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 Degeneration Fest 2014 (UK) Live Review **Day 2 **

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PostDegeneration Fest 2014 (UK) Live Review **Day 2 **

Degeneration Fest
Torksey Lock, Lincoln, UK 29th/30th August 2014


Day Two

Arriving back at the venue on Saturday morning for Day Two, it was good to see everyone smiling and already enjoying themselves. Torksey Lock Scout Hut/Complex is the perfect venue for an event like this. Even though the tented bar that was due to be in place over the weekend failed to turn up it didn't matter. There was a small bar inside that opened instead and it was well stocked, cheap, oh and it was open 24 hours! There is also a cafe which served a variety of good, well priced, hot food for the duration of the Festival. To be able to sit down and chat with band members while filling your face was fantastic. Not only that, there is a huge field where tents can be pitched and which also has a children's play area, dorms and private rooms if you want a decent bed and the whole site is far enough away from any residential area that noise issues aren't a problem! In fact the only house around belongs to the owners of the site and they were on hand all weekend to help out as much as possible. With a plate of sausage and egg demolished, beers bought and a catch up with everyone it was time to get ready for the first of ten bands that would be treading the boards!

That band were Firebomb, a fairly new name to me, which is surprising as they only come from Nottingham. Anyway, that terrible lapse in judgement has now been corrected and I can say, hand on heart, they were excellent. A Rock/Metal trio, Firebomb specialise in big, smack you in the face riffs and catchiness. If AC/DC meeting Ratt in a dark alley sounds good to you then you need to check them out. Lovely bunch of guys as well, and if you ever need a readymade Viking then seek out Vocalist/Bassist Matman Randall. He was born to play the part. Firebomb were a great way to start the day and I'm sure helped to clear a few cobwebs from those that had stayed the night and over indulged in the 24 hour bar!

BrutifulEnt's Firebomb album on Photobucket

Up next were another Nottingham band Flirting With Corpses and, very much like yesterday's second band, they didn't float my boat. For starters Flirting With Corpses are Horror Punk Metal and even though they have a great image (looking like the bastard offspring of Murderdolls or White Zombie) their music didn't fit in that comfortably with the rest of the lineup and to these ears it was all a bit boring, they chatted a bit too much as well. Secondly, whilst the three guys in the band all appear to come across as good musicians/performers, I cannot say the same for their female rhythm section. Bassist 'Joey Livid' didn't appear to play more than one string for the whole gig and drummer 'Diane Sioux' had the kit set up, and played, like a kid picking up the sticks for the first time. Regular readers will know I have nothing against female musicians, there are loads of fabulous ones out there, but these two won't be on that list! Unfortunately Firebomb had left their backdrop on stage. I wouldn't want anyone confusing the two bands!

BrutifulEnt's Flirting With Corpses album on Photobucket

Third Nottingham based band of the day were Section Nineteen and hell, did they get things back on track! Another trio, Section Nineteen are an Electrotrash Punk Rock outfit, but they not only have the image (all three decked out in red and black), they have attitude, style, songs, hooks and...a female bass player that really can play! I'll be honest, when I saw them get onstage I thought they might be too punky for me but I was wrong! They have elements of Blondie, Adam And The Ants, Gary Numan and David Bowie etc but mix it up with a healthy dose of Classic Rock. Vocalist/Guitarist 'Zero' is a great frontman. Mohican rigid, he spits out the vocals with real intent but can be much quieter when needed and in Toxic Terri aka Terri Hamilton they have a superb bass player who dances all over the fret board and does it with a smile. All three of them can sing and, even though it was a cover, the highlight for me was a storming version of 'Mad World' originally by Tears For Fears. Section Nineteen made it their own. Great band!

BrutifulEnt's Section Nineteen album on Photobucket

Spalding in Lincolnshire isn't the place you expect a great young Rock band to come from but Kamikaze Hotshot are obviously out to prove me wrong! Another new name to me they have actually been together five years and all members have been in bands previously. They have the swagger and hooks off to a tee and soundwise are similar to the Wildhearts and Velvet Revolver (they even did a fab cover of 'Slither') with a healthy dose of 70's Punk. Tracks such as 'Suicide Date Party, 'Sold Down The River', 'Sippin' Whiskey, Feelin' Frisky and 'Bondage Baby' do exactly what they say on the tin. If you go and see Kamikaze Hotshot you'll be drinking shots and banging your head before they've finished their first song!

BrutifulEnt's Kamikaze Hotshot album on Photobucket

Next up were a band who evoke the Classic Rock sound of the 70's and 80's. Leicester based Hell's Addiction are a smoking cauldron of riffs, solos and vocals. They take the catchiness of Thunder, authenticity of Tesla, vibe of Free, Rock Boogie of AC/DC and modern touch of The Jokers to create some absolutely corking songs. It's proper, whiskey guzzling Rock 'N' Roll. A four piece group who are great musicians and also contain the hardest hitting drummer I have witnessed since seeing Mike Terrana live with Masterplan. Luke Morley (no, not the Thunder guitarist) hits the skins like an atom bomb and on several occasions the frame just couldn't cope and collapsed under his sheer velocity and power, much to the amusement of the band and audience! Another newish name to me as well as another fabulous performance. Hell's Addiction make foot stomping a necessity!

