Friday, July 18, 2008

Gig Review - Beasts, Guns On The Roof, G.U. Medicine @ The Parish, Huddersfield

This is a charity gig on behalf of S.O.P.H.I.E., Stamp Out Prejudice Hatred and Intolerance Everywhere. This is a small charity that has been set up following the brutal murder of goth girl Sophie Lancaster.

So on the prejudice and hatred side, what is Huddersfield like tonight ? After having dinner in a very nice Bengali restaurant I have wander around Huddersfield's scruffy, run down and litter strewn town centre. While I'm looking in a shop window a group of lads in the pub next door suddenly hammer on the window which makes me jump, they all laugh, ok, that's pretty funny in a juvenile way. Further down the street through I'm walking past the beer garden of another pub when I hear something bounce on the pavement, looking down I see that small stones are landing around me, a group of chavs in the pub beer garden are picking stones from the flower tubs and throwing them at me. What sort of town is this ? I walk on, rapidly.

The Parish is gratifyingly full of freaks, tattoos and numerous piercings, t-shirts with skulls and monsters, giant boots with studs, bullet belts, mohicans and multi coloured hair, it feels friendly and safe.

First band on the cramped stage are Beasts, if you like Gallows then you'd like Beasts, it's that sort of hurricane speed full on hardcore. It isn't really my kind of thing but they make a good impression on the small crowd. They rattle through half a dozen or so ferocious but rather similar songs only interrupted by a collapsing drum kit and snapped guitar strings.

The equipment failures threaten to turn the night into some sort of comedy show as Guns On The Roof bring their Oi! tinged punk to The Parish. Despite failing drum pedals and blackouts they cheer up the crowd, singer and comedian Liam Brett makes light of the general air of amateurishness by introducing the band as "Yorkshire's own Spinal Tap" to general laughter. GOTR are sharp and likable, their tunes are simple and infectious and very easy to like and they look to be having a hell of a good time when they play, it's big grins all round on stage and a good reception from the audience.

Headliners G.U. Medicine are loud, good Lord they are loud, I'm still deaf this morning. The band have a huge, tight, riff driven style which nods towards Motorhead / Orange Goblin / Black Label Society, they are fast, heavy and very very good.

On the cusp of releasing a third album on Undergroove records, GUM show off a fair few tracks from the new album tonight, alongside some old favourites like 2nd album title track Saints Of Excess. Throughout the set drummer Murray doesn't look well, he's virtually collapsed over the kit after giving his all in every song but he soldiers on. GUM are a very tight outfit, the sound in this tiny venue isn't the best (they sounded much better on the last Wildhearts tour) but they give their all and stir up the crowd nicely.

Good show, good bands, thanks to the organisers at The Parish.

Beasts MySpace

Guns On The Roof MySpace

G.U. Medicine MySpace

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