Saturday, October 29, 2005

Dragons Slay Us

Tokyo Dragons/The Answer/The Sound Explosion, Wolverhampton Wulfrun Hall, Tuesday October 25 2005.

Tonight is the latest installment of a rotating bill of three bands under the banner 'The New School Of Rock'. First to bring the noize are Newcastle-Upon-Tyne's The Sound Explosion, four bruin bairns still in their teens, and with the fringes all over their faces to prove it. It's a suitably loud and frenetic set of scuzzy garage rock (are MC5 back in fashion again SO SOON?!) in sharp contrast to the comically static bass player with the Hare Bear haircut who seems oblivious to the storm the rest of his colleagues are trying to kick up. They finish off with their next single 'Apollo' (set to launch November 25) and they've got enough attitude and smarts about them it might be fun to watch them take off.

The Answer are from Downpatrick and have just been awarded the honour of Best New British Band by Classic Rock magazine. There's a little bit of a clue therein to the appeal of the group, as they are so heavily influenced by the likes of Led Zeppelin it's easy to see why they're the favourite new band for music fans who define themselves by their love of old bands. They've got some strong and catchy songs, but Dead Kenny is expecting (or at least, hoping) for something extra than mere competent pastiche given their level of press plaudits. So he waits. And he waits. Then he gives up and sods off to the bar to get the round in. New School Of Rock, then: same as The Old School, though to be fair, Dead Kenny's personal chauffeur and grizzled rock veteran Gisbourne is broadly in approval. His casual employer, hoewever, can only conclude that if this lot are The Answer, someone somewhere is asking the wrong questions.

Tokyo Dragons are tonight's headliners, a band PV regulars may remember from a live review last April. Since that show the London four-piece have seen their debut album 'Give Me The Fear' released with such lack of PR fanfare from Island Records that it's probably more accurate to say that it dribbled out into record stores with the apologetic pitifulness of an old man's nocturnal emission. That's most unfortunate, as on the evidence of their live shows they deserve a much better commercial fate, all the more so since the chastening effect of their limpid record sales has seen them cut out the gurning and posing in favour of what they do best: unpretentious, fire-breathing and ever-so-slightly lairy pedal-to-the-metal rock'n'roll, fast and hard enough to offset any reservations on their lack of innovation. Tokyo Dragons should worry about their long-term chart prospects, but for now the young women in their denim miniskirts understand, and for that we should all be truly grateful.


Anonymous Grizzled rock veteran said...

Ah Dead Kenny, Grizzled rock veteran and personal chauffer here. I think the lack of PR fanfare for the excellent "Give Me The Fear" from Island can be put down to the fact our favourite London rockers split form Island in the Spring and the album was released on Escapi records. This of course is no reason for not going out and buying it.

Oh and some advanced warning esteemed employer of choice, I'm taking some temporary leave from chauffer duties, so travel to the Motorhead gig next Thursday will be by rail. A chance to enjoy a drink while travelling to the gig, a pleasure of course soon to be taken from us ... I trust you weren't going to keep the fact that you are going to a gig on the 30th anniversary tour of Britain's loudest secret from your readers. lets face it, you can't keep Motorhead quiet .....

9:13 PM  
Blogger Dead Kenny said...

Grizzbourne, your timely and diligent intervention may have saved me from legal action from the aforementioned Island Records therefore a packet of quavers will be added to your usual retainer this week.

Dead Kenny trusts the train to see old Lemmy will be the Warthog Express?

9:34 PM  

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