Monthly Archives: May 2014

CJ Wildheart – Mable

CJ Wildheart - MableIn the wake of his sometime bandmate Ginger’s series of super-successful Pledgemusic campaigns, CJ Wildheart recently launched his own project through the crowd funding site and the result, an album by the name of Mable, has now dropped through my letterbox.

From the off the album is just what you’d expect from CJ If you’ve heard his work with The Wildhearts, The Jellies, Honeycrack or CJ & The Satellites and that is wave after wave of melodic pop-rock that seems designed to raise spirits and get rooms jumping, should it ever be playing live.

It pulls together a sound that, if I had to use other bands as reference points, I’d say draws from the likes of Foo Fighters, Weezer and Terrorvision to create a sound that is reminiscent of CJ’s work in other bands but is still all his own.

What I think really makes the sound unique is a glam-like stomp and swagger that comes through, particularly in the guitar work. This makes it all sound like a pop-punk band that’s grown up somewhat more gracefully than the likes of Blink 182 seem to have managed and without becoming as worthy and pop-political as Green Day.

CJ WIldheartA comparison to Ginger Wildheart’s work seems obvious but is somewhat called for and, in this regard, I am very torn. Certainly Mable is a far less sonically schizophrenic (schizophonic?) record than any of Ginger’s recent output which makes it a much easier listen at times, but, as to whether this makes it better or not? Well, my internal jury is still out on that.

While the first half of the album is all swaggering, bounce along sounds the second half does pull things down a bit, tonally speaking, and adds an extra maturity to proceedings. It is this that I think really makes the record, with album closer Midlife Crisis? in particular coming across as brilliantly universal, thematically speaking, while also being pop-rock enough to get people dancing if they don’t care to listen to the lyrics.

CJ with Mable (and other chickens)

CJ with Mable (and other chickens)

Predominantly recorded by CJ himself, with a few helping hands on programming and gang vocals, Mable is very much CJ’s record and sounds much more assured and confident than the CJ & The Satellites album and, despite it not being a full band project, I could picture these songs being played live, and I really hope that happens.

If you like pop-rock with a bit of a heavier edge and good honest songs then Mable is well worth a listen as its infectious upbeat tones are the perfect sound as we head into summer and festival season.

And to give you a flavour of the stompier side of the album here is the official video for Down The Drain made by the fine chaps over at Ash TV:

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Brunt (album review)

BruntA few weeks ago Guernsey-based stoner rock trio Brunt unleashed their debut album on the world.

Across five tracks the band’s style of instrumental sludge is something a bit different for music in Guernsey and has already made quite a mark on the live scene with shows at the islands two biggest music festivals, Chaos and the Vale Earth Fair, as well as many other gigs besides.

The album was recorded by Lifejacket Studios and is available via the band’s bandcamp page along with some rather snazzy t-shirts featuring versions of the artwork that was released in limited edition along with early copies of the music.

My review was published in The Guernsey Press on Thursday 29th May 2014:

Brunt review scan - 29:05:14and here’s a little preview of what the band actually sound like:

 

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

X-Men: Days Of Future Past

X-Men Days of Future Past-Movie posterI will admit that, in the past, some of my straight from the cinema reviews of comic book movies haven’t lived up to scrutiny in the cold light of day, once the whiz-bang has all died down (see Avengers and to a lesser extent Man of Steel and Iron Man 3). Recently I have also become somewhat disillusioned with comic book movies in general and Marvel based fare in particular, thanks to the likes of Thor: The Dark World.

So, it was with some trepidation (but hope) that I headed in to see the latest installment of the extended X-Men franchise, Days Of Future Past.

Inspired by the comic story of the same name the film deals with a dystopian future where mutants (and most of humanity it seems) have been all but destroyed by The Sentinels – big robots designed to hunt and kill mutants and sympathisers – and one of the X-Men being sent back into the past to try to save the future.

