Z to show him how big it was and him saying he knew every street in Munich how could I not know every street in London!
Anyway another thing I am very embarassed about on our journey there, this is not something I would do normally! We had no money and were a bit drunk and I was following what the others were doing. At Oxford Circus tube we jumped the barrier and then on our way to Deptford we got off at a station and Cedar started kicking a chocolate vending machine with great strength after losing his money when trying to buy a bar of chocolate…to our surprise all the money came out. I’m sure we frightened the life out of the other commuters waiting on the platform then we did this with other chocolate vending machines on the way. I can’t say I am proud of this however in the 80s if you were waiting for a train and tried to buy chocolate nine times out of ten the machine would eat your money and refuse to give you chocolate . I’d lost a few pounds before in those rip-off vending machines so had everyone else, in fact I think some commuters cheered when they saw what we were doing.
I was the only one who knew the way to the Crypt vaguely , I think I got us lost but we got there in the end. Kev let me in free but the others had to pay half price.

The Ozrics were playing and the vibe was amazing. All these girls were on stage and dancing with them, this had never happened at Club Dog. Some people I knew were doing the lightshow, the place was packed solid and everyone was doing mad psychedelic dancing and bumping into eachother under the strobes. Not all the original Ozrics were there but Joie was there and Rollie , Ed’s brother who played bass. Sadly he died at a later date but I don’t know what happened. The crowd were going mental and it was a young crowd of new hippies and I realised that night their career was going to take off . Before that they’d had a big following but it was more traveller and crusty types, now they had pretty young girls with beautiful hippie clothes dancing on stage with them.
I was all dressed up in some kind of hippie/goth evening dress that night and danced like a lunatic but not long after we arrived Jenny and Cedar and the German guy decided to go home to catch the last tube. I didn’t didn’t want to go..it was the middle of the bloody gig, we’d only been there for half an hour. So I stayed. As I sobered up I realised I would have to find a way home because the Crypt finished at 4 in the morning and although there were buses somewhere, they only ran once every two hours. I wasn’t prepared to hang around the streets of Deptford on my own waiting for a bus all night in the freezing cold…I didn’t feel safe.
Anyway I kept dancing and at the end of the gig I asked anyone I vaguely knew if they could give me a lift to Trafalgar Square where there would be night buses back home. No one I knew could help me as they lived in South London.
In the end I asked Joie who was packing up. He said I could come to his squat in south London but it would be crowded. I said it didn’t matter if I could make some tea and hang out there until 6 am. when the tubes started it would do me.
He drove to his place in Clapham and I met his new girlfriend from another psychedelic band. He told me that things had started to get stressful with a bit of fame and how these girls were beginning to get on stage with them. I’d assumed that they knew these girls and that they were part of the act but they weren’t, they just jumped on stage with them and made themselves look like they were with the band. I hung out at their place until the tubes started again. What a weird night!
( Erpland live at the Fridge, Brixton, May 19th 1991..)

Picture of Chill Out /Dogs in Space Tent Solfest 2007 thanks to Mike Cupcakedogsinspacetentsolfest1.jpg

All those years ago and so much water under the bridge but if you were part of that scene it was so special it stays with you forever. I had a very special time at Solfest this year and saw and met so many musicians I used to know and respect and recently seeing some my friends from Treatment and making new friends on myspace and at “Born to Go” a new psychedelic club in Hitchin. I am now meeting people I didn’t know from the same scene.
Anyway if anyone out there would like to write their memories or be interviewed for this blog please let me know.

Midweek expect a short blog and next Monday more stories of hippie counter culture/psychedelic music and/or my political ranting. Love and Peace.Born2rant!

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56 Comments

  1. Wow, what a trip down memory lane! I used to go to the Crypt every Friday night and used to go out with the lead singer of Freaks of Science. I remember the DJ, Gus The Grovey Freak Creator who we used to pester to allow us to sit in his little DJ room! I remember The Purple People Easters, as we were their groupies for a while. I also remember Andy the policeman who ran the place and the vicar who used to come downstairs to join us! I have very very happy memories of that place!

