Social Experiment hit the stage at the early time of seven-fifteen due to Cardiff seemingly giving up its city to the busiest night in a long time as the Stadium Across the road having seventy thousand petrol heads in for a show but the clued in people of South Wales braved the gridlock for the main event happening on one side of Womanby Street. Puddle is quite the striking frontman with his wonderfully pert mowhawk as he belted out the words to their songs stalking the front of the stage like a caged beast the four-piece sound tight and deliver their hardcore punk with gusto.  Tackling social issues and hammering out tracks drawn from their most excellent album ‘Rumours Of Our Demise Are Not Greatly Exaggerated’. The only local boys on tonight’s bill kick things off with a really impressive set they’re hard to ignore and certainly prove to be a tasty chaser for tonights session.

 

Rich Ragany and The Digressions have battled horrendous motorway traffic and vuvuzela brandishing speedway maniacs to make their Welsh debut tonight. So, after all that just as they launch into the sublime late summer sounds of ‘Little Let Down’ and guitarist Gaff’s amp decides to go up in flames, I must admit my heart kind of sinks a little bit for them.

Fear not though (power)pop pickers as after a quick on-stage tactical reshuffle this little hiccup is quickly put to one side and the remaining Digressers set about delivering a finely woven set of songs largely drawn from the ‘Like We’ll Never Make It’ album, Rich’s debut solo release.

Highlights? Well, there’s the rambunctious ‘Scotty Thompson’ which crops up mid-set, which is a song that could very easily out Cockney tonight’s headliners in its composition. Then there’s the bristling energy of ‘Your Distance’ where Rich along with rhythm guitarist Kit Swing combine their voices to lift even the hardest of hearts in attendance tonight.

Having already supported the likes of alt-rock legends The Lemonheads and The Rolling Stones buddies The Dirty Strangers it’s easy to see why Rich Ragany and The Digressions have such a broad church appeal and I must admit I was enjoying myself so much along with most of the rest of the audience that I didn’t really scribble down anything else. Then again isn’t this what Saturday nights are supposed to be all about?

With the good decision to take this to the main room it was time for headliners The Bar Stool Preachers to stand tall and show the good people of this city exactly what all the fuss is about.  Without fanfare they didn’t so much hit the stage but gave it a right seeing to with a size ten. The energy and enjoyment oozing from the band is a joy to see and they waste no time at all winning the crowd over who have come to dance and have a seriously good time.

Without the blink of an eye this (now) five piece really work the stage and audience alike and their love of the music wins over even the hardest cynic and with ‘One Fool Down’ coming fairly early on in the set is a real blast.  There are plenty of people singing every word as the songs from their first two studio albums get peeled off the bands hard work ethic is really paying off as they might be a guitar lite they are still tighter than a pair of soaking wet rizlas the three out front lock-in and move like its been choreographed or rather a well-oiled machine who’ve toured their backsides off in Europe and America over the last few years.

There was time for a few new songs as well which even on first or second time of hearing already sound like the band has taken another step up the ladder thats not to say songs of the first two are weak because they are absolutely not but this is shaping up to be next level stuff. older sounds are welcomed like old mates songs like ‘Ballad Of The M1’ and ‘Start New’ are fresh and ‘DLTDHYOTWO’ sounded magnificent and Tom was (Bar Stool) preaching to converted as he expressed his feelings towards the current unwanted encombant of Number 10.  It’s great to hear a band so driven and right up for it and bloody well enjoying every second of their journey and its a journey I’m more than happy to jump on board with.  One of the best bands the UK has to offer right now and if you get the chance to see them play a club show anytime soon then take it because when the next album comes out you’ll be having to see them headline venues the size of the University across town and who knows from there.

One of the most enjoyable night’s entertainment for a long long time with three quite different bands but all with a common bond – they love music and play with their hearts on their sleeves and leave nothing behind (well apart from a Bass guitar), They have something to say and say it well – with passion, conviction and enthusiasm that’s infectious and great to see.

This was The Bar Stool Preachers third time in South Wales and their first headline show and they totally owned it and looked so comfortable like they’d been headlining for years and years.  Come the revolution if there’s to be a soundtrack then these boys will provide it.

