THE SAS TOUR
BRADFORD, THE ZUU BAR - 16th April 2011
Another day, another road trip, another town, another gig, another excuse to have a party!
Fresh from playing at The King Edward VII in Norwich on the evening before, we loaded up the moosemobile with guitars, amps, gizmos and 'for-the-trip' sustainence. We had a bit of a false start as my sat nag wouldn't recognise the postcode and despite much teasing and cajouling it continued to behave like a three year throwing a tantrum refusing to do as it was told so a short sharp slap to the back of legs was executed with a rolled up journey plan printed off by one Mr Woodstock PunkRock curtesy of the Royal Automobile Associations site on the tinter web.
The journey was reasonably uneventful (thanks to Woodstock for sharing the driving!) and the most stressful part of the whole trip was touring round Bradford trying to find the Hotel...
Must add at this point - JURYS INN HOTEL, BRADFORD - what a place to stay. In the city centre, convenient multi-story carpark within spitting distance and if you get your parking ticket endorsed by the hotel you get a decent reduction on the cost of parking too - the staff were extremely helpful; the rooms were of a very decent quality; and the price (they do special weekend rates but only if you book on line or phone the central number) of £40 per room per night and that includes a buffet breakfast that has everthing from cereals, fruit, yoghurt, toast and pastries to a proper english breakfast and its an all you can eat affair too!) plus they have a late bar and a late light snack menu that's just what the doctor ordered for the aging ones amongst us where the only thing after a gig is a cup of tea and some toast! - Rock n Roll!!
...where was I before I allowed myself to get side-tracked - oh yeah, trying to find the Hotel - which we did obviously!
After some time psent unpacking and unwinding from the journey we went off to find some nourishment (by this stage the Buxtonl branch of the Destruction Crew was in train) and a mere 27 paces from the front door of the hotel was an "ALL YOU CAN EAT CHINESE BUFFETT - £10 per head(well just under).Nuff said!
Sated and refreshed it was off to find the venue which was literally round the corner (or two) from the hotel.
We arrived at the venue as the headline band were going through a bit off a sound check (around 19:10 or ten past seven in old money!!) The sound guy made me chuckle he reckons PUNK BANDS are far easier to work with as they set up; get up; get on; play; get off - much easier to work with than techno bands allegedly..,
Fungal was "doing the door" with the family there too. All the bands appeared to be there. So as 19:30 approached (official kick off time for this smorgesboard of the choicest cuts of prime punk rock) the first band took to the stage and we were off and running!
5 new bands to add to the list from tonights gig - 1 of which Born To Destruct had been due to play with on a couple of occasions but for varying reasons this had not happened, until tonight anyway.
The first of the five first timers - FIRING BLANKS
A band from Chesterfield - appearing as a three piece (later it was announed that the singer/sax player was missing) which was interesting to note as a couple of the songs before this was mentioned sounded a bit 'lacking'. But being fair to the band they gave their all; what they played was energetic, entertaining ska influenced punk with a dash of reggae chucked in for extra spice all done with a smile on its face and a bounce in its step. Definitely a band to see again - if they were this good as a trio then its odds on they will be a damn fine listen when at full strength. This lot are the sort know how to get a party started and they did themselves, Fungal and those gathered together in one place to witness this homage to the underdog, proud indeed!
for more info about the band -> http://www.facebook.com/pages/firing-blanks/112641934322?sk=info
KERPLUNK another young band again from Chesterfield. Another trio although this time thats what they are! I was struck by the bands energy and drive and although they played a shortish set what they delivered they did extremely well. The sound for the first song wasn't great - the guitar was definitely a bit thin - but a few tweaks by the maestro at the sound desk sorted that and from the second song onwards things were fine. GREAT PUBLICITY STUNT; LIFE STORY; & THE MANIFESTO stood out for me. They even had the confidence to throw in a NOFX cover. It is good to see young bands play with passion and enjoyment however much the underdog scene struggles, whilst there are bands coming through then the fight will continue.