  2. Hello Jo
    Thanks so much for your comment. It’s great to hear from you. I don’t know the bands you mentioned as I only know what I know and I am learning every day with this blog. I hope to learn more soon !
    Love and Peace
    Born2rant

  3. I’d like to say that I remember the nights in the Crypt, but it’s all a bit of a blur. I used to play guitar with the Magic Mushroom Band and I am positive that we played there many times but what with all the ‘legalised’ smoking, the overenthusiastic fans who added extras to the drinks and the ‘not going on till 2 in the morning’ I can’t be more certain than that.

    I do remember the Freaks of Science, they were on the Crypt “Stoned Out of Their Heads” tour of mostly empty leisure centres and had a couple of singers who we used to watch from the side of the stage.

    I can heartily recommend Born To Go in Hitchin as a new and exciting venue. Myself and Jim from the Mushroom Band played our last gig in Peyote Mothership there (December 1st) and it was a blast – great lights and a lovely atmosphere – pretty much the way it used to be.

    Very interesting to read this blog I’ll be keeping an eye on it, if there’s anything I can add, no doubt I’ll jump in.

    If anyone is interested, there are some old piccies of the Mushroom Band on myspace and a very rare video on youtube.

    Keep the faith

    Craig

  4. Hello Craig

    Thanks so much for leaving your comment and for getting in touch.
    Thanks to Damian from Wigan I was already directed to your youtube vid. I was also at Born2go and I have probably bumped into you many times at Club Dog, Stonehenge etc…
    My blog might be a bit deliberately contentious at times so you may not always agree with me but I assure you that it’s great to hear from you.
    Love and Peace
    Born2rant

  5. If my memory serves me ( and those years are mainly a blurred collection of images) one night i saw the Trogs at the Crypt. I had my dog, Jade, with me – yea i know dogs ears are sensitive etc, but i did have her with me, and somehow she ended up on the stage while the Trogs were playing Wild Thing.
    Other memories are surfacing here … i’ll try and remember more!

  6. Hello Ema

    Thanks so much for making contact and for sharing your memories. I know it was a long time ago and some of us were a bit “out of it” at the time just to make it harder to remember!
    So you saw The Troggs that’s great. I thought for a moment maybe you meant the other Crypt in Notting Hill in the sixties. But I looked on ” Pooter’s Psychedelic Shack ” (see links) and they mention a Troggs gig on November 1st 1985 at The Crypt in Deptford so maybe it was that one.
    Please do share anything else you can so we can keep our alternative history alive through this site.
    Love and Peace

    Born2rant

  7. Hello

    Funny how fast the world is shrinking and things apparantly lost on times far horizons are brought into back into focus. Never thought I’d be readin of the Deptford Crypts Psychedelic shenanigans over me coffee n toast of a sunday mornin, any how enough babblin …

    I used to run the lite show at the crypt after Wizz and Suzie Creamcheese left we (myself, Blakey and ‘Pixy’ Dave, who is now to my everlasting wonderment and joy an astro physicist, blimey) were aptly called headlights.

    I was also the singer songwriter of ‘The Freaks of Science’ band mentioned by Jo we did our own lightshow, hence doin crypts, and where popular enough to secure a regular once a month residency at el crypto and i was fortunate for a while to b able to book the support acts on that night and also take on the artwork for the advertising of the club on behalf of ‘Dave’.

    A wonderful club that i bet many a formative moment was shared, did we meet in the in the queue to mens toilet (it wasnt there for the bog) who knows. The place was a psychedelic haven, before the rave scene brought drug takin to the fore of policing in clubs, i always wondered tho never asked if Dave being ex police had anything to do with the often blatent drug taking I mean, where could you see ‘cool’ looking retro hippies wigging out bang next to men of the cloth often talking to some young tripped out head while bands like Treatment (one of my faves) melted thru the lights into intra-space…’Kin Brilliant!!!! Oops gotta stop writing now im burning sunday lunch will post you more and see if i can dig out some archive material oh shite I’m gonna have to do battle with da peeple in the loft!