Author: Dom Daley & Johnny Hayward (who reviewed Rich Ragany)

“Slow down Cunthead!”

I get to hear this profanity being hollered by a rather worse for wear Blackpool local just after 10am on a glorious Saturday morning and actually take it that its aimed at me as I admit I feel like death warmed up after our Fan-dabi-Friday spent in the unprecedented heat of the Winter Gardens with The Stranglers in The Empress last night possibly setting the record for the hottest gig I’d ever been in. It’s not though, the comment, it’s actually aimed at a local taxi driver who dared to pass the unhappy chappy on a pedestrianised area, but still I find it a life lesson worth taking on board as with the prospect of another full day spent in the punk rock pleasuredome ahead the last thing I really want to do is crash and burn with so many great bands still to check out.

To counter this I feel a bit of retail therapy is in order to restore some balance as I plough through the local second hand record shops looking for that ever illusive vinyl copy of Alistair Terry’s ‘Yonge At Heart’, which of course I never manage to find, but instead I come away with 10 cock rock albums that would make any grown man blush if they were ever caught in the possession of them.  Let’s hope then that I don’t happen to bump into The Bar Stool Preachers on the way back to the hotel and become the brunt of some brutal ribbing for actually buying an album by a band called Dirty Blonde… oops!

With my sanity partially restored I head back into The Empress for my first band of the day at the still ungodly hour of 12:35 to catch the return of South Californian hardcore outfit Spider to Rebellion. Featuring former and current members of bands such as Channel 3, Walk Proud, Total Massacre and Bullet Treatment Spider provide a thunderous wake up call for those brave enough to leave their pits early doors.  There’s a cover of Black Flag’s ‘Depression’ slotted in somewhere within their energetic blur and it’s a song which also features on the band’s new ‘Energy Gone Wrong’ EP. ‘Barcode Baby’ and ‘Metal Detector’ help them deliver some killer blows too. You know I’d pay good money to see a double denim rocker actually turn up at a show played by this lot thinking it was the 80s UK boogie band who went by the same name and get the shock of their baldy longhaired lives, I really would.

Taking a trip up to the Rebellion Punk Art show is always on my list of “must-dos” if not just to see my old mate Colin Creamcrop Scott who as always is entertaining the masses with his tales of 80s Polish hardcore bands as well as wowing them with his use of reclaimed items to deliver his stunning visuals. There’s always something that catches my eye here not least this year the ever-growing mixture of media being used but I must admit what I do miss having witnessed some right corkers over the years are the old John Robb curated literary interviews that used to take place throughout the weekend in this very venue. Still this year there’s Micky Geggus and Jordan popping up for some Q&As and signing sessions so all is not yet lost.

Heading back to the Arena just in time to catch kung fu kicking Swedish garage punks Zero Zero this bunch of mentalists leaves a lasting impression me both on and off stage with their intoxicated antics. There’s no nudity to write about this time around but bassist Felix later revealing to me and Dom that The Sick Livers are one of his all-time favourite bands was indeed a weekend defining moment.

Quickly shuffling over to the Opera House ready to catch The DeRellas playing what has become their Rebellion second home (and duly rechristened The DeRellaDome by yours truly) the immediate thing that hits me – other than the rather welcoming air conditioning – is just how packed it is down the front ready for Joe, Timmy, Luca and Billy to make their appearance, and this alone really restores my faith in the UK music scene right now as it’s great to see the guy’s continuous hard work making such a noticeable impact.  Of course, delivering a set packed full of glam pop goodies like ‘Don’t Go’, ‘Rip It Up’ (where Luca channels his inner Spaceman) and the simply fantastic ‘High Rise Supersize’ is only going to help the fan devotion grow even further and a year on with Billy Chaos holding down the backbeat The DeRellas really are sounding like the band I think they’ve always dreamed of being. I once saw The Only Ones play the Opera House and they weren’t anywhere as good as The DeRellas were today. You better believe it brothers and sisters.