BrutifulEnt's Hells Addiction album on Photobucket

At this point I had to go off and interview Knock Out Kaine. Now, if anyone reading this knows them then you'll realise an interview isn't your usual 15-20 minute affair. It's full of huge belly laughs and oddness, a bit like watching your favourite black comedy, and generally lasts a good while. I also got a fabulous chance to listen to demo versions of their second album due next year, and what I heard was stunning. With that in mind, I didn't get to watch full sets of the next three bands but I popped in and out when I could and managed to catch bits of everyone! Of course I also had my trusty sidekick Helen photographing everything so she offered her thoughts as well!

Wild Thorn are another band that mix Sleaze/Glam/Hard & Classic Rock and do it very well indeed. Take your pick from 70's, 80's or modern bands from the 00's and Wild Thorn will more than likely rock your boat Ash Robertson has a great voice, you certainly cannot miss his 'massive' hair and guitarists Kane Armstrong & Jay Taylor also stand out as a very good team. Personally I'm sorry I didn't catch more of their set but one thing people did mention to me afterwards was that that they seemed to say "we are Wild Thorn", or similar, a bit too much! They did prove, however, that Newcastle Upon Tyne joins the list of UK cities to have a great Sleaze Rock band!

BrutifulEnt's For Live Reviews album on Photobucket

Sheffield can also join that list now that Spill Sixteen are making a name for themselves. I saw very little of their set on this occasion, but have seen them before and I know what a good live band they are. Spill Sixteen are Buckcherry meets The Treatment meets Shinedown and are full of hooks and melody. You don't necessarily have to take my word for it, but the people coming outside afterwards all seemed to be smiling, which can only be a good thing

BrutifulEnt's Spill Sixteen album on Photobucket

Sheffield is obviously a bit like buses for Dirty Rock. You get one good band and straight way another turns up. Three piece Silverjet have been around a while now and have supported some of the genre greats but they are still only young in comparison. Vocalist/Guitarist Dave Kerr was pulling double duty as he is also the guitarist with Teenage Casket Company (see Day One review). With Silverjet he also proves he can sing and be a frontman in his own right! Joined by Liam Hill and Lee Stoyles they are, from what I saw, an enjoyable and tight band!

BrutifulEnt's Silverjet album on Photobucket

I was now back in the venue after interviewing next band Knock Out Kaine. They may still be a newish name to you but I certainly know them quite well and have watched and seen them develop over the last four years. Their superb debut album 'House Of Sins' was a highlight of 2012 for me and after a sneak listen of new tracks (they even played one called 'Boxes' during the gig) I can confidently say the forthcoming second album is going to absolutely blow people away. Likewise, today's live performance was the best I had seen them play (Two days after this it was announced they had signed to my favourite independent record label Rocksector)! Vocalist Dean Foxx was on superb form, guitarist Jimmy Bohemian really is an unsung talent, Danny Krash a superb drummer and bassist Lee Byrne, well...what can you say about Lee, he's totally unique! Together Knock Out Kaine delivered a Knock Out Punch to the assembled crowd, which seemed to have swelled quite a bit in size for their performance. This band are really on the move and it fills me with joy to say that!

BrutifulEnt's Knock Out Kaine album on Photobucket

After a very long, but still enjoyable day, there was one band left to perform and to end the weekend in party mode we had a tribute act. I concentrate on so much original music that I very rarely get to see a tribute to anyone and I know views are quite split as to their viability, especially if the band they tribute is still a going concern. I'm not likely to see Poison anytime soon though, so Poizon were here to 'save' the day. They were actually great fun although their wigs were hardly at Steel Panther levels. Returning to play a second set (after appearing with Teenage Casket Company) was Vocalist/Guitarist Rob Wylde (Britt Michaels). Joining him on stage were C.D. Deville, Bobby Dull and Micki Rockett as well as a large, bright green, drum kit! We all had a thoroughly enjoyable time singing along to tracks such as 'Every Rose Has It's Thorn' and 'Unskinny Bop' and Poizon brought the curtain down on a fabulous weekend!

BrutifulEnt's Poizon album on Photobucket

Those are my impressions of the first (hopefully annual) Degeneration Fest. Attendance was disappointing throughout the weekend, there is no point glossing over that fact, but with some more partners on board, better advertising and a bit less apathy from punters who will happily pay £100+ to see Metallica sleepwalk through another gig but won't spend a fraction of that to see seventeen bands. then things will change. Organiser Roy Hayes and his team did a stunning job all things considered. He was let down at the last minute by certain people but, to his credit, bounced back and always had a smile on his face. Venue, facilities, staff and dancers were all perfect for this event and many things that were offered you just don't see at other gigs of this size. Sound was good and every band, whether I was that keen on them or not, completely entered the spirit of the weekend. I made lots of great new friends, saw some wonderful performances and cannot wait for it to all happen again in 2015!

Review written exclusively for Brutiful Entertainment by Rick Tilley:

All photographs courtesy of Helen Tilley for Brutiful Entertainment

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