I review the gig at The Cookie headlined by Son of Glenn.
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Page last edited: 21st January 2019
The Soundhouse for Glastonbudget with Finches of Attica and Traps.
It’s good to keep up with the Glastonbudget festival auditions.
Tonight’s audition show was opened by singer Ellé Robertson. She put in a good performance. Enjoyable songs. A strong voice. Well sung numbers. Much appreciated by the audience.
Missing Mile. A four-piece group with three vocalists. They played at the 2018 Glastonbudget Festival. And we saw them at the 2016 Western Park festival. Earlier in the same year, we reported on their appearance at the Noel Arms in Melton Mowbray. [Music in Leicester] Tonight they were on good form with their offering of Americana-inspired tunes.
And now for something completely different. Something tribal. G and the Sound Tribe gave us a healthy dose of their hip-hop inspired funk. Tunes laden with reggae rhythms. Vibes that had people dancing. Good vocals and plenty of action on stage. Well-crafted songs presented by two vocalists. They created a party atmosphere. What’s not to like?
Finches of Attica. A band I have seen many times before. In fact, we reviewed them on 16th November [Music in Leicester] One of Leicester’s most exciting bands, they certainly know how to rock out and their lead singer Tom Howarth – is an exhilarating performer. Big, compelling sounds. Engaging rhythms. Solid songs. Good on stage. A formula that works really well. The band’s set ending with their remarkable rendition of House of the Rising Sun. They played their way. Nailed it. I like their version more than the one by The Animals (1964). Although Eric Burdon was pretty good in that. Someone once described it as “the first folk rock hit.” Under the hands of Finches it is a hard rock hit, in my view.
The finale was given by Leicester’s Traps. So much has been said before about this band, it’s hard to know where to begin. Led by singer Jamie Williams, this is a band that has brought many moments of excitement to gigs and festivals, since they began. The band has performed at the Glastonbudget festival before. I remember seeing them at the O2 in 2017 when they supported Milburn. [Music in Leicester] A top-flight band. Their mix of rock, rhythm, melody and ear-licking harmonies is what makes them so. The great thing about Glastonbudget is that you get the best tribute bands and the best local acts. All in one great weekend package. So much to choose from. And when Traps takes to the stage they get a big tent to play in. so many people want to see them. A truly festival band.
I went to the Soundhouse. I had been in town at a party for writers so I thought it would be good to catch a bit of music afterwards. The headline act was Paul Roberts, a local singer who I have seen quite a few times before. His set was very good and some other artists made guest appearances with him. He has been around for some time but, as others said that night, he has come on well.
It was also good to see Sam Beach, another singer I have seen before and Steve Shuter, the beatboxer. Steve’s abilities to make music with just is throat, mouth and lips is quite extraordinary.
Another singer, who I had not seen before, who gave an impressive performance was Grace Harrhy.
A very good voice and she used it extremely well. Passionate and emphatic. Well worth seeing again.
The thing about the open-mic night on Tuesday is that there is always something worth seeing. Rhett Barrow does a good job as compère of the night.
Kasabian. Often referred to as the best-known Leicester band. Like other famous groups has its very own Tribute Act. Not from Leicester. Based in Hull. This is a band I have seen before. When I heard they would be playing in Leicester, I resolved to see them. So. It was off into town to a bar called Hogarths. I was going to say I had not been there before. But, in fact, I have. Last time I went to it it was called The Squares. In 2007 I went to this building to see a band called Skam Hash but then it was called The Alchemist. It has changed quite a lot since I was there last. But I remember it as being a very large place. I wrote, at the time, ‘The memorable thing about the venue was that the stage was about ten feet off the ground floor on a balcony that had a gate underneath it leading to a back seating area. There was a balcony around the room from which you could look down on the bands.’ Today, the stage is at ground floor level. There was only one band – Kazabian. A band so good at playing Kasabian songs that the said band likes them. Well. They were good. The tribute band that is. I recognised quite a few of the songs. Clubfoot. One of my favourites. Well worth tracking into town for, I thought.
Tuesday evenings. I often go to Jazz at The Regent. If you share my enthusiasm for this genre of music, read my page about Jazz concerts in Leicester.
Work gets underway with the new Leicester gigs and events calendar.
My latest record reviews article is up now.
Saturday. It was one of those nights. Too much going on. Any number of gigs I could have gone to. You could say I was spoilt for choice. But then so were the music fans of Leicester. My problem was – I could only go to one of them. In the end, the historian in me won. I went to The Donkey to see Crazyhead. Again. It has been a long time since I was last at The Donkey – a live music venue since 2005. It hadn’t changed much, as far as I could see.
I guess that going to the Donkey was partly because I am writing about the history of music in Leicester. Part of that history was about the bands that rose to prominence in the 1980s. Some of which are now back on our stages playing for many still-loyal fans. I went to see them when they played in 2017.
Crazyhead formed in 1986. Several well-known musicians and played with the band. As I said in my 2017 article ‘The band was joined occasionally by the likes of Gaz Birtles, John Barrow, (Saxophonists) and Tony Robinson (Trumpet.)’ Not to forget Jesus Jones.
Other bands that are part of this grouping include Gaye Bikers on Acid, Swamp Delta, Diesel Park West, Cornershop and probably a few others. The musical style associated with Crazyhead includes Iggy Pop, Pop Will Eat Itself, The Wonder Stuff, The Ramones, The Stooges, Captain Beefheart, Prolapse, Chrome Molly… tribes of Anglo Saxons and Visigoths.
After a support slot from Dreams of Carnage. A band from Leicester. They gave us an aperitif of punk, garage, rockabilly, all suitably rough and agreeably raw. Crazyhead took to the stage. During the support band, the room had been full. It now got even fuller. A rather peculiar collection of characters, I thought, as I studied them. Clearly, many of them had been fans of this band since they started. I was not one of them. For one thing, I did not get into the pop/rock music scene until after the start of the noughties. In the mid- to late – eighties I was still listening to the music of Brahms, Beethoven, Berlioz and Bruckner. I had no idea of what was happening in Leicester because I hardly ever went into the city. In those days it was a foreboding place into which genteel countryfolk feared to venture. Especially at night.
What I liked about Crazyhead was that it was a singing band. Ian Anderson, the lead singer, was supported, vocally, by two of the other musicians. Their songs had plenty of rhythm and strong breaks. As I watched them on stage I figured that many of those in the audience would be long-time fans; they were dancing and bouncing to the beats.