    Cheers for makin my mornin see you soon

    Neli x

  8. Hello Neli

    This is a very delayed reply. Thanks so much for your comment and your email etc…
    Thanks for your contribution and stay in touch. It’s really great to hear your stories and everyone who comes to this site will also enjoy sharing it. Cheers!
    Happy Easter
    (* I keep wanting to write Happy Eater)
    Love and Peace

    Born2rant

  9. Thanks Jo and Birdman for sending me a link to this blog. I still have my Crypt badge lovingly framed somewhere. Memories are mostly of people – Gus, Jeff, The Wizard and of course the Birdman (love ya man). I fell in love, got trashed, did graffitti and heard the best music in my life at the Crypt. The most memorable occasions include catching Jo and Birdman “sunbathing” under the street lamp in the graveyard, (seriously) and asking Andy if he’d pay me and Jo for getting everyone dancing week in week out. Cheeky eh? The Groovy Freak Creators debuted their fist pop video at the Crypt, and old bands like the Pink Faeries got to play the tiniest of venues for an enraptured audience. The gents was a peaceful place, while the ladies was a den of iniquity. Luckily, we were safe dancing, tripping and ordering Gus to play more Hendrix. Swoon.

  10. Thanks for your comment Natasha. It’s great to collect so many memories.
    I’ve been offline mostly recently but people still coming to visit the blog.
    Love and Peace
    Born2rant

  11. Excellent stuff, I’ve lifted some of your info for a wider post on the history of that place – apparently there was punk, reggae and acid house too! See:http://transpont.blogspot.com/2008/05/more-tales-from-crypt.html

  12. i remember the glitter band playing mdmaalso(the name meant nothing to me at the time ozric tentacles & loads of others i’ve unfortunately forgotten.Great venue & great tmes.

  13. A full on ‘trip’ down memory lane that was. Yes I was there nearlyevery Friday from abiut 1984.If anyone remembers me I was the guy in teh red guardsmans jacketand stripey bell bottoms.

    A few bands to help you remember……..

    Voodoo Child, Freaks of science – (How is Dave by the way?), Pink Fairies, Ozric Tentacles, And who could forget Geno Washingtons gigs down there?

    a true speakeasy and I often wonder if there is any where the same left in the capital. I remember leaving the place tripping on Mushies and acid and walking off to Greenwich park to watch the sunrise with my other pals. Anyone remember Rob (Tall guy) and Graham who knocked out whizz in the graveyard?

    The place was truly Far out and groovy man!

  14. Hello There Captain Baz
    a much delayed response to you comment. Thanks for your contribution. Oh yes I do remember seeing Voodoo Child a few times including at the Marquee. The Ozric Tentacles were friends of ours and I can’t quite remember if I saw the freaks of Science or if they played at Club Dog or not…it’s a familiar name.
    The Pink Fairies hung out in Notting hill ..can’t remember the Gino Washintons..but then I was living in North West London..
    Thanks so much for adding those names , maybe someone else will remember something.
    Love and peace
    Born2rant

  15. Hi Captain Baz

    Have you got any old photos from the Crypt days? We’ve set up a Crypt site on facebook. I would probably recognise you if I saw your photo. I remember Rob really well as he’d usually come back to our place in Pimlico afterwards along with Jeff (Jeff used to get regular paranoia attacks), Neli (Birdman), Natty, Gus and Dave the pixie. I remember one night, Nat and I decided to be the backing dancers for The Freaks of Science and I was standing behind Ben, the guiarist who suddenly had a little puke (he was nervous) but carried on playing as if nothing had happened. I remember our magical mystery tour of the Grave yard and I do remember sunbathing with Neli in the middle of winter under a street lamp. We were out of it! I also remember the night we got into the back of a cab, the cab driver stopped after a few minutes, got out and some random got in and started driving. We were all freaking out when he turned round and said “bet you don’t think this is really happening to you”.

