philosophy football

Coming to a town near you

If you live in either Leeds or London, we are coming to a town near you soon!

Our next show is 7 November at Wharf Chambers, with our staunchies Interrobang.

Can’t get to Leeds? Tell your comrades who can.

Then on 29 November we join a line-up of punk royalty for Attila the Stockbroker’s Londonwick, in New Cross.


Then our final show of the year is Scroogenomics on 19 December at Rich Mix, with a Philosophy Football Christmas spectacular. Get your tickets in early – these shows always sell out.

Scroogeonomics flyer

Armistice Day Launch for Philosophy Football’s ‘Remembering 1914’ T-Shirt

ww1 s-s final

Today, on Armistice Day 2013, the comrades at Philosophy Football launch a Special Edition T-shirt for next year’s 1914 Centenary.  Designed by renowned illustrator and Philosophy Football collaborator Dan Murrell, a hauntingly simple yet incredibly powerful image to commemorate the sacrifice, appalling waste and destruction of the ‘Great War’. A silhouette of an unknown soldier, with a football instead of a rifle in hand, a single red poppy to remind us of the terrible physical and psychological damage that the ‘War to End All Wars’ resulted in. 

The soldier might be a Clydeside shipbuilder, a Dublin postal worker, a Welsh miner, an Indian farmer, a New Zealander, a Canadian, an American, an Australian, a South African, a Birmingham foundry worker, a Manchester mill hand, a Fleet Street machine minder. The place and date are unspecified. He’d sooner be playing football, away from the horror. And of course famously on Christmas Day 1914 soldiers from both sides did just that, a brief but hugely symbolic  episode of rank-and-file resistance to the juggernaut of war which left 22 million dead. He’d rather be playing football but all his mates who would play in his team would soon be be dead  at Loos, or Vimy Ridge. or the Somme, or Passchendaele. He is the Unknown Soldier, shown through a unique Philosophy Football prism.

And it is more than just a shirt. As Philosophy Football’s unique contribution to the centenary it will help fund a major event they have planned for Saturday 20 December 2014, to mark the 1914 Christmas Football Truce with a peace football tournament, music, poetry, ideas and art . An event in support of the No Glory in War 1914-18 campaign, which the shirt will be promoting too.

With respect and imagination Philosophy Football mark in a modern way via a T-shirt  the memory of World War One. The aim is to help challenge the hoopla of the fast-approaching centenary that threatens to smother us with a message of what a lovely war it was, and never mind cause, consequence or dubious purpose.

Thee Faction to Headline No Pasaran

A Night to Remember for the 75th Anniversary of the Return of the International Brigade’s British Battalion

A guest post from the comrades at Philosophy Football.


The red hot socialist R n’ B of Thee Faction will headline a spectacular show ‘No Pasaran’ which marks on Saturday 7 December the 75th anniversary of the return of the International Brigade’s British Battalion from the Spanish Civil War. It will be a fantastic gig: if you are a fan of Thee Faction’s music don’t miss it.
The rest of a superb line-up includes Maxine Peake, Mark Steel, Paul Mason, Francesca Beard, PanditG and Salma Yaqoob. Spoken word, comedy, red-hot socialist r n b, ideas and a dancefloor-filling DJ set. All brought together to mark the 75th anniversary of 7 December 1938 when the men and women of the International Brigade’s British Battalion docked at Newhaven then travelled by train to Victoria to be met by a crowd of thousands to celebrate their heroic stand against Fascism. 75 years on, Saturday 7 December 2013, ‘No Pasaran!’ Will be a night to remember.
The venue is superb too, Rich Mix is East London’s premier arts centre, superbly equipped for an event of this ambition, just 10 minutes walk from Liverpool Street or Old Street underground stations, almost opposite Shoreditch High Street overground station.
A Philosophy Football event, presented in association with the International Brigade Memorial Trust and generously sponsored by Thompson’s Solicitors
Tickets, just £9.99 plus p&p, are going fast so snap yours up early to be sure of your place. On the night doors will open at 6pm, the show begins at 7pm.
Book here   or if you prefer call to book 01273 472 721.
A note from Thee Faction: This will be the second of Philosophy Football’s events we’ve played at, having guested at their tremendous Stalingrad anniversary event last year. These nights are always amazing. The kind of person who likes us will love this night. The perfect mix of music and laughing and politics and dancing and polemic and drama and drinking and catching up with old comrades. You must come to this. It will sell out, so if you’re planning to come, book now.