James McAvoy

James McAvoy

While this may sound a bit like its going to hit logical snags it deals with it fairly elegantly by not really even trying to explain things and just putting it down to mutant powers, in this case those of Kitty Pryde. From there most of the movie takes place in the early 1970s with the First Class cast along with the ever-present Hugh Jackman as Wolverine and Peter Dinklage on fine form as primary antagonist, Bolivar Trask.

This is something of a masterstroke as (with a bit of retconning) it manages to link both franchises, while making it clear that the main team is now the one led by James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender’s Professor X and Magneto, rather than Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen’s.

Michael Fassbender

Michael Fassbender

It is their performances that really anchor the movie. While Jackman does what he has been doing for the best part of 20 years McAvoy and Fassbender’s performances are where the heart lies. McAvoy in particular stands out bringing (a very toned down version of) what he did in Filth to a much broader movie and still making it clearly the Charles Xavier Patrick Stewart portrays.

Really it’s the performances that stood out for me as, while there was plenty of spectacle on offer, at no point did it feel like the characters and story were being ignored while CGI people got thrown through buildings and the like.

Some have bemoaned the fact that a lot of the characters from the previous films are somewhat glossed over here, particularly the likes of Storm, Iceman and Colossus, and that newcomer Bishop is under used.

Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart

Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart

For me though, I liked the fact these characters were there (and played by the same actors as in the past) as it showed this was the same universe but without having to extend the film with needless sub-plots just to serve, in this case, superfluous characters.

All of this is backed up by, returning director, Bryan Singer’s vision for the movies that he laid out in X-Men and X2 as he uses the mutants’ story as an allegory for various issues relating to human rights, much like the comics have done throughout their history, while never becoming bogged down in the issues and still making a fun action-adventure.

I know it’s probably a bit old-hat now but I’m still relatively new (and a bit skeptical) about 3D, so I was pleasantly surprised as to some of its uses here. While most of the 3D remained somewhat superfluous, there were a few moments where it seemed Singer was using it to highlight things, particularly in regard to Charles’ chessboard, which has been an ongoing motif between both sets of characters.

By the time a franchise reaches its seventh instalment it would normally be expected that any freshness would be gone and things would have become painfully repetitive. With X-Men: Days Of Future Past though this feels like a franchise fully rejuvenated and ready for more, and with a post credits sting that certainly hints at much more to come.

Quicksilver

Quicksilver

I just hope Zack Snyder and co over on Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice were taking notes from Singer, Vaughan and the X-Men team…

Also, new mutant Quicksilver was really only a cameo, but an excellently done one that also hinted at the bigger universe of the X-Men with a couple of subtle (by comic book movie standards) nods and winks.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Yes Sir Boss – King In A Rocking Chair

Yes Sir Boss - King In A Rocking ChairHaving picked up a copy of King In a Rocking Chair at a recent Yes Sir Boss gig at The Fermain Tavern in Guernsey I came to it with certain expectations.

The bands’ live show is a tight, energetic one that proved capable of getting a room bouncing while the band displayed an astonishing level of musicality, even overcoming a few technical difficulties without missing a beat.

While some tracks on the album do hint towards the bands’ crowd pleasing, up beat, abilities in the live arena, as a whole King In A Rocking Chair has a rather different feel.

While it still bends genres as much as their live performance with hints of 50s style rock ‘n’ roll rubbing shoulders with reggae, ska and jangly indie where the album shines is when it heads into a kind of hybrid soul-blues territory.

Yes Sir Boss

It is in this that Yes Sir Boss’ combination of guitars and brass really comes together with a melodic and vocal style that belies their vaguely Bristolian origins. In this Matthew Sellors’ vocals seem to transform to fit the style and, while these aren’t the records most upbeat and sing-along tracks, they are the ones that have the most coherent sound and seem to show off the bands’ full potential.

While it would be nice to hear a record more representative of what I experienced of Yes Sir Boss live, King In A Rocking Chair does succeed in doing one thing that their live show did; demonstrate just how good this five-piece is as a band.