    Anyway, enough of my ramblings. Neli is looking into having a reunion at the Crypt and we’re just checking to see if this is possible so keep your eyes on the facebook site!
    Jo

  16. Hello Jo
    I’m not Captain Baz!
    But hopefully he’ll read this comment anyway.
    It’s great to hear your stories and to see you are putting up a site of Facebook. I divorced Facebook some time ago as people kept sending me bat’s blood, cartoons of willies or wanting me to play scrabble but i’m sure other people who are on Facebook will be interested.
    I don’t have any photos , I was too busy dancing.
    Keep those anecdotes coming.
    Love and Peace
    Born2rant

  17. Hi Boys and Girls, yet another Crypt Casualty, we used to frequent most Fridays for a few years travelling up from Sidcup and somehow getting home in one piece. I’m amazed to this day we never got arrested or mugged whilst waiting for the last night bus to take us home at least as far as Eltham then an adventure walk back to Sidcup. We used to sprawl all over the pavement in New Cross in some kind of Tripped Out mess smoking dope and trying not to draw attention to ourselves.. LOL in fact doing quite the opposite.

    The Freaks always made us Grin from ear to ear and put a spring in our step, (Ghosts and Goblins and Gouls and ooohhhhh..:-) )Treatment another Fav, we used to visit the Robey as well but much prefered the relaxed atmosphere at the Crypt, Geno Washington was excellent and made me rush out to find a secondhand LP wish I still had it. Yep Magic Mushroom Band, The Ozrics, but for me my all time favourite Crypt nights where when Webcore played, they used to press the right buttons and really manage to make my head wobble. Who else.. The Groundhogs did a good set, Voodoo Child always delivered, Purple Peaple eaters I thought was a bit of a Freaks ripoff the list goes on.

    Does anyone remember the Crypt Pink Fairies Christening party round the corner at St Marks Deptford with the wonderful Grizeldas, Nodins ictus, Voodoo Child, The Freaks are on the Flyer but I don’t remember seeing them.. Microdots kinda make the memory fuzzy.. anyway that was good night out, spent most of it downstairs. I remember it having a low ceiling and swirling projections from top to bottom, you know the kind that make you feel like you’re going to fall over when you try to walk.. or perhaps that was just the ‘sid….

    Sorry I’m starting to ramble, I’ve stil got some flyers and related stuff if anyones interested…

    I’ll leave you with one last thought

    Horses Running Backwards… 🙂

    Take Care All and thanks for the trip down memory lane.

    Love Trampy.

  18. Hello Trampy
    Thanks for your contribution i’m sure lots of people will be interested in your tales.
    Don’t worry about rambling, rambling is GOOD!

    Love and peace
    Born2rant

  19. Double Dips and Ayinger Beer , lethal .

    Then someone started to mess with the lights !

    Ah! Club Dog . Half my life ago !

  20. Hey,

    Im in a band called The Cracked with a chap called Jean-paul and a chap called Stardust.We did indeed frequent the club Boomshanka at the crypt on Sat nights which i belive was in 1988-89…… There were no bands playing then , just amazing DJ’s ,who influenced a lot of what we play now as a band…..myspace.com/thecracked

    In fact we have just recorded a song of ours called ‘Boonshanka’ . You can check it on our my space if you have the space…….

    Long live memories of peace and havin it large !!!!

    Ian T

  21. ahh yes… happy daze… i… remember it well… well… sort of… mac the punk… cheap suit oroonies… earthnicht… porij… grob…always Grob… crypt… blue house… ambulance station… fire station… deptford i think… a bus station… a railway siding in reading…alices’ with the toilet roll bunting… and look… grob… again… with flyers…for treatment, ring and panixsphere… for the invisible band who played all night… for the cardiacs… daises… parachutes… monkey pilot… the hope & anchor with its deathtrap basement… the libyan embassy… a hippie with a vial of adrenaline from the basement… ‘anyone know how you do this..? ‘ there was a girl with a ring that had a dragon motif… ‘this must be yours…’ thunderdogs… ullulators… ed… joey… and… hi grob – long time no see… people painted… black lights and oil swirls… i saw her play a violin, kicking the dust from a stubble field… she had run from the bean field and she moved me to tears… torpedo town…elephant fayre… nearly here back then… the flat roofs of kennigton… we are all in this together…

    Miquest, Webcore.

    • I moved my mate into the Libyan Embassy as I had an old yellow Post Office van got a photo of him with Gadaffys portrait in the background.The party even got announced on local tv.I help move the generator in for the sound system.

