Down on the farm again, with all the filthy animals. Only three bands on this week so I thought I could get away with a slightly later arrival seeing as I was driving, but again only got to catch the end of the first band Vertigo Bay. Had seen some of a quite slick video of theirs earlier in the week that had a bit of a Welsh Tourist Board feel to it, we are all products of our environment, musically they were quite polished as well with richly emotional indie tone, driven by the strummed guitar lines and a good vocal.
Didn’t really have much time to give them a proper appreciation, I had to divert to the bar. Slightly less busy than last time but still a good jovial gathering warming against the chills outside, with the open mic night session on this side to entertain us too.
Returned to the main room for somewhat of a revelation with Bonsai Massacre, a name that I had heard of locally but hadn’t caught before. Apparently this was a newer style for the band anyway; dropping the tuning to C is always going to be heading in the right direction for me! It was a really striking mix of heavy anarcho-punk but with melody, with an urgent if somewhat distorted vocal from the drummer along with this driving beats, grinding bass-lines and some confident riffing and lead. All seemed to be thoroughly enjoying the experience and the great reaction they gained too. There were flashes of Amebix, Killing Joke, even early Bolt Thrower, a new favourite for me and look forward to hearing some of this new material recorded soon.
To close us out tonight, like last time, some more ska punk from Liverpool, this time in the form of Old Radio. They had a bit more precision and punch than their fellow Scousers but just as easy-going and enjoyable. Sharply mixing the skanking breakdowns with heavier hardcore riffing, overlaying some uplifting guitar harmonies too. The energetic, dreadlocked frontman weaved side to side, motor-mouthing their socially conscious content and ably backed by a couple of the musicians to give some shout along hooks. About half way in the infectious grooves became irresistible and inspired some good natured pit dancing/falling about and made for a broad smile for all to end the evening. Next one there is on Saturday March 7th, it’ll be bouncing.