Tagged , , , , ,

The Wolf Of Wall Street

The Wolf Of Wall Street posterI came to Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio’s The Wolf Of Wall Street on Blu-ray rather than in the cinema so there was already a fair amount of baggage coming along with it as I hit play – thankfully I soon became wrapped up in the story and the baggage, for the most part, fell away.

Really it is the story here that is the star, as it really should be with any film, but sadly isn’t always. Ok, it’s a story that’s been told before – self-made man loses any sense of conscience and, inevitably, gets something of a comeuppance – but in the hands of renowned master like Scorsese, and with the ever charismatic DiCaprio in the lead role, the story is certainly one worth hearing again, here through the prism of Wall Street and stock brokering.

Based on real events, DiCaprio portrays Jordan Belfort and the film follows his rise and fall and, if I’m honest, throughout he comes across as a pretty horrible human being. There are a few moments where I thought, maybe I’ll side with this guy now, but every time he ends up doing something to maintain his level of awfulness. The rest of the main group of characters aren’t much better, aside from some funny moments (mostly coming from Jonah Hill’s Donnie Azof), generally they are not people I could empathise with or side with at any point.

Wolf Of Wall Street - Leonardo DiCaprioSo, what was it that kept me interested for the three hours that the film runs (and certainly I did remain interested for that whole time)?

What I would put it down to is something of the director. Across his career Scorsese has focused a lot of his work on painting portraits of different aspects of his home city, New York, and, in one way or another that is what The Wolf Of Wall Street does as well.

Here we see the side of the city in the late 1980s and 1990s that is far removed from the street level of many of Scorsese’s other films but does feature some of the same aspects. There is an element of organised crime (albeit here doing its best to not be crime) and a lone character who is out for no one but himself.

the-wolf-of-wall-street-leonardo-dicaprio-martin-scorseseAnd so, it was this painting of a side of a city and an era, that is what kept my interest.

A couple of things did stick with me from what I’d heard before seeing the film; First was that Matthew McConaughey totally stole every scene he was in, which he did. Second was that the movie’s gender politics were far from healthy – again very much true, but this part of what made Belfort such an odious character.

The other thing was the excesses of the movie. At three hours it is, arguably, excessively long – though as I’ve said I didn’t feel it out stayed its welcome and so this excess very much worked in its favour. The other, more discussed, excess is in the depiction of sex of drugs, with many saying that it became dull and repetitive and some even saying pointless.

STA0408WOLF_360337kMaybe it’s a sign that I’m somewhat desensitized to some of these things, but I found that the sex and drugs depicted in The Wolf Of Wall Street were entirely appropriate for the movie and its story. Belfort’s life was, by his own admission, packed with such excesses for the period the movie focuses on and, according to some reports, the movie actually tones it down a bit.

Certainly this isn’t a family friendly, watered down, version of the story, but I thought the excess was far from as “bad” as some have claimed.

The Wolf Of Wall Street shows Scorsese and DiCaprio as joint auteurs, continuing their professional relationship (which has been going for the last decade or so) very well and, while the movie is flawed at times and doesn’t live up to some of the hype (good or bad), it is certainly still a good film and tackles a story we’ve heard before in a way that, for me, was certainly new and interesting – and with a great soundtrack running throughout, Me First And The Gimme Gimmes to Plastic Bertrand… I’m buying!

And well, just because, here’s some Plastic Bertrand – Ca Plane Pour Moi:

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

The Rocky Horror Picture Show

The Rocky Horror Picture Show blu-rayBefore I begin I am wondering exactly why, and how, one is supposed to review a cult film? Oh well, I’m going to anyway so here we go.

Ever since I discovered The Rocky Horror Picture Show in my teens, on VHS, I’ve been a big fan, so, as it’s just been re-issued in a shiny steelbook Blu-ray edition, I thought it time to take another look, as its been a while since I’ve actually sat down to watch the movie.