      • Hello Simon
        That’s a great story. Have you put that photo up online or have you published this story somewhere? If so send us a link please. If you are genuine, and I hope you will forgive my cynicism due to the nature of the internet, you really must get it written down or recorded and published somewhere in some form in print or online. These alternative histories need to be told, the stories of squatters and rebels, some of whom became famous in forming our recent culture and others who died too young.
        Love and Peace
        Born2rant

  22. hello guys, just discovered this weblog. I am the italian dj that used to play records at the crypt on friday night between 1987-89 I believe. . I remember Gus and my friend Andy but sometimes i am not sure that that fantastic period of my life is really happened…Anyone that still remember me just to confirm me that it was true?.. Love and peace. Stef

  23. what an increible trip!

  24. hi i’m stef the italian dj of the crypt between 1987-89 I think… my memories of that period are a bit confused…I still remember Gus and Andy (the boss) . Does anyone remember me? (just to know that it was true..) I am back in Italy now and I have not been in touch with anybody there for a long time. Love and peace. Stef

    • I remeber you as a d j at the crypt, i asked you to play barratt and you said you had put him to bed for the night-still upset about that.
      -Space the man with the golden face.

      • Sorry about that…I was probably flying high…hard to remember..but i used to play often “No good tryng” or “No man’s land”.. ciao Stef

  25. Amazed and pleased to read these comments. As memories of The Crypt are vague it makes you wonder whether you actually were there, to lift a reference about the 60s.
    It must have been 89 and me 23 when I used to go there and I think it also shut shop around about this year? Or at least closed for a time.
    Gotta be the weirdest club I’ve ever been! strangely found this site as I was surfing and wondering if there are any similar happenings in London now.
    Remember being very confused as to which loo to use, extatic that they sold Sam Smiths straight from the wood, got my straight girlfriend stoned there and thinking that Deptford High Street was like something out of the Thriller video (so I am told) …….. completely empty except for strange Goths and hippies emerging from side alleys and heading for the grave yard.
    Oh to turn back time for a night.
    Only really remember Bernie Torme’ and the Electric Gypsies playing there and Nic Turner (Inner City Unit ????).
    Dave L x

  26. Hello
    Dave L

    Thanks so much for your comment and I really appreciate your contribution. Sorry I’ve been away .
    Love and Peace
    Born2rant

    Ah yes Sam Smiths!

  27. Thanks also to Miquest from Webcore and dj Stef ( and anonymous).
    Sorry I haven’t been maintaining my blog but thanks for getting in touch and for sharing your memories.

    One day might get back in touch with you all to write up the whole history…after all why should history belong to wars and politicians?

    Love and Peace
    Born2rantXXXX

  28. hi all, what a blast from the past this blog is. Spent many a fantastic friday night at the crypt from 86 to 89 ish with a bunch of folk from the isle of sheppey. I remember Gus well and gave him a lift home occaisionally…although can’t remember where to for obvious reasons! Only problem with the crypt was we had to wait until 6am for a train home in the freezing cold, but with a lot of people in the same boat waiting on the church steps, conversations got weirder and weirder…fantastic, rarely laughed as much.

    Band wise, the ozrics had to be the highlight and voodoo child, the garage punk nights were fantastic.

    Anyone remember a band play a gig in scary masks or was that just my altered perception?

    Sheppey Paul

    • Hello There Paul

      Thanks for your stories. Yes the distance from everywhere else was an issue. I once had the scariest lift ever back home from a friend who was very drunk and who got involved in a car race on the way back.There wasn’t much in the way of night buses.
      Still it was a fantastic place. I’d been to other “illegal” clubs in Brixton but they were very very dodgy places, this place was fun, cosy and on the psychedelic evenings there was a friendly atmosphere.
      Love and Peace
      Born2rant

  29. most of this sounds very familiar as do several of the people who have already commented. Natasha and jo, gus John, dave the pixie, etc. Great fun, good acid, and mainly the ozrics, but the freaks of science, and all the others were cool too. Fortunately for me, I was always able to drive home (or to somebody’s home at any rate) afterwards despite being utterly shitfaced.

  30. I wrote a comment here last night and it appears to have been deleted. That seems a bit harsh … Anyway I’ll try again. Like many others I remember many of the bands and names already mentioned, and especially the partaking of you know what. Nat and Jo I remember of course, and Rachel and various others. The people from Malt St, Brixton, Pimlico. I could tell a few stories here, but I fear they will get deleted.