What are Thee Faction up to?

Time to update you on our movements, comrades.

First up is our appearance at the Walthamstow Festival, London, E17 (6/9/13):

Thee Faction stow

Then we’re off to Bethnal Green (18/9/13):


Then we’ll be in Barnsley (5/10/13):


We’re playing Le Pub in Newport (18/10/13)

Then we’ll be in Wales again (Cardiff this time, though the gig remains unconfirmed) to take part in Mindfest (24/11/13)

We’ll be launching a new single at the Buffalo Bar in London on 28/11/13

And then we’re back in London again (7/12/13):


In addition to all this we’re doing Le Pub in Newport on the 18th October, and there are not-quite-confirmed gigs in Cardiff and London in November, which we’ll update you on as soon as they’re inked in.

Meanwhile we have our latest album for sale. You need this:

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or go and check out all the multi-album packages available from Soviet Beret Records.

Not sure whether or not to buy? Check out what’s on it.

Here’s the single:

And here’s a sampler of the whole album:

Still not sure? Check out all the press it’s had.

Remember, if you want access to our constant political and economic commentary, you won’t tend to find it here. We do all our best work on facebook. Go and ‘like’ us over there. And keep an eye out for news of a new single.

See you at the gigs, comrades.

Thee Faction



In funeral black: a new T-shirt from Philosophy Football


Thatcher s-s Mk III
This one is for the miners, the steelworkers, the printers, the millions unemployed, the injustices the Hillsborough familes were forced to endure, the Poll Tax protesters, those who lost their lives on HMS Sheffield, and the Belgrano, for what? For the women of Greenham Common and the Trident missiles we didn’t want. For the NHS and the nurses, our schools and teachers, the council houses sold off, the privatisation of our public utilities, railways and buses. For our school milk. For  the reputation of St Francis of Assisi.

In remembrance of all we lost 1979-90, much of it never returned to us. A life remembered with decent human sympathy. But lifetimes remembered too, scarred by divisions we’ll never forget .

Special offer just £17.99 until the ceremonial funeral.:

Order before Friday12th and Philosophy Football will do their very best to get in time for you to wear on the day of the Funeral.

From here.

Wear Your Colours For Emily’s Centenary

Continental Grey Dare on White
Incoming dispatch from the comrades at Philosophy Football. Thee Faction commend this piece to you all. See that T-shirt above, and the others below?  They could be yours. Read on…
One hundred years ago the Epsom Derby was disrupted by perhaps the most famous protest at a sporting event in history.
Britain at the time was bitterly divided. The early Trade Unions and others were striking against poverty wages and appalling working conditions. The cause of Ireland’s Freedom was attracting support on both sides of the Irish Sea. And from the Suffragettes came a massive wave of non-violent direct action.
For these Suffragettes the Derby was absolutely a legitimate target for their protest. Horse-racing was the sport of the Establishment. Epsom was a day out to celebrate tradition, one that denied women the vote. The King and Queen would be in attendance to watch the their own horse race for glory.
When Emily Wilding Davison ran on to the racecourse a century ago she hoped to stop the race and ensure that women’s voices be heard.  When the horse at full speed collided with her, the chances of survival were virtually non-existent. She never regained consciousness and four days later she lost her battle to live.
Emily’s heroic, yet fatal, action formed part of a protest movement that involved many thousands more women.  From smashing every shop window in London’s West End to blowing up post boxes, via disrupting Parliament’s proceedings and heckling MPs at public meetings, this was a campaign few could ignore. So when they couldn’t ignore them, they imprisoned them, and when the demand by the women that they be treated as political prisoners was also ignored the Suffragettes responded by going on hunger strike. Again their punishment was more repression, brutalised by force-feeding. But these ferociously brave women still refused to abandon their cause.
The Suffragettes were not fighting for the vote alone, but for women’s liberation too. Most saw the vote as one step towards getting what they wanted. The Suffragette movement was large and strong, yet at the same time complex and multifaceted, combining those for whom hope lay in constitutional reform with others who believed in the vocabulary of revolution. Whatever their differing objectives, the result of the campaign was the loosening of the ideological hold of men over women. Women gained a real sense of their equality, and began to establish a determination to put it into practice. By their actions and protests , as well as their ideas and arguments, the Suffragettes liberated themselves and all their sisters too.
In 1918 the Representation of the People Act finally awarded women the vote, but only for those over 30 years  of age. In 1928, fifteen years after Emily gave her life for the cause, women’s parity in the vote was finally recognised when the voting age for women was reduced to 21 years, the same as for men.
Philosophy Football have produced a set of commemorative designs featuring the colours purple, green and white. These were hugely symbolic for the Suffragette cause. Purple was for dignity, white for purity and green for hope. Militant, committed to direct action, courageous and in the end victorious too.  Deeds not Words and Dare to be Free were the twin ideals, worn as brooches, on sashes, carried as banners, that shaped the Suffragette movement.  A century later we can wear them again, as T-shirts. All designs available from Philosophy Football.
 The shirts are in support of the  Emily Wilding Davison Centenary Campaign. Thee Faction urge you to get hold of these shirts and commemorate the struggle. There is still a long way to go.
To celebrate International Women’s Day this Friday 8th March, can we suggest you go and see our great friends and comrades Colour Me Wednesday and The Tuts play at the Gunners Pub, N5.
Continental Roundel set separate