It’s at this point in our Rebellion Saturday that me and Dom normally find a local boozer and enjoy the first weekend of the football season unfold on a TV screen but this year Dom’s interviewing Mr Spunk Volcano for a soon to be published RPM exclusive interview so instead I tag along to listen to possibly one of the most in-depth discussions the masked man has ever given and trust me when I say this one is certainly going to make for some interesting reading.

Returning to the Winter Gardens with every intention of watching my old mate, ex- Glitterati and current Rich Ragany & The Digressions guitar dude Gaff, playing with Desperate Measures I arrive at the Arena for their allotted slot only to find the place in band changeover mode so I assume they are running a little late and get myself a drink. Then when Blitzkrieg finally do make it onto the Arena stage the penny drops and I realise I should have been in the Pavilion all along and even with a quick sprint to the correct venue I literally turn up just as the final chord is echoing out around the horseshoe. Bollocks! Sorry lads, that’s gotta be a first for me, but at least I’m man enough to admit it and hopefully raise a smile or two in the process.

Angry with myself at this band faux pas I make sure I’m in The Opera House well in advance of Alvin Gibbs and The Disobedient Servants taking to the stage and yes I do triple check my planner this time, because having see this band deliver one of my gigs of the year so far I was not about to miss out. Especially when today the core trio of Alvin, Leigh and Jamie that I saw just a few months back are being joined by the master of guitar crunch Steve Crittall and for just a couple of songs birthday boy Gizz Butt who looks positively delighted to get to shred his way through the solos on the raw power of ‘Clumsy Fingers’ and the Iggy tribute ‘Down On The Streets’ . The setlist is pretty much the same as the one I’d seen previously but with the added bite of Crittall on guitar, I can’t help but wish I’d seen this line up play these songs in a small club. Still here’s hoping for the future as with the band sounding this great the ‘Your Disobedient Servant’ album surely can’t be the end of the solo adventure for Alvin.

Moving back to the Empress Ballroom just as Italian boot boys Giuda are about to take the stage with an uproarious version of ‘Overdrive’ from their excellent if somewhat sonically different ‘E.V.A’ LP it’s the intensity of the slightly rejigged line up that immediately hits me. I admit I was half expecting them to have turned into Giuran Giuran (thanks to Jim Rowland at Uber Rock for that one) given the use of synths on the new record, but no, as they rattle through the likes of ‘Back Home’, ‘Number 10’ and ‘Get It Over’ they actually sound tougher than ever before, which with no between-song banter and this time around no cover versions makes for the almost complete version of Giuda yet. Leaving the stage with ‘Cosmic Love’ from ‘E.V.A’ blasting out of the PA was certainly a bit odd though.

At this point, I admit I could have just stayed in the Empress for the veritable smorgasbord of tasty Oi! bands that were about to follow but with the lure of Duncan Reid playing the Opera House and that venue’s rather splendid sound and air-con I decided to play it cool ahead of Cock Sparrer and catch the 1-2 of The Big Heads and then later Walter Lure before sweating out half my body weight back in the Empress.

Opting to catch Duncan Reid And The Big Heads proves very quickly to be an inspired choice of band as the quartet rattle through some of their very best songs including a poptastic ‘Baby Doll’, a huge sounding ‘Bombs Away’, along with the uplifting ‘Just Because You’re Paranoid’. It’s also guitarist/keyboardist Sophie K Powers’ birthday and that seems to add an extra bounce to the whole band tonight and as guitarist Nick Hughes takes to the microphone for a run through ‘Brickfield Nights’ and the whole band join in on ‘First Time’ (a song Duncan dedicates to the songwriting genius of Honest John Plain) the whole party atmosphere seems to engulf the front rows right through to the last chord.