As the new Blu-ray gave me the option I chose to watch the US cut of the movie rather than the UK version which I presumed I was more familiar with. To be honest there is not much difference between the two until the second to last song, but more of that later.

Kicking off with a huge pair of red lips filling the screen, the scene is set as the lips act something like a curtain in a theatre instantly signaling us to suspend our disbelief and just go with what we see while, in the lyrics to Science Fiction, Double Feature, its clear we are heading into b-movie referencing, 1950s nostalgia territory.

Rocky-Horror-Picture-Show-LipsThe opening scene is the only one that tries to be set in the real world, but even this has its odd moments with some American Gothic referencing cameos and a billboard in a graveyard that sets the off beat tone for what is to come.

From this scene on its clear that this is adapted from a stage musical, and many of the performers were veterans of that version, so some of the musical numbers have a somewhat stagey feel but, it is to the credit of the direction and editing, that this is varied just enough with cutaways and similar techniques to never become stagey and it actually heightens the non-realism of the movie in the process.

Brad and Janet

Brad and Janet

As our protagonist duo of Brad (Barry Bostwick) and Janet (Susan Sarandon) head away from the chapel and into the night the pace picks up and, really, never lets up. My remembrance of the movie was that, despite everything, there was something of a lull after Sweet Transvestite, but for the one hour thirty-eight minutes of it The Rocky Horror Picture Show is non-stop – if it’s not a song, there is something happening pushing the boundaries of taste and absurdity in one way or another and all delivered with a sense of knowing mischievous delight.

This tone really comes through in the performances and, while Richard O’Brien is clearly the heart and soul and giving the most committed performance of his own script as Riff Raff, the whole cast seem to be giving it their all.

Frank N. Furter

Frank N. Furter

The real star is Tim Curry as Dr. Frank N. Furter combining creepiness with camp to create a character who varies from malevolent to genuinely empathic at different points and has a truly triumphant pathos drenched end with I’m Going Home.

Across the movie the production values vary wildly so while the sets are all impressive and big design pieces, from Frank’s lab to the floor show finish, the dance routines at times have something of the am-dram to them and there are many moments where both continuity and dubbing go out of the window. But this never really matters if you’ve got swept up in the whole thing, which is where the cult status of the film comes into play.

Rocky HorrorI have a feeling that anyone coming to the film fresh will have one of two reactions; a love they can’t quite explain or they simply won’t like it and will think it’s a bit of a mess, which I suppose is fair enough, though as someone who falls into the first camp, its likely I’ll never really understand the second.

As I was saying earlier, the US cut excises a couple of verses of the song Superheroes which gives the film a more conventionally rounded ending as we see Brad and Janet (and Dr. Scott) escape.

Richard O'Brien as Riff Raff

Richard O’Brien as Riff Raff

This though sits at odds with the overall tone of the film when compared to the cut with the full version of the song which adds a sense of melancholy to Brad and Janet’s ‘escape’ from the Transylvanians and leaves things on something of an ambiguous note that is far more in-keeping with the rest of the movie.

In the end, even nearly 40 years after its release, The Rocky Horror Picture Show stands up as a subversive treat that is at once silly and shocking and epitomises cult cinema in a way very few other films have managed. It merges The Wizard Of Oz with 1950s sci-fi and the kind of movies that only seemed to come out of the 1970s typified by the likes of John Waters all with knowing charm that really shows this could only be the product of Richard O’Brien’s mind and really that is what we are watching translated onto a cinema screen.

As an extra note I’d highly recommend Stuart Samuels’ documentary Midnight Movies as a companion piece to The Rocky Horror Picture Show if you’re in something of an exploratory mood (sorry about the quality of the trailer, it’s the only one I could find)…

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Live Music at Castle Cornet – 16/05/14

As part of the Museums at Night programme and the Guernsey Literary Festival Castle Cornet threw open its gates on the evening of Friday 16th May 2014 for more than 40 events from film screenings and guided historical tours to live music.

