Category: Live

The Temperance Movement Live Are A Deeper Cut Above The Rest

I was lucky enough a few weeks before Christmas to see The Temperance Movement during their ‘Small Rooms New Tunes’ tour – you can read about that here. The small room was Soho institution The Borderline. The new tunes were first public outings for tracks that would later appear on the band’s third studio release A Deeper Cut. Well the new record is here and I’ve just had the pleasure of experiencing the new tunes again; this time though on the first date of the Deeper Cut tour in the rather larger environs of Concorde 2 in Brighton. It’s...

Read More

Jamie Lenman Is A Bright White Blaze Live @ Academy Islington

It is a rare musician who can escape being labelled.  There is no simple description for an artist like Jamie Lenman. He has created whole albums of folk and blues, of hardcore (especially with his former band Reuben) and, most recently electro-pop.   What kind of music does he perform live?  Will he whip out a banjo, bop along to a drum machine or rock out with a full band? Nothing could prepare me for this show. Jamie Lenman arrives on stage to the ticking pulse of electro-pop single Hard Beat.  Live drummer Dan Kavanagh lays down the beat.  There...

Read More

The Amazons Conjour Up Black Magic At Cambridge Junction

The Amazons have had a busy 2017, releasing their debut album, being included in the BBC Sound of 2017 and MTV Brand New 2017 lists, and being named a band to listen to in 2017 by NME, The Independent, and Radio 1. 2018 looks just as busy, they’re in the middle of a UK tour and already appearing on a lot of this year’s festivals line-ups.  We became part of their ‘tribe’ at the Cambridge Junction. The Junction is a great venue for getting close up to the action. It is purpose built on the old cattle market site and holds a capacity of...

Read More

Natalie Imbruglia Delights Union Chapel

When a 22-year-old Natalie Imbruglia broke onto the music scene in 1997 following her departure from hit Australian daytime soap Neighbours, the UK set their expectations firmly in the Kylie camp. But as big a hit as her debut single Torn was, Imbruglia’s style was very much planted in the pop/rock genre, a style that produced wonderful debut record Left Of The Middle which threw her out into the public domain and up there with the likes of contemporaries Fiona Apple and Alanis Morissette. But Imbruglia wasn’t made for arenas and massive festival stages, her dulcet tones and delicate...

Read More

Jim Jones & The Righteous Mind Rise Above The Chaos @ Dingwalls

I don’t like to start any review by moaning about things outside the bands control but sometimes it can’t be helped and this gig was one of those occasions due to the venue not handling the swap over between the early and late gig they had on at all well. Also Camden Councils efforts to take all the fun out of going gigs in Camden, the Council now insist everyone shows photo ID to get into gigs and are fully frisked and searched which goes against the spirit of a legendary venue like Dingwalls where such things have never...

Read More

Dirty Sister Stir Up Water Rats

Showcase nights that throw together different groups of musicians spanning a mix of styles are always fun to go along to, opening your ears to a range of talent. And so tonight we bounced from the rocking tones of Doctor Da Vinci to the growling screams of metalers Rank Outsiders and onto the delicate, dulcet tones of solo keyboardist/vocalist Conrad before bouncing London duo Dirty Sister grace the Water Rats’ stage. The indistinguishable tones of a Bouzouki, a Greek stringed instrument for the uninitiated, kick off the duo’s set, the instrument’s imposing form and intricate detailing ensuring Tom Bridle...

Read More

Tyler Childers Is A Burning Ember On A Cold Night Live @Omeara

If you are fortunate enough to catch this Kentuckian singer songwriter during his pass through the UK, you are ahead of the curve.  As is typical of this brilliant South East London venue Omeara are championing new talent on verge of a big break.  Tyler Childers is a much talked about artist who has been promoted thanks to plenty of air play on the essential Americana podcast W.B. Walkers Old Soul Radio Show. Childers is a tall, broad almost imposing figure when he arrives on stage.  His flame red hair betrays his ancestry and hints at a long-held question,...