Picking up a quick bag of chips to keep me going I’m soon back in the Opera House in time to catch the only remaining Heartbreaker Walter Lure and his all-star LAMF band that also features Mick Rossi on guitar, Mark Laff on drums and Nigel Mead on bass. Now the cynics out there might be thinking this has car crash written all over it, but I’d actually say after watching these guys live it felt a hell of a lot more like a real band than the last time Lure played Rebellion back in 2013 with a few (admittedly excellent) hired guns. In particular, Laff and Mead are a watertight rhythm section and Rossi has always been something of a Johnny Thunders disciple can barely hide his excitement tearing off the riffs to the likes of ‘Pirate Love’, ‘Chinese Rocks’ and ‘Born To Lose’. Lure again adds in a few Waldos numbers along the way plus this time there’s also a couple of Slaughter & The Dogs tunes sung by Rossi. What we have here ladies and gents is a highly entertaining set that once again treats the Heartbreakers legacy with the respect it deserves.

Saturday night at Rebellion 2019 is all about the return of the mighty Cock Sparrer to the Empress Ballroom, and trying to get a good vantage point from which to watch their set is proving an almost impossible task even a good 15 minutes out from the scheduled start time. Having previously watched them from the pit, from half way back by the sound desk and from when the stage was side on almost from the side, tonight I choose a balcony view from behind side stage which means I not only get to watch the band without obstruction but I also get to watch the huge crowd too. As the lights dim and the ‘Overture’ intro tape booms out the PA I can feel the beads of sweat already running down my head, heaven only knows how hot it must be onstage under those lights or down the front, as once again the opening trio of ‘Riot Squad’, ‘Watch Your Back’ and ‘Working’ send the (shock) troops into a veritable frenzy. I’ve seen Sparrer live a good few times now and tonight really is one of the very best performances I’ve seen to date (even right up there with that show stealing Hellfest slot a good few years back now) and its perhaps made all the more significant and special when mid set Colin asks Andy (the husband of Kathy Rocker) to join them onstage for a truly heart wrenching rendition of ‘Gonna Be Alright’.  Elsewhere from the 2017 album ‘Forever’ we get the awesome ‘One By One’ along with the tongue twisting ‘Nothing Like You’ whilst the rest of the set is packed full of classics like ‘AU’, ‘Runnin’ Riot’ and ‘Where Are They Now?’ and never mind how many times I hear these songs live I never grow tired of them. That Sparrer play for 80 minutes and it feels like 10 minutes also shows what an immersive experience seeing them live really is, and yes, I’ll be doing it all over again when they hit the UK club circuit for one last time in 2020 along with support from Spunk Volcano & The Eruptions.

Joining back up with Dom at the Opera House for the end of The Godfathers set (and in fact as it turns out the end of that band) we ponder for a minute about going to watch another band before the night is out, but me, I need to go back to the hotel to wring out my T-Shirt as that really was the kind of day Saturday was at Rebellion 2019. (JH)

Whilst Johnny went off to lace his Doc Martins up and iron his Fred Perry I stayed in the Opera House, took five and waited for The Godfathers to take to the stage. Starting the set with ‘Birth, School, Work, Death’ seemed like a great idea as the band sounded thunderous and little did we know what was brewing. ‘This Is War’ had Steve Crittalls guitar slashing like a samurai sword through the super locked in and tight rhythm section. It was a ‘Big Bad Beautiful Noise’ and it was, a Beautiful noise that is.  It was commented that the band was ripping it up and I think it’s fair to say that this was shaping up to be one of the performances of the weekend. ‘If I Only Had Time’ had never sounded so good and following that up with the flip flop of ‘Til My Heart Stops Beating’ throughout the fifteen or so songs the band played they were on fire and ending the set with ‘Defribulator’ seemed apt under the circumstances.

The band returned briefly for a romp through the Ramones ‘Blitzkrieg Bop’ and then they were gone.  Little did we know that some days later Peter was making the public removal of the whole band on Facebook! 

Sure it’s his baby and his prerogative to shake the lineup and hire and fire but Facebook?  From a fan of the music and the legacy of The Band I’m gutted – shit happens, I get that but this line up was channeling some incredible MC5, Stooges,  Detroit sounds which makes it all the more sad to see it unfold so publicly and after such an electrifying performance.