The evening started out with Sark based five-piece The Recks who played to a large and constantly growing crowd on the castle’s south battery. As ever their performance was upbeat and, while most were content to sit and watch while enjoying the sun and a picnic, the band went down very well with many calls for an encore as their set finished.

The Recks

The Recks

They were followed by The Space Pirates of Rocquaine who continued the fun and got quite a few youngsters up and dancing to their songs that cover everything from witches and werewolves to pirates and Sark Skies. Following last week’s somewhat underwhelming outing on Liberation Day the band were back firing on all cylinders tonight and, like The Recks, went down very well with the big crowd at Castle Cornet’s picturesque south battery.

The Space Pirates of Rocquaine

The Space Pirates of Rocquaine

While silent film classic F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu was screening in one of the castle’s magazine buildings another, smaller stage featured some more low-key musical performances and gave me my first chance to catch acoustic duo Blue Mountains. With guitars, mandolins and a dulcimer to hand they combined some sweet instrumental tones with great vocals to create their own sound and, while I didn’t catch their whole set tonight, I hope it won’t be too long before I can see them again as they sounded very good at the Castle.

Blue Mountains

Blue Mountains

You can see a full gallery of my photos from the event on the BBC Introducing Guernsey Facebook page.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Liberation Day At The Last Post – 09/05/14

The Space Pirates at The Last Post

The Space Pirates at The Last Post

For the last few years The Vale Earth Fair have taken on duties of organizing live music for the St Andrews Liberation Day celebrations around The Last Post. As I arrived, in time for the first act, it seemed things were going as they often do for shows like this with a couple of bands having pulled out at the last-minute and a few acoustic acts rustled up to fill the gap.

First on stage was RentOClean’s Dan Guilbert, starting off with a jam like series of short songs riffing on a reggae-ish blues sound with freestyled lyrics. As this began to wear a bit thin he warmed up and delivered a few songs all with something of a reggae flavour whether they be Bob Marley or Johnny Cash covers. While the dub-y vibe soon out stayed its welcome for me, Dan played well and got the ball rolling the day and he seemed to go down well with the small crowd.

Chloe Le Page

Chloe Le Page

Chloe Le Page was up next and was the first to suffer adverse effects from the day’s strong wind but, none-the-less, she continued to build on her reputation as a good young acoustic guitarist and singer. With a mix of originals and acoustic covers she began to up the ante of the music a bit and displayed a great confidence on stage and, though the audience was still small as most stayed out of the wind at the back of the pub, Chloe made an impression on those who stuck it out round the front.

The first act of the day to gain a reasonable size audience was Matt Ward with his selection of indie and new-folk covers and originals. As always Matt brought an authentic presence to the stage for the songs he sang which went down well with the growing audience and continued to up the ante towards the full bands to come even though his set was cut slightly short thanks to the effect on the blustery weather on Matt’s voice.

Buffalo Huddleston were the first full band of the day and their summer sounds helped fight off the effects of the cold wind and even got a few moving as the road outside The Last Post filled up. The full line up of the band has really helped them instantly get over to new crowds and particularly helped them cut through the outside sound today.

Buffalo Huddleston

Buffalo Huddleston

As ever the band were consummate performers with Jull-z, Mike Meinke and Becky Hamilton’s vocals all bringing something different to the sound that really does help to make something that spans genres like few others. Less of the mid-set selfies next time though, maybe?

Shows like this seem custom-made for The Space Pirates of Rocquaine as their acoustic folk rock has enough of a sense of knowing fun and some interesting references for the grown ups while youngsters just seem to like to dance to them.

This may not have been their tightest set thanks to the sore throat of Lisa Vidamour but it didn’t really seem to slow them down as they treated us to songs old and new and rounded things off with a rendition of their take on Sarnia Cherie which has never been more apt than on Liberation Day.

