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Event Reviews

The major rock and metal festivals and events …reviewed

Maiden uniteD – Koninklijk theatre Carre, Amsterdam – 27th January 2018

As someone who really doesn’t like tribute bands, going to see Maiden uniteD may seem like an odd choice of gig, but while they only play Iron Maiden covers, unlike most tribute bands, they don’t just try and replicate the originals. Instead, Maiden united rearrange the songs and play them …

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Laurence Jones – Borderline, London – 23rd January 2018

Ahead of the release of his new album, The Truth, Laurence Jones played the Borderline in London. It’s not too many months since he last played here, so to see the venue busy on a Monday night was a great result and a good sign of his popularity. The night …

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Lacuna coil – Forum, London – 19th January 2018

Tonight’s gig was Lacuna Coil’s 20th aniversary show. 119 is a special number for the band, so the date of 01-19-2018 (using the US date format) tied in nicely. Originally due to be at Shepherds Bush Empire, the show sold out so quickly they upgraded to the Forum and that’s …

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Sari Schorr and The Engine Room at The Citadel Arts Centre, St Helens

‘The First Lady of the Blues’ may be a somewhat overused tagline but in the case of Sari Schorr, and based on this performance at the superb St Helens Citadel Arts Centre, it is extremely difficult to think of a more fitting description. A powerhouse performance saw Schorr bravely air …

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Extreme & Dan Reed Network – Academy, Birmingham – 17th December 2017

Tonight kicked off with the awesome Dan Reed Network. With Extreme having the hit, “Get the funk out”, having Dan Reed Network support them is an inspired choice as there’s plenty of funk in their music. Dan Reed and his band clearly love performing and seem to be having just …

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Towers of London – Night People, Manchester: 9th December 2017

Eight years since they last played Manchester, London based punk rock band Towers of London are back. There was never any official break-up, more of a hiatus, with a single Shake It released in 2015 and a handful of gigs. They have a new (third) album set for release next …

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Tygers Of Pan Tang – Eleven, Stoke On Trent

Midway through their feline good current UK tour, NWOBHM legends Tygers Of Pan Tang stopped on by to sharpen their claws at Eleven. Run by Paul Hume, Demon guitarist and lead vocalist for Lawless, the year old venue is going from strength to strength and was near full to capacity …

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Stone Sour – Arena, Birmingham – 29th November 2017

Judging by ticket sales tonight Stone Sour have reached that difficult point in a touring band’s career. They’re way too big for a tour of Academy venues, but arent big enough to sell out arenas, so with the venue tonight in full arena configuration it feels a bit empty when …

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Kobra and the lotus – Craufurd arms, Milton Keynes – 23rd November 2017

Brutai kicked things off tonight. I last saw them opening the Dogtooth stage at Download festival earlier this year and their set there was good enough that I was looking forward to seeing them again. Their music is nice and heavy but still has plenty of melody. It’s great progressive …

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Deep Purple – Arena, Birmingham – 17th November 2017

Tonight was my first time at the NIA since they changed it to the “Arena Birmingham” name – an obvious wasy of saying “We couldnt find a new sponsor so we left their name blank”. Like many fans I think they should have just reverted to its original name – …

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Airbourne – Rock city, Nottingham – 22nd November 2017

So it’s early doors tonight and I get there just in time for The Wild!. The Wild! aren’t a band I had heard of before, but am glad I made the effort to get there early for them. The Canadian rockers (NOT American as lead singer Dylan Villain was keen …

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Jinjer – Craufurd arms, Milton Keynes – 21st November 2017

The first band tonight was deathcore band Nycosia. They’re very heavy with growly vocals but sadly their songs just aren’t good enough to impress anyone tonight – they relly did fall flat tonight I’m afraid. a fact clear not just from the lack of cheering or applause between songs but …

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Opeth – O2 Academy Bristol, 21st November 2017

‘It’s hard to hold a candle in the cold November Rain’ sang Axl Rose on arguably the best song Guns N’ Roses ever did, but whilst his words from 1991 are more poetically inclined, it’s certainly true in Bristol tonight with winter doing its best to make everything as miserable …

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Samantha Fish – Stables, Milton Keynes – 20th November 2017

Things didn’t get off to a great start tonight as the auditorium doors remained closed even a few minutes before the scheduled start time of 8pm. Finally an announcement was made – tonight’s support act, The Rainbreakers, would not be playing. That was a disappointment, but on the plus side, …

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Jonny Lang – Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London – 4th November 2017

In contrast to Jonny Lang’s last visit to the Empire, this was a more sedate affair with floor seating rather than the standing he had on his last visit, which creates a noticeably different atmosphere. I prefer standing myself for blues rock gigs like this and given that we could …

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Von Hertzen Brothers – Garage, London – 16th November 2017

When I arrived at the venue for tonight’s gig things didn’t look good. With just 20 minutes before Toseland were due on stage the venue was almost empty. Happily in the last ten minutes before they came on, the place quickly started to fill up, and by the end of …

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Helloween – Brixton academy, London – 14th November 2017

Tonight’s Helloween gig was due to be something special. It’s part of their Pumpkins reunited tour which sees the current Helloween lineup joined by former members Kai Hansen and Michael Kiske. For many fans this was their first chance to see Helloween with these two members. There was certainly a …

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Unleash the archers – Craufurd arms, Milton Keynes – 8th November 2017

First up tonight was Hanowar. As the name suggests, they’re a Manowar tribute act. Sadly they were a bit of a disaster. They did explain that they were short of one member that night and said “he’s the one with the talent”, and presumably they weren’t joking. They started the …

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