Alex, Steve, Tim, and Darren’s contribution should be recognised because they seriously rocked, it’s a real shame that the legacy of The Godfathers might very well be damaged  (I hope not) because I was buzzing after the set and that was largely down to the band who just played, Peter included. Who said Rock and Roll was boring? (DD)

Now over to Mr. Sutton to fill in the blanks of what else went on elsewhere in The winter gardens…

Saturday is something of a tactical battle as alcohol intake has to be tempered by an impending midnight gig to be played. As a result, many intended viewings fall by the wayside. ut there’s no way I could miss the Cockney Rejects and there’s also no way you can miss the full-blown Wonk Unit set after last night’s masterclass and it’s good to see a totally packed Club Casbah agree wholeheartedly. Two blinding sets in 24 hours?  Wonk Unit shit them!!!  The early day logistics meant that one of the bands I missed was Informal Society but that aforementioned midnight set we had to play at a fringe gig also happened to have Informal Society playing the 2am slot, so actually catching them was a real bonus, as the LA troupe really ripped out a high energy set for their second stint of the waking day.

Authors (JH) Johnny Hayward additional words from (DD) Dom Daley and Mr. Darrel Sutton.

Pictures of Alvin Gibbs, Gizz Butt, Cock Sparrer, Cockney Rejects courtesy of Dod Morrison Photography

All others from the shakey Dark Fruit sponsored phones of Hayward & Daley

Every month we will try to promote the bands who grace the pages of RPM Online and ask that if you do follow us on Spotify then please where possible try and support the bands by picking up their physical music as well as just streaming.  We appreciate its a great way to discover new music but bands make better records and earn more from you buying their physical products.

Support us and the bands by sharing this page on social media and following the playlist on Spotify

This month we’ve either reviewed – seen or reported on new music heading our way from some of our favourite artists and this month is no exception beginning with Manchester The Empty Page who has a new track out that we feature this month.

Then Poison Boys have just released their blistering debut album we reviewed here but the album isn’t on Spotify yet so we delved into their back catalogue for this months playlist. But buy the album its a belter (Here).

We also welcome back The Hives with their new single.

The living end were awesome supporting the mighty Stray Cats recently so we included one off their last studio album.

One of my favourite albums this year has been the much-anticipated solo record from Billy Liar.  One of my favourite tracks off the album is added to our playlist – simple – beautiful – ‘Independent People’ is awesome and one of the best tunes this month.

Supporting Billy at his album launch is Rich Ragany & The Digressions so why not include the fantastic ‘Your Distance’ from the superb ‘…Like We’ll Never Make It…’

There are also some superb tunes on our playlist from the likes of Duncan Reid, Joey Cape, Razorbats and more.  go check us out and spread the word.

 

Spotify Playlist

Some awesome lyrics there Larry May.  Seeing as they’ve just released the lost second album it’s about time The Candy Snatchers made it onto RPM ‘Rainy Days And Mondays’ so here goes ‘Why I Drink’  Their new album was reviewed on RPM Here and if you have any taste you’d check em out so, maybe this video will inspire you on this Bank Holiday.

Next up is the stunning track ‘Your Distance’  which is the first video off …’Like We’ll Never Make It’… from Rich Ragany & The Digressions which is Available Here You can also Catch the band live at Camden Rocks Festival this coming weekend. Great live and great on record check it out!

Finally its The Only One’s frontman Peter Perrett with another video taken off his brilliant new album ‘Humanworld’ out June 7th on Domino Records available for pre-order Here the RPM Online review will be available before the record is out for you to help decide which format you’re going to pick it up on.

The Spangles sneak out a brand new video for the track ‘Alone’ taken off their superb debut album ‘#Sweet FA’.  They’re even giving away the single via Bandcamp plus an exclusive unreleased B side. As much as we want you to hang around on RPM Onlne what are you still here for?  Get on it! you can also catch the band supporting Rich Ragany & The Digressions this coming Saturday as they both play The Parish in Huddersfield tickets available Here

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Album launch show for Rich Ragany & The Digressions you say?Camden Town you say? The Spangles, The Speedways and More Kicks on the same bill for less than a tenner?  Fuck me sideways I’ll have some of that.

