D&V – THE NEAREST DOOR
Equally interesting but in an altogether different way were D&V, who after gracing the stage at the Zig Zag squat gig the previous year had their début 7” EP released on Crass Records. Entitled The Nearest Door, as with most other Crass label releases it was produced by Penny Rimbaud, engineered by Jon Loder, and came wrapped in a black-and-white fold-out sleeve adorned with photomontage artwork by Gee Vaucher.
D&V were just two people, Andrew Leach on drums and Jeff Antcliffe on vocals; hence the name, D&V – drums and vocals. Hailing originally from Sheffield, they had upped sticks and moved to London, bedding down in the large squatter community in Hackney whereupon they had become actively involved in the Anarcho Punk scene.
In a similar fashion to Annie Anxiety and Andy T, they would often appear at gigs as a support act; one moment suddenly being there on stage doing their thing and the next moment gone like an urban guerilla hit-and-run outfit. Though a lot less avant garde than Annie or Andy T, they were still an unusual proposition due to not being a band in the traditional sense.
As shown on Bullshit Detector 1, Penny Rimbaud and Steve Ignorant had at first started out as being just drums and vocals themselves, before adding guitars, additional vocals, art, film and everything else. Penny and Steve's drums and vocals incarnation, however, was but a preamble to fully-fledged Crass whilst D&V were the whole deal. To a point, at least.
Though being developed enough to have their music committed to vinyl, it was obvious that there was a lot more potential for growth in what D&V were creating. In many ways, The Nearest Door was the bare bones of what could be done with just the combination of drums and vocals, particularly when considering what was being done with Rap music in America at that time.
It was embryonic.
Whilst being totally immersed in the Anarcho Punk scene, D&V weren't actually singing about the Bomb, the government, animal rights or anything of the like either but instead were looking inwards at themselves: “Life's what you make of it, lay back or get up and go. What you want and where you go, only you will ever know.”
It was the stuff of thoughts and feelings. Or as Shakespeare put it, such stuff that dreams are made on...