I would say that quality over quantity is the best way to describe this weeks offerings, either that or venues are being less than forward in advertising their musical wares, but let’s not get me started on that one again.
The first Thursday of the month at The Victoria is the spiritual home of Songs of Praise and ten years down the line and that night is still delivering the goods; original music for the more musically broad-minded amongst you and tonight those goods take the form of 3 very original alt-rock bands. If last decade’s alt-rock was defined by the frankly appalling Limp Bizkit or worse the corporate, grunge by numbers of Puddle of Mudd, then the current grassroots movement is more than redressing the balance and you can catch the best of them tonight.
In just a short time since inception, headliner Rewire the Time Machine has sparked a lot of interest with their shifting desert blues-rock, heavy grunge backdrop and industrial strength riffs. Joining them is Bristol’s Kamino all soaring vocals, cutting edge rock and sweeping synths and a new take on garage-punk meets classic rock riff-o-rama from the wonderfully named Molotov Sexbomb.
On Friday, The Locomotive plays host to local boozehound, rhythm and blues aficionados The Hamsters From Hell and old school pub-rock from some gifted yet scary looking musicians, blues, beards, blustery banter and more besides.
If quality blues-rock is your thing then you are going to want to catch Rolleston regulars The Lewis Creaven Band, a talented trio keeping the spirit of the likes of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix and Bad Company Alive whilst The Bright Eyes bring a party pack of classic covers and pop tunes to The Castle.
The big noise for Friday is Ferocious Dog at The Victoria and what a noise it is. A melting pot of celtic folk, ska and punk that sounds like the spirit of ‘76 all over again…1876! Fans of The Levellers, Oysterband and Flogging Molly should cancel all previous plans and attend. Support comes from local acoustic troubadour Gaz Brookfield, the perfect opening musical salvo for the night.
And if that isn’t a big enough name for you, on Saturday, The Locomotive offers up two bone fide indie music legends. Terry Bickers was the guitar sound of The House of Love and Pete Fij the driving force of Adorable, both bands who were leading lights of the early (pre-Oasis) Creation Records days. These days their music is more reminiscent of a 3am jam between Johnny Cash and the Velvet Underground but no less brilliant. Local support comes with a rare outing from The King in Mirrors and Cirencester soundscapers Familiars.
The Rolleston has something a bit special in the form of all girl trio The Kix. Melding classic rock and bright and modern pop-aware melody together, imagine a young Joan Jet, if she were just starting out today…and came from South Wales.
The Castle plays host to The Roughnecks, a band who weave together some iconic references from blues to rockabilly, old school rock to country, a six-legged retro rock ‘n’ roll party if ever there was one. And also playing the retro ticket, The Victoria is the place to be to relive the glory days of the finest pop group to be named after a Swedish fish products wholesale company with Abba Sensation (although I always thought that a better name for an Abba tribute would be Stockholm Syndrome! No? Just me then.)
A couple of more chilled offerings for Sunday come in the form of 2 afternoon sessions. At The Beehive you will find George Breakfast, self confessed saladmeister, songwriter, street singer, recovering bigmouth and purveyor of smooth folk tones and soulful Americana vibes. At The Rolleston you can catch The Sid Bloomfield Duo information about the gig seems hard to come by but is described by the venues own event page as taking place.
Finally, Wednesday at The Roaring Donkey and something about out of the norm with the welcome return of Grant Sharkey a double bass wielding, musical satirist dealing in insightful social commentary, leftfield musical creations, challenging messages and often just plain silly songs.