It might be dryruary or whatever you want to call it, people might be feeling the post-Christmas pinch and the weather might be a bit baltic outside but worry not this is the Black Heart and as we all know it’s like a Rock ‘n’ Roll sauna upstairs and tonight it didn’t disappoint again.

First up tonight, The Spangles.  kicking off tonight’s proceedings with their first soiree into London Town and I think it’s fair to say that I can speak on behalf of those here present they certainly didn’t leave anything behind as they knocked out tune after tune from their rather spiffin’ debut album ‘Sweet FA’.  With some quality cheeky banter and beaming smiles, the top tunes kept coming. It was the perfect way to get this show underway. In thirty sweaty minutes, they showed that Rock ‘n’ Roll is in good hands and songs like ‘The Only One’, ‘Dirty Pictures’ and ‘Hold My Hand’ ensured that we’re in safe hands and on this evidence this might be the first visit to the Capital but it won’t be the last time these three talented guys hit London and I’m sure on the evidence of their performance and the quality of the music The Spangles are a tasty proposition and they will undoubtedly go from strength to strength.

Next up were those power poppin’ rock ‘n’ rollers The Speedways. Off the back of their debut album, they’ve been getting some decent column inches for a stunning piece of crafted power pop that is ‘Just Another Regular Summer’. This was my first time seeing the band live and with a rougher edge to the songs and some played faster it seemed to add to what are already really good songs. I think it worked really well having Mauro Venegas on lead guitar to buffer off Matt and his style of playing and it added to the sound of the songs.  The band looked and sounded superb again much like The Spangles you would be forgiven for thinking they’d been a band for years.  ‘Seen Better Days’ reminded me of Stiv around the ‘Disconnected’ era and live without the keyboards and that rougher edge they really hit the spot. If you wanted to hear the definition of powerful pop songs then this was it. ‘In Common with You’ was better than the recorded version sped up and sounded really good.  Playing the album pretty much in sequence up until they threw in a faultless rendition of ‘They Don’t Know’ yeah that’s right the Kirsty MacColl number Tonight The Speedways took ownership and totally nailed it. The second band down and another band with a rosy future and capable of great things. I only hope they make more music together as they have a rosy future on the strength of a performance like that. Excellent!

We reach the halfway point of tonight’s proceedings and up next is the three-piece pop melodies of More Kicks. They might not have made it to an album launch of their own yet but their debut three-track single was excellent and if that’s the shape of things to come then let’s get it on.  There are no airs and graces on display tonight,  no egos jostling for the top spot just good time, honest Rock ‘n’ Roll played by people who clearly love what they’re doing and who walk the walk as well as talk the talk.  More Kicks have got it all to prove and right from the off seem intent on letting the punters see what they have in their locker and again like the previous two bands they didn’t disappoint.

After seeing their last performance that was with The Briefs up at the Lexington I thought they took this one up a notch and they seemed to wring out a little more energy which was a fantastic achievement for a band brimming with the stuff.  Again, More Kicks blast out hook after hook and melody after catchy lyric with the likes of songs as strong as opener ‘Young Enough’  it seemed like no biggie to just plug in and play confident that the tunes will stand up on their own and like Ali walking to the centre of the ring and doing the Ali shuffle followed by a knock out blow  More Kicks must know these songs are so strong? They’ve not just got the one outstanding tune but a whole bloody set of them. Songs like ‘What A Mess’ are just wonderful live so full of energy and life if you could bottle this you’d be loaded.

Sulli is a great frontman, so enthusiastic and full of good energy with songs like ‘Shes A Reaction’ they can slow things down (a little) so it’s not all crash bang wallop! but beauty in such strong melodies, as well as a little dash of chaos, makes for the perfect power pop.  Exploding Hearts, Stiv doing his power pop or The Boys these are all lined into the DNA of More Kicks as much as the charm and style of The Fab Four or the Kinks. oh and they’ve got the tunes as well trust me. By the time they play ‘Blame It On The Satellite’ – they’ve got it all going on and tonight they might just have stolen the show so far. A magnificent performance and if you can catch them I urge you to do so because you’re in for a right treat. Oh, and after the next single release can we have that album please guys?