Read More

This Is The Kit Are Engagingly Enigmatic At Shepherd’s Bush Empire

There aren’t enough songs with whistling. Maybe that’s because most end up sounding either cloying (Bobby McFerrin’s Don’t Worry Be Happy) or downright irritating (The Scorpions’ Winds Of Change). So when somebody does get it right, the effect is spellbinding. Like when This Is The Kit’s Kate Stables, plucking out the chords of Two Wooden Spoons alone, whistles the vocal melody. Together, the stark instrumentation and the haunting sound from her lips easily create a feeling of intimacy and vulnerability in a venue as vast as Shepherd’s Bush Empire. And this is even before she’s begun to sing or...

Read More

Laurence Jones Reveals The Truth At Borderline

Laurence Jones is 25, which makes him just an infant in Blues years. But he plays with the talent and conviction of a veteran. Turns out, he is. He first picked up the guitar at 8, discovered Eric Clapton at 12, and released his debut album at 20. Over the course of four subsequent LPs, he’s evolved exponentially as a singer, guitarist, and songwriter capable of injecting his own DNA into a fusion of the old (Jimi Hendrix, Gary Moore) and the new (Royal Blood). Never has that been more apparent than on the upcoming The Truth. His boldest...

Read More

Steel Panther Bring The Bombast To Shepherd’s Bush Empire

Steel Panther have done for music what Donald Trump has for America: make it great again. With rocket-fuel party anthems, they’ve not just restored widdly-widdly guitar solos, anthemic keyboard melodies, and booming drums to their rightful place in the rock pantheon, they’ve completely undermined the bleeding heart establishment who feel the need to explore such trivialities as socio-economic injustice and the effects of climate change. With subtlety and restraint to rival ‘80s masterpiece Every Rose Has Its Thorn, they’ve single-handedly resurrected the long-lost art of crafting the perfect lighter-waving, heart-breaking power ballad. And with straight-talking lyrics like “Find a...

Read More

King King Let Love In At Shepherd’s Bush Empire

“I love what I do,” King King front man Alan Nimmo told me a few months ago, “and I want the audience to love it with me.” The clearly thrilled singer and guitarist achieves exactly that at the band’s biggest London headline show to date. As soon as the quartet hit the Shepherd’s Bush Empire stage to the strains of Free’s All Right Now, Nimmo starts sharing the love. With the broad grin of a gregarious host, his fists raised in excitement, he welcomes the punters with a cheery “Happy new year” before even playing a single note. That...

Read More

Starcrawler “They Will Kill You” Live @ Omeara, London

Across their social media comes a strong message from young band Starcrawler, “We will kill you”.  A notice hangs on the wall of the entranceway of bijoux South East venue Omeara, ‘Warning:  Tonight there will be a potentially disturbing immersive performance’, now that’s a hell of a promise. Omeara is a gem of a venue, formed from a defunct railway arch and tucked into the ally, it is like a secret cave comprising of a small stage with a low gradient floor (complete with near invisible hazard marked steps), and a small corner bar selling cans of beer.  The...

Read More

Black Country Communion Sway Into Hammersmith

Black Country Communion may, as Glenn Hughes says more than once tonight, be a band built on friendship. But they’re also a band built on supreme talent. Best known for his time with Dream Theater, the six-packed Derek Sherinian is one of those players who can sprinkle a delicate keyboard melody onto the end of Sway or lean into the mellotron swells of a thunderous The Outsider with equal flair. Jason Bonham is such a seismic performer that Hughes admits he sometimes can’t tell the difference between him and his father, Led Zeppelin’s John Bonham, undoubtedly the greatest rock...

Read More

Fallen Angels Offer Smoke Signals to the Ancient Gods:  Fields of the Nephilim Live

With few commercial releases in the last decade Fields of the Nephilim have relied on their status as one of the original and most influential British goth rock bands to maintain their fan base.   From their musical style to their carefully cultivated look, they set a standard, a feel and a design for the entire goth subculture.  The motifs and symbols of their band logo and artwork, the uniform theatrical costume, and of course the themes in their music of romanticism, mysticism, and the occult.  They do also share some of the goth tropes which are often mocked by...