Victory at Stalingrad – The Movie


On 2nd February 2013 Thee Faction took part in a fantastic night, organised by the comrades at Philosophy Football, to celebrate the 70th anniversay of the Red Army smashing the Nazis at Stalingrad. It was one of the best thought-out and planned events we’ve ever been a part of. There were speakers (historian Geoffrey Roberts, Seamus Milne, Clare Solomon, Susan Richards), bands (Thee Faction and the Trans-Siberian March Band),  and a disco (with our own Billy Brentford spinning some floor-filling proletarian sexy club funk), all held together with rabble-rousing polemic from Philosophy Football’s Mark Perryman. It was sold-out, yet the move from seated lecture hall to vibrant dance hall was executed super-smoothly, and the whole event was a wonderful example of why socialism is always going to be more efficient than capitalism. Thee Faction had a tremendous time, and the comrades on the merch stall managed to sell record breaking quantities of our records, despite stiff competition from the Great Patriotic War memorial plates.

The whole thing is available as a movie (above). It’ll take up a quarter of an hour of your time to watch, but it gives a real flavour of how special this event was. We pop up in the middle doing ‘366’ and at the end stumbling through the harmonies on ‘Marx, My Main Man’. Watch, enjoy, and make sure you go to these comrades next event. Us? We’ve got our fingers crossed for an invite to perform at whatever they do in 2017. That’s a pretty big anniversarsary….

Oh, the comrades at Philosophy Football made some superb shirts to commemorate Stalingrad. Pop across and have a look. Buy them for all your family.



Thee Faction to Co-Headline Victory at Stalingrad Gig

PF News A2 spread

Saturday 2 February 2013. The 70th Anniversary of the Red Army’s Victory at Stalingrad.

Tickets are selling very very quickly, so book now to avoid missing this fantastic night.

“Meet Comrade Feelgood.” Q Magazine.

The blistering hot socialist R&B of Thee Faction will be providing anthems to march, and dance to! A night of musical mayhem and purpose.

“Balkan ska meets Ottoman punk in The Trans-Siberian’s infectious brass blow-out.” Time Out

Co-headliner The Trans-Siberian March Band are a Balkan Brass band with a
fearsome blend of two clarinets, two saxophones, three trumpets, two tubas, two trombones,guitar,vocals and two percussionists, they never fail to get audiences dancing.

Opening the night, Seumas Milne columnist on the Guardian and author of The Revenge of History discusses the meaning of Stalingrad with Geoffrey Roberts acclaimed historian of the Eastern Front and author of Stalin’s General: The Life of Georgy Zhukov who is joined by Susan Richards, editor of the OpenDemocacy Russia website and author of Lost and Found in Russia. Reporting from today’s anti-fascist frontline, Matthew Collins, author of Hate.

