DATE: Friday 25th May 2012
VENUE: The Bull & Gate, Kentish Town Road, Kentish Town, London
OUR VERDICT: Join the Carnival
Following the Liverpool week, International Pop Overthrow moves to London. Just one stage this time and 21 bands, again ranging from solo acts with an acoustic guitar to full on rock bands covering different music styles form folk, pop, rock and everything in between!!!!
Whilst we do try to see all of the bands, it is not always possible. Some of the bands / artists just aren’t our cup of tea, some are good and some are just pure nuggets and our blog is a personal account of what we thought of each day, highlights and lowlights included.
Our London IPO kicked off with band four, The Cherry Bluestorms who had travelled all the way from Los Angeles to play at both Liverpool and London (and a gig in Camden Town’s Dublin Castle). The Cherry Bluestorms are a great psychedelic rock band, who look the part and sound fantastic. Deborah Gee, as the front woman glided around the stage, playing tambourine and finger cymbals whilst delivering some great vocals that blended with the psychedelic guitar. Kicking off with a Beatles number, we then heard some songs from the album we have and were also treated to some new songs which sounded superb.
Glen on guitar is a major vintage gear aficionado. You get the feeling the band would step up a gear if he was let loose with his own equipment.
|The Cherry Bluestorms|
Ben Jones and The Rifle Volunteers, are headed by Ben Jones (from the Lovedays, a band we saw a couple of years ago in Liverpool IPO) who is a man comfortable with being at the head of a band. Playing a lovely looking white archtop, which gave a full powerpop sound, we heard a great set of songs sung by Ben, complimented very nicely by the girl on backing vocals. They stormed through their set, with some really punchy numbers. For the final song, the backing vocalist took the lead and they ended with rapturous applause from everyone in the club. And we got a couple of Ben Jones' CD' because we were so impressed!
|Ben Jones & The Rifle Volunteers|
If The Last Carnival don’t hit the big time, the world will be robbed of a great band. This five piece is headed by a really charismatic lead singer/guitarist who is not only a great singer, but has great rapport with the other guitarist. Between them, you know they know how to work a crowd, but they were up against it tonight with a small audience in the club. No-one felt confident enough to step from the shadows and sing along…….until The Beeb flexed his muscles and got up on the stage to do the “Oh Oh Oh Oh” backing, that is. The song sounded great and when the Beeb improvised at the end with substituting the “Oh Oh Oh Oh’s” with “Andy Warhol” the look on the guitarist’s face was a picture….. somehow they might steal that idea! We learned that the band are at the moment recording with the McFly/Pixie Lott/Hoosiers producer, so he will know what a hit is made of. Fingers crossed we see much more from The Last Carnival.
|The Beeb adds a bit of backing for The Last Carnival|
Last on tonight’s bill were firm favourites of ours, The Soundcasters. Included in their set were some of the songs we have grown to love, such as “Pauline” and their pop/ska sound really gets you tapping your feet. A highlight from their set was “Just A Gigolo”, which was new for them, but you would think they have played it for years, it sounded perfect. The audience loved it. There was a fair sized crowd in the Bull & Gate, and demanded more, so they were able to play an encore and we were treated to “French Habit”. A great end to the night.
|The Beeb meets The Cherry Bluestorms|