Read More

Five Finger Death Punch Knock Out Wembley Arena

  Metal is all about volume and intensity. Which is exactly what Of Mice And Men supply as they kick off a night of guttural vocals, guitar riffs of sledgehammer subtlety, soul-shaking drum fills, chest thumping, and sweaty, screaming, moshing fans at Wembley Arena. Led by Aaron Pauley, who sings and assaults his bass with equal ferocity, the quartet from Orange County, California play a tight six-song set that balances the old and the brand new. The fittingly named Unbreakable, which opens the show, and guaranteed future live staple Warzone are both from the forthcoming Defy (out in January),...

Read More

Extreme Get The Funk Out Live At Brixton Academy

Extreme formed an essential part of the soundtrack to my youth. Their debut album may have looked (and let’s be honest here) sounded like an offering from a formulaic late eighties hair metal band, but with the release of Pornograffitti and III Sides To Every Story, the Boston four-piece cemented themselves as artists of real creative integrity. Their amalgam of hard rock, pop and funk – cemented by creamy harmony vocals gave them a sound that was uniquely theirs. And then there was Nuno. Nuno Bettencourt, born in the Azores of Portuguese descent quickly established himself as one of...

Read More

Bombs Away As One OK Rock Hit Shepherd’s Bush Empire

One OK Rock are, to use a familiar phrase, big in Japan. So big in fact that last summer, across two shows at Shizuoka’s Nagisaen Park, the band played to a total of 110 000 fans. Captured in the forthcoming concert film 2016 Special Live In Nagisaen, the gigs were on the same epic scale as historic live events like Queen at Wembley Stadium or Green Day at Milton Keynes Bowl. Although the quartet haven’t yet achieved such popularity outside their home country, they’re making a real go of becoming “Japan’s first globally recognised band”. Their last three albums...

Read More

Reconciliation Of Love and Fury:  Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes @ Brixton Academy

Ex-Gallows and Pure Love frontman Frank Carter is one of the most exciting performers to witness live.  Never predictable, with hardcore punk band Gallows he was an explosion of vitriolic rage, lyrics streaming out of him to vent pain and nihilistic despair.  With Pure Love, the pendulum swung to the other extreme as Carter flirted with pop and found himself to be a brilliantly round peg in a square hole. Thanks to collaborator and band mate, former Heights guitarist Dean Richardson he may have found a successful carrier for his divided musical heart and a new sound.  With this...

Read More

Robert Plant Shifts Space And Time At Royal Albert Hall

Like every well-worn rock ‘n roll story, Robert Plant’s has definite touchstones. He possesses one of the genre’s finest voices. He’s the original golden god who, with Led Zeppelin, defined what it is to be a rock star. He’s not one for nostalgia, turning his back on lucrative reunions to focus on creating music that pays no heed to genre. He loves Morocco, Wolverhampton Wanderers, and having a pint in his North London local . But he could also be considered something of an anthropologist or musicologist. Clearly fueled by an innate curiosity, Plant is well versed in the...

Read More

Benjamin Clementine Lays Down A Challenge At Brixton Academy

  Benjamin Clementine knows the conventions that live gigs follow. “I play, you clap,” he observes at one point during his Brixton Academy performance. So the hits from his 2015 Mercury Prize-winning debut, At Least For Now, get an airing. A generous selection of tracks from its ambitious, experimental follow-up I Tell A Fly, are slipped into the set. There’s audience participation. There’s between-song conversation. And of course there’s an encore.   But the self-described expressionist whose latest album started out as a theatre piece about two romantically entangled flies exploring the world, isn’t one for blindly following those...

Read More

JW Jones Raises The Temperature @ London’s Borderline

JW Jones is an award-winning Canadian blues guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He has released eight studio albums, performed in 19 countries, toured four continents, and played with legends like Buddy Guy, Canned Heat, and Red Hot Chili Peppers phenomenon Chad Smith. This winter he brought his flying Gibson to the UK to promote his latest studio album, High Temperature. The tour came to London’s Borderline last weekend for what was, in my opinion, one of the best gigs of the year. Starting with Wham, a crazy jam from the current album, Jones set the tone for the evening, a night of...

