Some weeks I get to wax lyrical about bands with weird names that most of you have never heard of, from far flung realms and exotic sounding places that your average reality TV star or Republican party nominee couldn’t point to on a map. This week, however, it is much more about the home team as many of the gigs slots feature frequently returning and popular bands. In other words, tried and tested, solid, dependable bookings. And why not?
Vivere Promotions has managed to secure a date at The Victoria tonight for a tasty little tour package with local pop-rockers With Ghosts heading the bill. Infectious and melodic riffs welded on to rock urgency and energetic drive to create music that you won’t be able to help yourself from dancing to. Also lined up are the big, angular riffs of Go Primitive, the soundscaping atmospheres of Vexxes and the downbeat, emotive and melancholic vibes of Dream Catcher.
Rock wanders into more extreme and metallic realms on Friday as The Victoria hosts the final round of the Metal To The Masses battle of the bands, which sees a number of local outfits compete to win a place at this year’s Bloodstock Festival. Having made it to this final stage you can witness the dystopian drama of Ghost of Machines; the technical and intricate metalcore of Ursus; the classic lines of Edenfalls and the cavernous doom of Heriot fight it out.
At The Beehive, Rolly’s Syndicate provide some wonderfully original sounds, an innate soulfulness, funky grooves and slick, dexterous deliveries combine with smooth vocals to create music which dovetails jazz, soul, blues and R’n’B together in a timeless yet contemporary way.
At The Rolleston, one of their most popular bookings, The Worried Men return with a righteous salvo of heavy blues and groove driven rock. If ZZ Top, The Hamsters or Hendrix himself is your cup of tea then this is where you need to be.
The Locomotive sees Swindon’s top covers band Echo take the stage with a set of party favourites, delivering musical classics that cross genre and time to bring you the ultimate live and highly dynamic jukebox of a show, much like Champagne Charlie Band will be doing at The Castle. At The Swiss Chalet you can catch a whole slab of familiar songs from top Swindon covers band LadsLadsLads, the local advocates of bloke-rock (Is there such a thing? There is now.)
Having seen Lewis Clark and The Essentials play in town recently I can honestly say that you really need to catch this band. Although on paper you would have to describe them as an acoustic folk and blues fusion, in reality they are much more than that. They are soulful, dexterous, effortlessly cool, and musically economic, they make every note and lyrical line count and are the perfect band to restore your faith in creativity and originality. You will find them at The Rolleston on Saturday.
If Brit-pop is more you’re thing then get yourself down to The Locomotive for Bristol’s wonderfully named Discount Columbo who carry a torch for that era and fill their songs with optimistic vibes and undeniable grooves.
Syntronix will be reliving the glory days of 80’s synth pop at The Victoria. Remember when a load of post-punk techno visionaries threw the rockist rule book away, bought synths and create eerie, sterile and vaguely menacing dance tunes before emerging out the other side as emotional and often operatic pop. Well, that is pretty much the parameters of the Syntronix set.
At The Swiss Chalet, Swindon’s top covers band W.M.D. play all of the modern classics plus a few older and less obvious selections.
Solo performances come along with Chris O’Leary at The Castle on Sunday and Nick Felix at The Roaring Donkey on Wednesday and rounding the week off, also on Wednesday you will find those globe trotting troubadours of genre hopping cosmic electronica Loonaloop back the Beehive as part of the tour which sees them wind their way towards Glastonbury Festival.