A long day and one that has had my heart fluttering like a whippet on whizz thus leaving me aggravated and a bit drained again (stay clear - this fucker is gonna blow if things don't get sorted). Nearly 2 years of heart problems and the NHS still pisses me about and sends me here and there. So, the choice - stop in and take a rest or get to a gig that was really niggling my noise-ridden soul - you know the answer - idiot or passionate - I am a victim to my own incessant mania. I'll be utterly brief on this one due to the fact that I couldn't get the review done next morning because I took a group of Young Carers wild-life watching at Tatton Park and have walked 5 miles and am jaded by the sun.

So arriving at the gaff, a chat with Andy on the door and up to a rammed room, full of sweating fans and players with Dean on the door kept busy by a steady trade. Apologies for the terse approach - better something than nothing and if you wanna do one then be my guest instead of relying on this moth-eaten, brain beaten noise merchant.

Roughneck Riot. Boy what a grand racket! Full of gumption and sonic spunk with the players dragging their tired arses along (Rebellion takes it out of the best of em') and sticking it through a very rehearsed set that had quality tune after quality tune and just an inner core of attitude that really does attract my attention. I have seen this fair gathering of merry minstrels a brace of times before but this outing displayed a little move up in quality and a more sanguine approach that oozes something approaching professionalism (whatever that may be). The twinkle of varied strings, the vocals with guts, the slapped sticks against taut skins, the delicate manipulation of the accordion all make this a visual and aural delight with much to take into consideration via any 'live' viewing. The punked folkiness is a treat and the RR brigade deliver it with youthful enthusiasm and that, my fine doubter, will do for me. Is it me or is the soundscape the band create more condensed, more saturated? Sounds fuckin' though doesn't it?

Moving on and to Victims of Circumstance. I had never seen this unit operate before and so arrived expected nothing. From first to last this was an amazing treat of frothy skapunka with aerated clarity, cruising vibes and punchy power chords and rhythms. A wholesome energy dripped from the stage and captured all onlookers’ attention with each and every song increasing the impact factor. All players were viewed individually and all held firm and offered something worthy to the end melting pot. In parts the shuffle became infectious, in others the swaying slinkiness entwined around the inner heart and made one take true note. The frustration for me came with the task of trying to grasp the whole tidy set and finally assess which I couldn't do due to not being overly familiar with the crew’s cacophony. As way of a reflection of my end verdict I offer you these facts:- the band made me smile with the warm and brightly shining tunes, next day I checked out a few on-line tracks, note has already been made to catch em' the next time they swing into town - oh and if one word could be used to sum em' up - marvellous. Point made I think! By the way the Del Shannon cover was sublime and thoroughly lapped up - nice touch by the Florida flyers for sure!

Lastly then and those Canadian rabble rousers The Creepshow. New singer hey and what a little confident lass with a very effective gob she is. This band is a collection of fine-tuned artistes, each one superbly adept at delivering their chosen vibe and contributing to an end rhythmic flame that pulsates with controlled fervour, concrete talent and underlying power. The sonic heights reached tonight were nothing short of the 'fuckin' magnificent' level and from the opening gambit to the last throw of the skeletal dice this one was a top notch classic. Bass wires wobbled with intent on jarring the bones of the audience, guitars scratched and screamed with vicious focus, keys added hauntings and melodies to increase the persuasion of the pleasure dome. Drums were mighty, with one solo fuelled on magic man mania, agile ability and strong, well-worked belief. The chain reaction from stage to crowd was electric and each and every sonic soul was drawn in to partake of a perfect dish of satisfying musical nosh etched with many specific flavours. The horror was there, the tales of general life included, the perspiration of the players obvious and this was one of those moments you needed to witness to utterly believe. A titanic effort and well-received throughout - the music scene out there never fails to overwhelm me.

So there ya go - I came expecting much and went away with more. My ticker played up after the gig which should teach me a lesson but what can I do? I am a rock and roll slave who can't resist a fix but I'll try and make sure I stick around a lot longer for the sake of my fine lasses, the wonderful natural world that I try and inform people about and of course...the darn amazing din waiting to be discovered.

Cheers again to Dean Diggle and to the bands and the buggers at The Star and Garter who are trying to hang in there and keep this great joint in existence. And of course…here's to the next one!

Review by OMD (8 August 2012)