Read More

Reinventing Himself On The Road: John Bramwell Live @ Union Chapel

After many years as frontman of Manchester-based band I Am Kloot, in 2013 John Bramwell took a change of direction and set out on a “Never-ending” solo tour that charted a course that has criss-crossed this country and into the continent. It’s a journey that has wended its way though clubs and pubs, churches and village halls giving plenty of time for musing on life and love, hope and heartbreak, desire and despair en route. Returning to Union Chapel in London tonight, John is promoting his first full solo album Leave Alone The Empty Spaces, self-released in November 2017,...

Read More

The Pretty Reckless Run Wild At Brixton Academy

The stage is what makes or breaks a band. There are no do-overs, no overdubs, no ProTools to iron out those imperfections. It’s just you, your songs, and (especially if you’re an opening band) an audience to win over. The Pretty Reckless, who’ve been doing this since 2009, know the score, especially when they’re playing to fans as rabid as Stone Sour’s. So, no time for ballads like You and House On The Hill. Instead, the 50-minute opening set is packed with a succession of their heaviest songs, each performed with a matter of life or death intensity rarely...

Read More

The Age Of Phil Campbell And The Bastard Sons: Live @ Sheffield Academy

It is not often that rock legends make a stop in Sheffield, but this Monday in November a guitarist, his three sons, and singer Neil Starr rolled into town to raise the roof of the O2 Academy, supporting Aussie-rockers Airbourne. It was therefore no surprise that the venue was packed even on a school night. However, before Phil Campbell and his Bastard Sons went on stage, hillbilly rock’n’rollers from Canada, The Wild! made sure that everyone knew that jeans vests are back! In a patch-covered sea of jeans on jeans, the four heavy hardrockers took to the Academy’s stage...

Read More

REWS: Expectations High

Sometimes you just have to be in the right place at the right time. The right place was the Hawley Arms during the Camden Rocks Festival on a glorious early June day this year. The right time was around half past four in the afternoon when a band of which I was previously unaware called REWS occupied the stage. They were excellent – to me, by far the most enjoyable act of the day. Ironically, Since the Camden Rocks appearance I’ve done little else but hear about REWS. Later in the month, they graced the John Peel Stage at...

Read More

Jim White Plays Guitars & Talks Jesus At Dingwalls & St Mary’s Guildford.

Jim White is back on tour to promote his current album the very cool Waffles, Triangles & Jesus that is out now on Loose Music. This is the second time I’ve been to hear Jim play the last time was at St Pancras Old Church and like at that gig his support act are also his backing band for the tour. This time rather than the multi-instrumentalist Paul Fonfara this time it’s the Trio Cicada Rhythm from Georgia. Cicada Rhythm open with America’s Open Road that’s a cool paean to the wonders of driving across America that allows the...

Read More

Bad Touch Feel Good At Islington Academy

All bands, if they’re around long enough, reach that point where youthful urgency overlaps with experience. Bad Touch are now in that zone. Currently on their first UK headline tour (“eight years in the making,” as frontman Stevie Westwood puts it), the group have two full-length studio albums and two EPs of material, the skills gained from supporting big names like The Kentucky Headhunters around the country, and the lessons learnt from playing hundreds of shows. But, almost a decade in, they’ve lost none of the unbridled passion and dynamism of their early days as a bar band in...

Read More

The Temperance Movement: New Tunes In A Small Room

  Malcolm Young died earlier this week. As I squeeze into a space at the front at Soho institution the Borderline, the PA soundtrack is non-stop AC/DC. It’s a good metaphor for tonight’s headline, The Temperance Movement. They’re both gravel-throat fronted blues-rock bands with emphasis on the rock. They’re both at home in front of a stadium crowd (‘The Temp’ – as TTM frontman Phil Campbell calls them, supported The Rolling Stones on their 2014 European and 2015 US tours). They’re both an absolute blast live. As Malcolm and Angus fill the pre-support void I’m left wondering whether there...