Mixing music, art, photography and poetry Victory at Stalingrad will be a night of entertaining ideas. There’s exclusive discounts on Philosophy Football T-shirts and Stalingrad books on the night too!

At Rich Mix 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 (5 mins from Liverpool Street). Doors open 6pm, show starts 7pm.

TICKETS JUST £9.99. From Philosophy Football or call 01273 472 721

A Philosophy Football night out in association with Hope not Hate


Victory at Stalingrad – Anniversary Night Out

Saturday 2 February 2013 is the 70th Anniversary of the Red Army Victory at Stalingrad, an epic moment that turned the tide against Hitler. Philosophy Football have organised a brilliantly eclectic event to mark the occasion, featuring Thee Faction.

After a set of your favourite Thee Faction blisteringly hot R&B anthems to dance or march to, prepare for the warped fusion of Balkan Ska and Ottoman Punk that is the Trans-Siberian March Band.

The Trans-Siberian March band are a 13-piece Balkan Brass band with a fearsome blend of two clarinets, two saxophones, three trumpets, two tubas, two trombones, guitar, vocals and two percussionists, they never fail to get audiences dancing. If you are yet to experience them see more here.

Philosophy Football Nights are a curious mix of ideas and entertainment. Injecting the former into the occasion Seumas Milne, Guardian Columnist and author of The Revenge of History discusses the meaning of Stalingrad with acclaimed historian of the Eastern Front Geoffrey Roberts, author of Stalin’s General : The Life of Georgy Zhukov and Susan Richards, editor of the OpenDemocracy Russia website and author of Lost and Found in Russia..

At Rich Mix,35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6LA. Doors 0pen 6pm, show starts 7pm.

Tickets £9.99,from Philosophy Football or call 01273 472 721. Warning, we’ve been advised Philosophy Football nights ALWAYS sell out!

70th Anniversary of Stalingrad

September 13th will mark the 70th anniversary of Stalingrad. The Eastern Front of the fight against the Nazis doesn’t get that much attention these days. But it did at the time. Stalingrad was an epic victory in the fight against fascism in general and the Nazis in particular, and started the chain of events leading to the crushing of Hitler in 1945. We must not forget.

Our friends and comrades at Philosophy Football are commemorating the anniversary with a tremendous range of T-shirts. Every socialist and anti-fascist needs one of these. Here’s a message from the comrades, and details of how to get your hands on one of these top class shirts. We expect to see a room full of them at all our forthcoming gigs. Read on:


We know what’s at stake and how great the foe’s power, 

And what is now coming to pass.
The hour of courage has struck on the clock
And our courage will hold to the last.
The bullets can kill us, but cannot deter;
Though our houses will fall, we shall remain.

Anna Akhmatova, 1942

13 September, 06.45, 1942 the Nazi onslaught on Stalingrad commenced with a bloody vengeance. The sky turned brown from the dust of fragmented buildings, the ground vibrated because of the power of the explosions. The Fascist army’s advance continued but faced the most ferocious resistance imaginable. The horror of fighting the Soviet troops on their favoured terrain, the approaching Russian winter, fast became a reality for Hitler’s Generals. While German tanks entered the outskirts of Stalingrad the Soviets dug in preparing to fight for every district, every street, every house.

Almost six months later , 2 February 1943 and the defeat of the Nazi forces which had sought to encircle and destroy Stalingrad was complete. Out of each Red Army division sent to defend the city no more than a few hundred soldiers survived, 1.1 million casualties, of which 485,751 lost their lives.

For Hitler the defeat at Stalingrad was the beginning of the end. The story of the Red Army’s sacrifice had a powerful effect across the world, especially on resistance movements in occupied Europe. The Russians who had taken the brunt of the German onslaught since 1941 were now turning the tide and a year later would be joined by the Allied forces opening up the second front with the D-Day landings landings at Normandy.

Philosophy Football’s 1942-2012 Stalingrad range marks the battle’s 70th Anniversary. Inspired by Anna Akhmatova’s poem the designs are based on a medal, a fuselage, a propaganda poster, a book title from the time and the slogan with which the Russian people greeted their eventual victory. ” Nobody is forgotten. Nothing is forgotten!”


Stalingrad Anniversary Shirts available from