    One specific night I remember Gus acompanied myself Rachel and a few others back to clapham common in an effort to keep the party going. I’ll leave it at that. In case some prefer to remain anonymous.

    I think the earlier commenters have already covered most of it. The bands, the wandering in and out, the tripping, the awful efforts to get ‘home’ afterwards. Even though I drove most of the time.

    Who played again?
    Ozrics, Magic mushroom band, freaks of science, and wasn’t it renamed ‘the storm’ a bit later. Some hendrixy type band that were quite good who’s name I can’t remember, and who also played at alice in wonderland.

    I remember the lead singer from Dr and the medics showing up at the crypt one night also. although i don’t remember them playing there.

    I also remember seeing Andy the promoter over at the acid daze thing in finsbury park in 89 so he must have been into the music a bit anyway.

    I think towards the end of 89 i started going to club dog instead as it was a bit nearer to where i lived. Also a good psychedelic night out, but a pit too packed I always thought.

    Will this get deleted again I wonder … You’ve got to be careful what you say round here apparently.

    • Hi Tony, I’ve only just seen your post! What a blast from the past! I’d really love to hear from you. Are you on facebook? If so, I set up a group “The Crypt” and Nat, John Kneller and I are on that! I saw Rachel a couple of years ago in Camberwell. Would really love to hear what you’re up to and where you are living. I remember our nights at The Hungry Years in Brighton! xx

      • Did I see that you saw Rachel? From Birmingham? How was she doing? We were old housemates from Magickal Malt Street. Can’t find the fb page though. Do you have a link?

      • I remember the dog on the stage with The Trogs. Brilliant memories. My mates band played there several times ( Phoney American Accents ). With Rhe Leather Nun, Magic Mushroom Band, Ozric Tentacles, Graham and the Mushrooms. Some of the best nights of my life, high on acid trying to cope with Deptford High Streets violence and crime afterwards was surreal.
        Anyone remember buying acid from a geezer in a suit with a briefcase full of blotters. He had a chain with a camping cutlery set around his neck.
        Richard

  31. Hello again Tony

    I think you might be feeling a bit squiffy! I HAVE just done a bit of editing!
    Sometimes I tidy up and edit out some comments and my posts retrospectively, as this blog is my personal hobbie of ranting in cyberspace, not an impartial institution or anything. I have had to edit out comments in the past either because they were from total fascists pretending to be politically correct about “lazy” hippies (their term) or because they were from people revealing my identity online or just because they were spam comments like ” 8&&uuunght” .I will now remove a couple of your extra comments.
    Just to say once again, thanks a lot for your contribution, I wasn’t trying to censor you but I am often not online for long stretches because I find life far far far more rewarding and empowering away from the computer, the internet and TV although I am very fond of both of them when I do stuff in the real world my self-esteem grows, when I sit around watching TV or going online for long stretches I get depressed! Plus I just have important things to do which means I don’t have the spare time to go online to approve comments, also some comments ( about 80% of them mostly adverts for pills or pornography) are automatically sent to the spam bin by WordPress and are deleted.
    Occasionally I delete my own posts on a whim, after they have been up for a while, which means that the associated comments are also automatically deleted.
    So maybe when people send me a comment think of it as sending a letter to “The Times”. You may not necessarily be published, you might go straight into the bin, if you write something valid it will get added on but only when the editor is not away on important business!
    Also to all of you out there… whenever you post a comment on any blog it gives them the number of your computer and often your personal email address. Therefore if you want to be truly anonymous use a public computer. On my blog you don’t have to worry about this but you might want to think about it if you are putting a comment on the blog of the police force.
    By writing this blog I do put myself at some personal risk but hope that this country is still free enough for me not to be arrested.
    Love and Peace

    Born2rant

  32. Hello all!

    Andy Moore the promoter of The Crypt here! Nice to see so many people commenting on fond memories of the old club.

    I was thinking about doing one a Crypt Reunion, what do you all think?

    I would have to find some of the old bands mind you, anyone with any information?

    Feel free to contact me by e-mail at immortalis_mors@hotmail.com.