Read More

Royal Blood Have It All Figured Out At Alexandra Palace

Following At The Drive-In takes balls, especially when the Texas quintet finish their 45-minute assault with a rendition of One Armed Scissor that’s the sonic equivalent of a napalm attack. But Brighton-based Mike Kerr and Ben Thatcher certainly aren’t lacking in confidence. And rightly so. In the five years since forming Royal Blood the duo have taken their crunching blues riffs and titanic choruses from open-mic nights in Worthington to headlining London’s Alexandra Palace three nights in a row. It’s been a rapid rise, certainly, but gradual enough for the singer-bassist and drummer to scale up their production and...

Read More

Michael Chapman & Julie Byrne Combine At The Union Chapel, London

Venues and artists don’t always make happy bedfellows, but the combination of Michael Chapman and Julie Byrne playing at London’s Union Chapel on Monday 13th November was a rare occasion of an acoustic match made in heaven. Billed as a ‘special guest’, legendary guitarist Chapman took to the stage under the church’s rose-tinted windows, appearing in his trademark baseball cap, illuminated by a spotlight, through occasional billows of dry smoke. Delivering a mesmerising performance to a hushed audience, his finger-picking playing style and stony voice cut through the room, while occasionally interspersing his set with tales of more than...

Read More

Joanne Shaw Taylor Beats The Blues At Royal Festival Hall

Joanne Shaw Taylor is suffering from a cold. But, other than her drinking hot water and honey (not gin, she promises) between songs and an added hint of huskiness to her voice, you wouldn’t know. The singer and guitarist is all energy and smiles as she (sometimes quite literally) bounds through a set that stretches all the way from her 2009 debut White Sugar to last year’s Wild. Three songs from the current release (the swinging Dyin’ To Know, aptly titled all-out rocker Nothing To Lose, and the touching No Reason To Stay) kick off the show, before she...

Read More

Dan Patlansky Offers Style And Substance At Royal Festival Hall

Gone are the leather jacket and checked lumberjack shirt. When Dan Patlansky steps out onto the Royal Festival Hall stage it’s in waistcoat and suit jacket. “As soon as I put on these clothes, I feel like I’m about to to go to work. It changes your headspace a little,” he tells me later. “And also with all these tattoos popping up everywhere,” he gestures towards the intricate inking on his neck, “I love the contrast of wearing something suave.” A less visual, but certainly more important, change is the interplay with his band. For his previous visit to...

Read More

Rock Medicine With The Blues Pills @ Sheffield Academy

Earlier this week, my favourite band from Sweden stopped over in Sheffield, as they joined Black Star Riders for the UK leg of their European tour. And no, Agnetha and Björn hadn’t decided to stage their comeback in South Yorkshire. With big grins on their faces, the five Blues Pills took to the stage, clearly there to have a great time. With her boundless bouncy energy powerhouse frontwoman Elin Larsson did not hang around long to get the show started. Kicking off with the title track of their second studio album, Lady in Gold, Blues Pills launched right into...

Read More

The War On Drugs Live: All Show, No Showing Off

Adam Granduciel is a musical genius. But The War On Drugs’ singer, guitarist, songwriter, producer, and sonic mastermind is not a natural showman. There’s little time for pleasantries, just a few hurried “thank you’s” and one “I’m so psyched to be here”. There’s no waving of arms or pointing at the crowd, so even coming to the front of the stage during one of his fluid guitar solos is completely out of the question. Granduciel’s obviously aware of his self-restraint on stage, telling the Guardian just a few weeks ago he wishes he could “Bono it up a little...

Read More

Maren Morris Lights Up The Shepherd’s Bush Empire

Country Music’s latest rising star Maren Morris brought her Nashville sound to London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire last night, the third date on a six-show UK and Ireland tour following on from her appearance at London’s O2 Arena in March as part of the 2017 edition of C2C, the UK’s Country to Country music festival which is growing year on year as demand for Country acts both from the U.S. and home-grown continues to rise. The night opened with Morris’ fiancé, Country songwriter-turned-singer Ryan Hurd, playing the Shepherd’s Bush Empire a few of his own tunes including the massive You...

