On paper this looked as though it should have been a good steady enjoyable gig - in reality, well yes it was.  First up were One Man Stand the epitome of steadiness.  There's no flash nonsense from this trio just good honest musicianship.  The set was the usual favorites with no major hiccups - usual good stuff.

Next up were Emergency.  Now one thing can be said about the lead singer - he's a right foul mouthed git with an amazing talent to wind people up.  Dennis 'The Oi' Matthews is his name or twat to those who find him unsettling.  Anyway, before he got to his microphone the first of many beers was hurtled in his direction drowning the bugger immediately (Haggis you're a good shot).  Another thing about Dennis though  is that he takes it in his stride.  The impish grin and a mouthful of scathing abuse always surface and usually do the trick, however on this night it was not to be the case.  So throughout the set the crowd bombarded the band with a various assortment of alcoholic beverages, and yet, professionally - the band played on.  All the established songs were there with 'Call Yourself a Punk' and 'What's it all for' being the best.  The finale was a stage filled with fans all singing to a rip roaring rendition of  'Hey Rock 'n' Roll' ending with myself pouring the dregs of my pint over Dennis' head, all to his pleasure and enjoyment.  Overall a brilliant performance from a good bunch of blokes doing what they do best - entertaining.  Great stuff.  Vice Squad follow that.

Now picture the scene - you're in a band (established to say the least), you're a long way from home, the local band has set the place on fire and the crowd are in a beer-chucking, raucous mood gagging for more.  What do you do?  Shit yourself is a popular answer.  Step forth Vice Squad - I pity you.

Off they went with Becky in fine form (I can't actually remember the songs due to high levels of Newcastle Brown swimming in my system), but what I do remember was that they weren't delivered with conviction, energy and spirit.  The alcoholic shower was continuing from the last band despite Becky's advice that 'electricity and water don't mix'.  Well that's OK because we're not throwing water was the crowds silent opinion. And so the deluge came with that man Haggis still perfecting his throwing arm unleashing an assortment of drinks with unerring accuracy.  In fact so accurate as to force the band off.  Ooops.  After brief apologies and kissing and making up the set was completed although I was so blitzed it could have finished an hour ago.  Basically it was a below par performance from an above par band.  The general consensus from the crowd also confirmed this inebriated opinion.  Band of the night had to go to Emergency who, on this showing deserve a headlining gig.  Haggis by the way is the lead singer for 'The Spittin' Dummies' now there's a guy who could give Vice Squad some tips.

Review by OMD (26 January 2003)