The Vinyls at The Shed

The Vinyls, Matt MacNeill
The Vinyls, Matt MacNeill

Sunday 8th December

The Vinyls’ night at The Shed

Another good night at The Shed. Three bands and a singer entertained a goodly-sized crowd (for a Sunday night.)

Young Blaby band Casino Empire provided an extremely good start to the evening. After being together for only 18 months, Casino Empire has become an extraordinarily good group.

Casino Empire's Tommy Cobley
Casino Empire’s Tommy Cobley

Tommy Cobley’s role, as lead vocalist, delivered a strong voice and a theatrical level of stage presence that combined the swagger of Jagger with the mannerisms of Mercury.

What stood out about this band was the way that the instrumentalists provided a tightly controlled but scintillating set of sounds, the Casino Empire performance being full of vigor, energy and pizzaz. Well orchestrated guitar work blended with a good vocal layer.

Casino Empire at The Shed
Casino Empire at The Shed

Backing the lead of Cobley were the vocals of Matt Gore on guitar and Jack Hall on Bass, giving the room fervently infectious rhythms, beltin’ beats and blistering guitar flourishes –  they had it all.

Sounding like The Arctic Monkeys crossed with Oasis, they brought us all that was best in contemporary indie rock. Casino Empire is a band that most live music fans would want to see. Yes they did some well-known covers but they also played their own songs and, I have to say, they know how to write a good tune. Casino Empire’s cover version of the Oasis classic Rock ‘n’ Roll was particularly good – they smashed it with this.

They ended their set with one of their own songs, their signature tune Iguana, one that was punchy, ballsy and well written.

Casino Empire ticked all the boxes.


Follow Casino Empire on Facebook.

Dirty Fair, from Northampton, a four piece  band mixing indie with post-punk and garage rock delivered plenty of on-stage action. They had played with Midnight Wire this summer and were pleased to see some of the ‘Wire’s band members in the audience.

Dirty Fair
Dirty Fair


With three good vocalists at the front, Dirty Fair provided an agreeable selection of songs that had engaging melodic lines, foot-stomping beats and ear-pleasing guitar lines – they kept the show on the move. Dirty Fair’s development of driving rhythms, rapturous melodies and playful harmonies have seen them share the stage with the likes of ‘Peace’ and fill a slot at Beach Break Live!  Copy that.


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Liverpool’s Thomas McConnell provided the solo acoustic slot of the evening, also on his 2013 UK Tour.

In 2012, McConnell was hand-chosen by China Crisis to support them on their anniversary tour and more recently, he has been supporting Ian McNabb on his recent tour. He also provided backing vocals to Ian Prowse’s version of Bruce Springsteen’s, “Rosilita” for a charity-single.

Thomas McConnell
Thomas McConnell

Thomas McConnell has a new EP out now, on CD or download,  called, Worried About Thomas McConnell, which features four tracks and is getting great reviews.

Blessed with a good voice, which he used with clear articulation, his songs were vibrant and enjoyable. An artist with character, his voice had a definite Mersey twang, Thomas provided us with a set full of variety, sometimes playing on guitar and sometimes on keyboard.


Follow Tomas McConnell on Facebook.

On their first UK tour, The Vinyls, from Brighton, had stopped off in Leicester (their first time here) to share with us their remarkable brand of quirky, fun-loving and engaging songs.

The Vinyls, Matt MacNeill
The Vinyls, Matt MacNeill

With Hal Cleverdon, Lead guitar, Matt MacNeill, lead vocals, Barney Guy on the drums and Marcus Gilham on bass they were a sound and likeable bunch of guys.

In a set full of pace and motion, The Vinyls delivered a resounding finale to this night of enjoyable music. Their songs got the room dancing like crazy.  These bouncy Brighton boys set the room alight with a festival of foot-tapping, get-up-and-dance tunes.

The Vinyls at The Shed
The Vinyls at The Shed

Armed with three good front singers and a gold medal drummer they partied with a passion.

What a great band!

Follow the Vinyls on Facebook | On their web site

Listen to their songs: On YouTube

See also:

Live music diary for December

Live Music diary for November

Live music  diary for October

About The Editor 536 Articles
The Editor of Music in Leicester magazine is Kevin Gaughan assisted by Trevor Locke