    Psychedelically yours,

    Andy Roo.

  33. Hi is there still anybody out-there?I would love to go to a Crypt re-union.I remember it very fondly and occasionally(less and less)bump into people who were there.I guess I am just sad but I feel the need for nostalgia at this point in my life and be prepared to do it properly and thumb a lift from where I now live in France.Don’t know as I would be prepared to do one of those enourmous tabs of acid though.Does a nyone tremember the guy I think he was called Stig who sold his(?)acid there?He used to have”eat shit and die tatooed on his forehead,Or did I imagine it.Chris stumultan@yahoo.com. THE PAST IS A FORIEGN COUNTRY.

    • Hello Chris
      thanks for the comment, sorry about the delay . I only update this blog from time to time. I just wanted to say to everyone please think carefully before putting up your personal details on this blog and before meeting up with anyone, you may be meeting up with MI5 or other crazy people.
      Love and Peace
      Born2rant

  34. Yes loads of us out here! Just go to The Crypt page on facebook at this address : https://www.facebook.com/groups/2538301020/?fref=ts Personally, I’d love to go to a Crypt re-union! http://www.facebook.com/starshipoverflow

  35. we used to train it down to the crypt from near Cambridge when we were teenagers, it was a wonderful other world, nightbus back to Trafalgar square with extremely altered consciousnesses! I am very surprised that we didnt get into trouble.As far as i recall upstairs was the bands (Ozrics, Magic mushroom Band and The Pink fairies ) and downstairs was chillout and cushions. It is all very hazy but probly had an effect on my mental development.

  36. There was no upstairs only a crypt, not a huge one either, certainly nothing fancy like cushions. Maybe you were thinking of a different venue? Upstairs was the Church and we had no access to it.Yes the journeys back from the Crypt were always interesting, I never got a night bus back, but usually managed to get a lift to Trafalgar Square to get a night bus, or ended up in a variety of squats in different parts of London. Love and Peace
    Born2rant

  37. Aah yes i think the pink fairies gig may have been where the cushions were and saw other bands instead at the crypt but as i say hazy memories……..

    • Hello again
      The thing is there was at least one other Crypt. If you look through this blog you’ll see there was another Crypt in the 60 and 70s at a Methodist Church in the urban wasteland that was Notting Hill. This is where bands such as Hawkwind, Pink Floyd, The Pink Fairies, Gong, Quintessence, AMM,The People Band played to early psychedelic shows and with other weird art and film happening going on.
      Love and Peace
      Born2rant

      • The place we went was definitely in deptford, maybe 5 or so times or so, not regulars as such, but young spongelike teenagers, and saw the Fairies in deptford perhaps at St Marks 1987? 60s and 70s was a little before my time!
        peace and love back!

  38. Loved the way all sorts were side by side with a common interest..the term gay bikers on acid seems to fit lol

    • Yes the band “Thatcher on Acid” used to play at Club Dog and probably the crypt. But never saw gay bikers on acid, the band, but definitely there were gay and non-gay , or rather free-to-be-sexual-in-any-way-they-particularly-felt-like-without-labels bikers on acid.
      Love and Peace
      Born2rant

  39. I loved the place we used to travel there from carshalton is there anywhere like it?

  40. Another Crypt casualty from 87-89ish. Moved from Scotland and ended up living in Brockley and The Crypt was the very first club I’d been to .Remember The Magic Mushroom Band, Purple People Eaters,Loop and Dumpy’s Rusty Nuts all playing in there and also skinning up while talking to the vicar and the DJ used to play Cpt Beefheart.Ahh the memories.

  41. We went there a few times in 87/88/89 up from Camberly, Surrey. Perhaps remember seeing voodoo child, mm band, nik turner, here and now there… crazy place as a 17/18 year old, the toilets full of freaks and smoke. still into all that music now….can someone tell me more about voodoo child?..saw them a few times i think, wardour street marquee, some hawkwind gigs…my mate had their album, always liked the song rain…and they did a great version of fire. did daevid allen ever play there, perhaps the crypt was all over by the time he made his late 80s come back?…

  42. Here is clip of the pre- Purple People Eaters playing live at the crypt in Dec 1985. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kOfQp3jc3Eo


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