Edith's Head

Edith’s Head

Edith’s Head made a rare appearance as the day continued and brought the dancier end of their sound to the day that got many, especially of the younger part of the crowd, dancing in the street. As ever each member of the band displayed some excellent musicianship with Colin Falla and Brett Stewart standing out in getting the dancing sounds going and Sue Mahy’s vocals completing the sound in their uniquely soulful way.

The music outside was rounded off by Stalk The Lantern (who I won’t review as it would be hard for me to be impartial) and things then headed inside The Last Post as the main road reopened and Static Alice commenced the music there.

Static Alice

Static Alice

Much like last weekend at the Chaos Star Wars Day show they mixed covers of the likes of The Sweet and AC/DC with original alt-rock songs and delivered them all with a strong confidence and presence that soon had people dancing and really got the evening part of the Liberation party going very well, even if the lounge bar of The Last Post isn’t really ideally suited.

Unfortunately it was after Static Alice that I had to head off so I missed RentOClean and Thee Jenerators but I can only imagine the party continued in full swing as things didn’t look likely to slow down any time soon as I headed out into the evening.

You can see more of my photos from the day on the BBC Introducing Guernsey Facebook page.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

Anchorman 2 posterAfter two more hours in the company of Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) and his news team a few things are evidently clear; Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is baggy, overlong and monstrously unoriginal. But, somehow, it manages to pull enough together to actually be genuinely funny in places – even if most of the jokes are ones we’ve heard or seen before.

Plot wise things are, much like their predecessor, at best loose – Ron is recruited to act as anchor on the world’s first 24-hour news station and moderate chaos ensues. Along with this we get sub-plots galore, mostly focusing on Ron and his various relationships, but also one, possibly the films most inventive, introduces a love interest for Steve Carrell’s weatherman, Brick Tamland.

While elements of the movie teeter on the edge of flat-out offensive, there is enough satire in the character of Burgundy that it just stays on the right side of the line (for the most part) but the main satire, though obvious, is relatively well played.

ANCHORMAN 2: THE LEGEND CONTINUES

The News Team

This takes in the birth of 24-hour news and what news broadcasting has become, particularly in the US where Fox News seems to be all-pervasive. So here we have a corrupt Australian millionaire starting a news station and doing his best to influence the news agenda while Ron makes his broadcasts the news “people want to hear” focusing on “cute animals and patriots”.

Ok, so it’s not Drop The Dead Donkey, but it holds enough of an interest to raise a few laughs and the absurdity of everything else delivers enough other laughs to keep things rolling.

The film’s main problem is that the loose story often falls too far to the wayside and didn’t really act as enough of a framework to really draw me in and several of the sub-plots just seem to be included to call back to the first movie without really doing anything to add to this one.

Steve-Carell-Kristin-Wiig-Brick-Tamland-Anchorman-2-Legend-Continues

Brick and Chani

As with the previous film the main performances are all great, if you like that sort of thing, with Ferrell and co playing broad caricatures that really don’t do much to emotionally engage but are generally entertaining and its Paul Rudd’s Brian Fantana who once again stands out from the pack – aside from Ferrell’s uniquely bizarre, jazz-flute maestro, Burgundy.

Ending with something of a cameo overload, followed by an unsuccessful attempt to pull the many strands of the story together, I was left certainly entertained; but I can only think I’d have been more consistently entertained if the movie had been half an hour shorter and I can only really hope we aren’t ‘treated’ to any more sequels.

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Chaos Goes Star Wars – The Fermain Tavern – 04/05/14

Static Alice

Static Alice

It doesn’t take much of an excuse for the guys who organise the annual Chaos festival to have a party so, as last Sunday fell on a bank holiday weekend and it was May The Fourth (Be With You… if you’ve not been keeping up with the puns) and thus Star Wars Day, it seemed a perfectly suited time to warm up for their 10th anniversary festival at the end of June with a long evening of live music at The Fermain Tavern.

