As per tradition, New Hellfire Club compiled together their annual Big Band Payday, a three-day event dedicated to showcasing the best under-the-radar talent, whilst giving them the fairest deal possible.
For the first night, we made our way down to Ivory Blacks for a bill of acts fitting in the punk/rock category.
The trio of McCann were straightforward in style, more or less being power punk in the purest sense.
They played some catchy little ditties such as I Feel Alive Tonight and Old God. There was some technical issues as Andy suffered a broken string, but he would swap for his stunt guitar and they recovered nicely with A Thousand Year Sleep, driven by a cracking bass line as per Stephen.
A chap requested them to do ABBA’s Waterloo, which we only got for a split second, but they did give us a decent offering of Depeche Mode’s Personal Jesus. Not too shabby, if we do say so ourselves.
The Double Standards displayed a youthful enthusiasm as they dished out some fast, fairly exciting tracks whilst showing bundles of energy.
Unfortunately, they were too reckless as their timing was consistently off. Granted, it improved somewhat in the later stages, but on the whole it proved to be a real, glaring hindrance that ruined our enjoyment of them. It was a shame given the potential definitely being there, and we don’t know if it was nerves or just a weak showing, but on this particular night, it went a bit awry.
They are set to play Rekt-Fest in June, which we happen to be attending, so we encourage the guys to tighten up their game a little, and we hope that when the aforementioned show comes around, we can see what they are truly made of, because we cannot deny that they possess a smashing, sizable sound.
We had heard positive things said about Geek Maggot Bingo for a while now, and once they were done, we could see why.
Keeping the chat to a minimum, the guys delivered a range of banging numbers like High Times, A Woman Called Dynamite and Really F***ed Up. Andy’s vocals were rough and vigorous, the riffs were fiesty and the groovy rhythms had a punky edge that had several attendees tapping their toes.
All in all, they exceeded our expectations and we can thoroughly recommend them to everybody.
And last but not least, we had Worse Than Moe, who proceeded to play a handful of material from their album The Ideal Of Youth, and a fair amount of highlights were created.
One Of The Girls and Wake Up had memorable melodies, and the guitars really shined in Could You Be. The sentimental pairing of I Don’t Want To Be A Soldier and Only Two People both featured some gripping writing, and the thrilling instrumental piece Butthead just about knocked our socks off.
Throw in some excellent harmonies and witty quips in-between, and you got an intimate, engrossing performance that capped off the first night of the Big Band Payday quite nicely.