The Hinckley Music festival report
Photos and video links will be added soon.
Photos from Saturday
By Kevin Gaughan
Photos copyright Kevin Gaughan
Text by Trevor Locke
It looks like things are taking off – more bands around and more fans. But also more wind and more rain than we had yesterday.
Musically, it was a rewarding day and the festival spirit was beginning to set in.
One of the morning’s top attraction was Titan, the Leicester band that won I Wanna Be A Rock Star. They lifted the gloom of the overcast morning. The band played at Glastonbudget last month. Someone who was there felt that their set today was not as good as they had heard at Glastonbudget but, I have to say, I liked it a lot.
Titan was soon followed by The Delis Mix. Lead singer Tom Zbaraski was gyrating and jumping around the stage as he delivered his set of energetic rock songs. It takes more than the weather to put this band off their stride and, as a few umbrellas were unfurled, they got on and did the business.
Festival goers are a hardy lot, used to much worse conditions than this and not many were deterred from their enjoyment by a couple of minutes of light rain.
Vengeance kept it going. The hard rock band with the female lead, brought quite a few fans down to the crush barriers to do some rockin’ in the rain.
Another really good performance from a talented local band, Rebecca Maurice’s lead vocals carrying well into the large field, from the main stage. These are musicians who always put on a good show. They mix strong vocals with exciting guitar work and plenty of compelling drum rhythms to create inspirational songs.
Good to see quite a few band members making a weekend of it.
The sun has replaced the rain. It looks like there are quite a few people on site now but, with such as large area, they are not necessarily all in the same place at the same time.
The Acoustic tent saw Rhys David Morris entertaining people with his strong vocals and set of vibrantly enjoyable songs.
The afternoon of metal kicked off with the fabulous Internal Conflict. The horns went up and the not overly warm day began to heat up as they got into their set. Hair-raising, spine chilling sounds began to thunder from the main stage. Yeah man! They were good! Never mind the weather, IC was creating its own storm – thunder and lightning issuing from the speakers in plentiful supply.
The lead singer’s vocals was like that of Thor and his hammer-wielding kinsmen were giving abundant strength from the strings. Even though it wasn’t Thursday, it was IC’s day to show their magnificence and melt a few faces with their wonderfully powerful set.
It was a hugely set that led the charge for the metal cavalry and for several years (since 2004 in fact) IC has been towering over the bands of Leicester in this genre.
IC played a song which they dedicated to the homeless soldiers, whose cause is being honoured at this event.
It’s still pretty breezy so I spend a lot of time pushing tent pegs in to the soft earth, trying to keep the press marquee from moving from its current position in front of the main stage to some place else further down the field.
Stage 2 was graced by the presence of Raptusound, Leicester’s top electro-alternative band. Not being a metal band, they were not on the main stage, though their eminence would deserve it, in other circumstances. The band’s music attracted an audience and was a singularly gratifying contribution to the musical menu of the day.
The Furies played on stage 2. Another of Leicester’s most illustrious bands, they created a tidal swell on the second stage that pulled people away from the adjacent metal fest. The crowd should have been moving from stage 1 to stage 2 and back again; as one band plays, another sets up – that was the theory of it.
Moretallica. No prizes for guessing whose music they were tributing. They were very good.
The crowd liked what they were hearing and stayed put. By now things had brightened up.
In the acoustic tent, Nuala Bennett-Wilford was on stage
Resin’s sumptuous sounds filled the air. Big guitar lines soared over the field together with the vocals of James Botha.
With their album on sale, Resin stands out both musically and as one of the more successful bands in our local area.
Resin’s set was one of the highlights of the festival. Resin’s music is popular with rock fans and a crowd had gathered to hear them. With three singers in the band, they deliver extraordinarily good songs.
Great music continued as Hells Addiction took to the main stage. In this line-up of some of the very best bands our local area can provide, those who were there were getting a real musical treat. Band after band came on stage tonight to show just what quality music Leicestershire can provide.
Hells’ Addiction smashed it. They kept it going. The lead singer Ben Sargent has a distinctive voice; they are legends of classic rock. The music just kept coming. Blistering guitar solos. Thumpingly good songs.
Just when you thought ‘I can’t get any better …’, Enraged appeared, following the sound of sirens warning of their impending arrival.
As much as I love and admire the band’s that have just been on, I have to admit I am a massive fan of Enraged. It was good that all these bands had agreed to perform at this festival and to support live music in Hinckley.
I loved Enraged the first time I saw them, which was at The Shed some years back. They impressed me, especially their awesome lead singer Richard Tweed. Added to that I am also a long-standing fan of Rage Against The Machine.
What makes Enraged stand out is the stunning performance they put on. Tweed’s voice is so distinctive. Enraged brought much needed heat into the darkening field. They got the crowd moving with an impressive performance that captured the feel and spirit of what festival was all about.
The one song we had all been waiting for finally arrived in our ears. Killing in the name of , the iconic song of RATM and the world that engendered it has been murdered by so many young bands that thought it would be great to cover it. Enraged did it and it was just like being in front of the real RATM, it really was that good. The crowd went mad for it. They became animated in a way we had not seen before this evening. Fists were shaken in the air at the end of outstretched arms. Fingers pointed at the sky. It brought this marvelous set to an inspirational finale.
Enraged might have headlined the whole festival. They could certainly have headlined the day’s main stage offerings.
It is was not over yet. The stage managers had saved the best for last. It was time for Axis Mundi.
The night had pretty much drawn in and the modest production lighting began to glare into the increasingly chilly evening. The smoke machines sent drifts of white fog out into the breezy atmosphere.
The crowd had grown to its maximum capacity. The feeling of excitement was tangible. There was a buzz, it seemed like there was a humming in the air, as though a giant machine was about to burst into action.
The members of Axis Mundi arrived on the stage and soon the crowd were lapping up the music and the moves of lead singer Shaun Garner who climbed up on everything he could find on the stage, in his coat of many colours.
It was pure theatre; you could have made a musical out of it. It was like Labrynth and Beardyman rolled into one. It was like the magic I had seen at Download or Strawberry Fields. It was the same experience on a smaller scale.
On the main stage, the air was vibrating with the resonances of Axis Mundi’s powerful electro sounds, discharging mega watts of energy into the field. The band delivered a song from their new album Sci Curious.
The Brandy Thieves had been putting on their songs on stage 2 and in the acoustic tent, Steve Faulkner was giving his audience one hell of a set of good songs.
All three stages are in action. Saturday night at the HMF was the highlight of the weekend. It was when the celebration really took off and the event reached its crescendo; it became the gala of local music, the moment in the life of live music, it was the fiesta to honour Apollo, the feast of rock.