Things started in mellow mode with Autumn and her harp playing a selection of songs and tunes. Its been a while since I’ve caught Autumn and I have to say while her harp skills had always been great she had, in the past, sometimes been let down by her vocals. Here though there was no such issue as she sang and played in a nicely relaxed style to start the day and, while many stayed outside on the Tav’s deck in the sun, those inside they were treated to something unique.

The Black Vote

The Black Vote

Following an appearance by The Phantom Cosmonaut (who I won’t review for obvious reasons, look him up, you’ll see why) it was The Black Vote’s time to hit the stage and really kick up the speed and noise with a set of their brand of punk rock.

As ever The Black Vote delivered exactly what everyone has come to expect and, while it’s not to everyone’s tastes, and wavers on taking things too far most of the time, if hard, fast, noisy punk rock is your thing then they kicked off the full bands in style.

Much like a few weeks ago at Fermain Fest, The Doomsday Project had the job of following The Black Vote. With a set of pop punk it seemed more to the tastes of the crowd as frontman and bass player George Russell, complete with Darth Maul costume, and co played through a set of mostly pop-punk covers that, for me, took me back to the late 90s and early 2000s.

The Doomsday Project

The Doomsday Project

Performing a few songs with a guest female vocalist varied their sound a bit, which was nice to hear, and they had some originals in the mix too which hint that they are heading in the right direction and could be a band to keep an eye on over the next few years – although Cuttlefish is fast becoming a stand out, ill-fitting, low point of their performances – decent tune but could do with some reworking in the lyrics.

It was time for a debut next as One Mind To Lose took to the stage. Fronted by Gemma Honey, formerly of Party In Paris, a good vocal performance was expected and delivered and the rest of the band all seemed to be hitting their marks admirably (despite a couple of issues from the lead guitarist’s cables).

One Mind To Lose

One Mind To Lose

With a mix of pop-rock covers and originals on offer they delivered a set that sounded a little loose and undisciplined in places, but for a first public show it was an admirable outing and with a bit more stage presence One Mind To Lose could become another on the list of new bands to watch out for.

The night was rounded off by a couple more established, but still fresh, bands. Brunt began this, hot of a performance at the previous weekend’s Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses event (the final of which is coming up on May 17th).

Brunt

Brunt

As ever their sound stands out from the crowd in the current crop of regularly performing bands over here but once again it attracted a dedicated group of followers and the vaguely psychedelic, stoner grooves seemed to draw in quite a few others as well.

Bedecked in Sith-style robes Brunt seemed more at ease of stage here than I have seen them in the past and there seemed to be some new material in amongst tracks from their recently released debut EP and, while it was slow and heavy, they seemed to strike a chord at the Tav.

The night was rounded off by Static Alice, back on more familiar ground than at their #Triplestoked show, as they mixed covers and originals and really got the crowd going despite the show running a bit late – well it is called Chaos!

Luis of Static Alice

Luis of Static Alice

Dressed in a range of Star Wars inspired outfits, including guitarist Luis rocking a Princess Leia look without a care, Static Alice’s wall-to-wall pop rock brought a great, fun atmosphere to the show and there seemed to be much more balance and dynamic amongst the band members than at their last outing here.

It’s not often you see Lightsabers on the dancefloor but they were all but mandatory during Static Alice’s performance and, even though it was late, the party kept rolling to the bitter end of Ballroom Blitz and an original song that worked brilliantly to close the night and showed a real confidence from the band in their own material which is always encouraging to see.

With a little less than two months until the festival, Chaos continued the road to their big show with great style tonight, and some amazing Star Wars inspired costumes from both bands and audience to boot.

You can see a full gallery of my photos from the gig on the BBC Introducing Guernsey Facebook page.

My review was published in The Guernsey Press on Thursday 15th May, here it is:

Chaos Star Wars Day gig scan - 15:05:14

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,