Read More

Alice Cooper Hot & Hip Live At Leeds

 I’ve seen a number of artists recently that are passed their normally ‘used by’ date, but tonight the usual careful hiding of wrinkles and disguising of chins isn’t needed, because it all adds to the image of the Godfather of Shock Horror Rock. Alice Cooper approaches his 70th Birthday (Feb 2018) with the same vim and vigour as he would have done at his 30th – 69th, bringing along a hot new band and some old friends for company. Looking around the Leeds Arena tonight we have a big collection of old relics, ok that’s a bit harsh, let’s...

Read More

Magic Wands Were Out On Guy Fawkes Night

The Picture House Social in Sheffield has long been known for being one of the cities “in” places when it comes to amazing niche music, so it came as no surprise that Magic Wands chose it as the venue to stop off at on their Abrakadabra tour. Supporting Magic Wands were Sheffield’s own dream-pop five-piece Grigio, who have slowly been making a name for themselves in the local music scene. From the start Grigio’s sound reminded me of the old dusty Velvet Underground tapes that are still hiding in my basement somewhere, but updated to the 21st century. With...

Read More

Michael Schenker Fest Celebrates Rock At Shepherd’s Bush Empire

The Michael Schenker Group are a band with such a complex history that their Wikipedia page has one of those colour-coded timelines to track the various line-ups through the decades. Formed by Scorpions and UFO alumnus Michael Schenker, since 1979 the group has had 14 lead singers, 11 drummers, 12 bass players, an extended hiatus, and even a name change (from Michael Schenker Group to McAuley Schenker Group from 1986 to 1993). Schenker, lead guitarist extraordinaire, has been the sole constant. By comparison, the idea behind Michael Schenker Fest is clear and simple. Reunite ‘80s era MSG band members:...

Read More

Weezer Get Their Hooks Into Wembley Arena

Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo isn’t your typical rock star. He keeps a Google Sheets database of lyrics, tagged by rhyme and meter. He sticks to a strict writing schedule: Monday’s for words, Tuesday is melodies, verses, and structure, and Wednesday’s all about new hooks. He’s clearly no slacker either, having released six albums since 2008. Oh, and he wears a sweater vest (without irony) for the band’s debut headline performance at Wembley Arena tonight. But looks (and work ethic) can be deceiving. Cuomo and his three bandmates may never rival KISS in the rock ‘n roll showmanship stakes, but even...

Read More

Public Service Broadcasting: Every Valley Live

Public Service Broadcasting are a band that know how to polarise opinion. If people get it, they really get it. I’ve found if they don’t, they really don’t. If you’ve not yet attained ‘I really get/don’t get this’ status and are currently unaware of the PSB shtick, it runs as follows: they look like they’re on university lecturer day release; bow ties and corduroy jackets abound. The band don’t really go a bundle on singing either, so in the absence of that they trawl film and audio libraries looking for vocal samples which they then put to music. To...

Read More

NO SECOND THOUGHTS

YOU TELL ME

CENTURY CITY

SPOTIFY DISCOVER

Anything That’s Rock n Roll



Feed

A Rockshot Mag Prime Post: The Proclaimers, Richard Thompson, Beth Orton and Big Country are among t [...]

A Rockshot Mag Prime Post: Celebrated Minnesota sextet Trampled By Turtles have announced details of [...]

A Rockshot Mag Prime Post: I was lucky enough a few weeks before Christmas to see The Temperance Mov [...]

A Rockshot Mag Prime Post: When there are two bands that both make use of the name ‘Yes‘, both featu [...]

WALLS




Upcoming Festivals

  1. Live @ Leeds 2018

    May 5
  2. Bearded Theory Spring Gathering

    May 24 - May 27
  3. Catfish & The Bottlemen @ All Points East

    June 1
  4. Field Day 2018

    June 1 - August 2
  5. Festival Of Voice Cardiff

    June 7 - June 17
  6. Download Festival

    June 8 - June 10
  7. Love Supreme Jazz Festival

    June 29 - July 1
  8. bluedot

    July 19 - July 22
  9. Cool Britannia

    August 31 - September 2

Call Me Up

Get new posts by email:

Aerosmith 50th Anniversary