TOTAL CONFUSION - Now what ever one says about this band they cannot be said to be in the first flush of youth (approaching 48 myself I feel qualified to make statements like this!) HOWEVER, what these Barnsley boys lack in youth they more than make up for in experience and full on, in yer face, delivery. I love the full fat sound, there is a great amount of energy unleashed during a performance. An absolute treat and delight. The sort of band that if they are on the bill then it will be a good night - they are doing it for all the right reasons - high amongst these is the pure joy of performing - coz trust me at 'our' age that is the only reason for doing what we do! A great bunch of musicians and a darn fine collection of blokes! The set was
DEATH TO ALL
JUST ANOTHER TUESDAY
WARHEADI'M AN UPSTART
It's hard to pick a favourite out of that lot so I shall endure the splinters from setting on the fence, because there was not a bad song in that list even the covers were worthy interpretations of the originals. I shall be looking out of these guys again and if we get the chance to play with them in the future that would be rather cool!
BORN TO DESTRUCT that would be us then. We had a blast! What a venue! We had a fantastic night and whilst a few more people in to watch ALL the bands would have been nice, we got the chance to see 5 bands we had never seen before and listen to some great music. Please a chance to meet some new friends and some old - great to see some of the Mardi Gras Bombers were in town along with a couple of the Most Likely To Fail boys. As it is impossible to review our own performance have a decko at what the man himself - Fungal Punk - had to say about us!
Our set list was;
WASTED - FLYIN - BOLLOCKS
NOTHING - dedicated to all bands who have played to no punters!
THIS IS NOT
BORN TO RAISE HELL
WELCOME TO THE MAD HOUSE
Last but one - SENSELESS. Finally - they have been on the same bill as us on a couple of occasions but the fates have decreed that this was not to be so it was good to finally catch these guys. Were they worth the wait. Hell yes. A tight musical unit, this power punk trio know their stuff! Full on, balls out, in yer face, explosive punk rock of the finest quality. Definite shades of FLAT BACK FOUR about this lot. Thoroughly enjoyed the set. They got an excellent reception which was rightly deserved.
Last but by no means least - SEWER SUCKERS - they say leave the best till last. Again full on, in yer face delivery the twin guitars providing the drive and the heartbeat of each song. The drums were solid supporting and complimenting as they should. Issues of a "technical" nature did cause some problems with the bass. A couple of times leads became dislodged leading to frantic action from the sound guy and the bands other guitarist. It is safe to say as the bass player seemed to get more mellow the same could not be said of the other gutarist who appeared to be getting increasingly frustrated at proceedings on the far side of the stage. Still this added extra edge and spice and these techicalities aside this was a great performance from a storming band! The great shame was by the time they took the stage - the scheduling of public transport meant a number of the crowd had to leave before the band palyed, add to that a few more that had long journeys to make, the number left watch was on the thinnish side (mind you with me in the crowd thin is not a word I would use!) But those who stayed were richly rewarded with some fine, fine music.
A fitting way to bring an excellent night to an end. Yes more punters would have been nice, but there was a COCKNEY REJECTS gig in town the previous evening so one would be safe in assuming that a lot of people went to that. I am sure they had a good time. But for a fraction of the price they could have also seen another half dozen fine bands the next evening and made it a proper punk weekend. But people will do what they do, and at the end of the day its a personal choice thing!.
THANK YOU TO EVERYONE INVOLVED IN MAKING THIS GIG HAPPEN - The bands, The venue & its staff, all those that came to support and watch, and to FUNGAL for being the upright dude he is. I know he left feeling a little dejected at the number of attendees amongst other things but I can assure him that we had a mighty fine time and for us it was worth the treck from Cambridge just to have the opportunity to play on a FUNGAL gig.
Here's to the next time we meet!
Review by Moose Man