Right, How the fuck do you follow that? Well, I guess one way is to pump classic Rod the mod over the PA as your intro tape then head straight into the title track of that brand new album. That’s one way of keeping this train on track as this six-piece set off as they meant to go on – there was no time for mucking about there was music to play and the audience seemed intent on having the best of times as the Digressions seemed duly obliged to deliver. ‘That World’  was dispatched and the band seemed to settle back and just clicked from Gaff’s empathetic lead guitar breaks to Kit Swings searing vocals. Andy (Brook) knew when to fill in and when to ease back on the keyboards it was a delight to hear such an accomplished set delivered by such a talented band. The rhythm section of Simon and Ricky locked everything down which left the room for  Rags to lead everyone down his ‘Story Highway’ as songs like ‘Lose With Me’ took on a life of their own and sounded huge.

‘Scotty Thompson’ had swagger and it must have been great for the band to hear people singing back on tracks like ‘Later Than It Is’ considering it has only been available to pledgers thus far but it seems people have really taken to this side of Rags music and it might be less of a good time party band that Role Models is  but that doesn’t mean its not about a good time because this is the best of times folks, make no mistake. Hearing the fourth band tonight with a new record in hand and just available it was a real pleasure. Considering the quality on offer I think it’s staggering it’s in the Black Heart and not somewhere five times the size such has been the standard on show. (maybe next time)

There was just about time for a Digressions take on Tom Petty’s ‘Listen To Her Heart’ before a really great version of ‘Easy’ before they ended the set with a spectacular ‘Your Distance’. That was too quick the set just flew by but before the curtain was drawn on a brilliant nights entertainment ol’ Rags was on stage alone lapping up the applause from the audience as he led them through an impromptu ‘Born To Lose’.  Johnny would have been proud of that one that’s for sure!

We came we saw we conquered – Four bands just kicked Camden’s backside make no mistake about that.  Four bands that deserve fantastic futures and every column inch of praise for writing and performing music that matters and doing it to such high standards – Goodnight Black Heart it’s been emotional. But oh so good can we do it again sometime?

Rich Ragany & The Digressions is available Here

More Kicks available Here

The Speedways available Here

The Spangles available Here

 

Author: Dom Daley

 

Ahead of a Headline show in London, that in the past with his band Role Models has sold out RPM caught up with Rags who was under his duvet sucking on some Honey and Lemons throwing off Manflu before Friday nights showdown with More Kicks, The Speedways and The Spangles. Friday night in London Town is always a special show and this one looks set to sell out again and with that line up its going to be memorable (Tickets Here

So Rags first things first – Friday night.  what a fantastic lineup. It must be great to get the support of some really excellent bands for what will be one hell of a nights entertainment right? I know! And the best thing is that all those bands sharing the stage with us are also really close pals! It’s gonna be a crazy party!

Who’s playing in the band Friday?  Is it the same line up that appeared on the recordings?  It’ll be the full lineup on Friday. While it is the kinda band that can play in various incarnations, acoustic duo, piano and vocals and all the way to full volume and huge sounding, we are trying to do as many as we can with all of us.

You recently shot a video for one of the tracks.  Care to elaborate on that for us? When can we see it?
 It’s for the song “Your Distance” and it’s in the editing stages right now. Shot by our good pal Craig Temple. What I’ve seen looks great so far! Can’t wait to share it! I don’t even look like a goblin in it! Loook out!
The BBC has aired a few tracks off the album as well which must be great. Finally, the word is spreading?  what have they had to say about the tracks? Now if Radio two or six would like to jump on board that would be good right?  Yes! It really is a thrill to hear your song on the radio! They have been playing “Your Distance” and “That World”. The latter was the “Track Of The Week” last week as well! There is also really cool news concerning the BBC that I’m afraid I will have to wait on, but I can say we are super excited about it!
What else is planned for The Digressions with Rich Ragany? how about some TV? more live dates?  More live dates and we are working on our second album. I have pretty much written it and the band is putting their incredible touches on it as we speak. Having said that, I think we are gonna let the ideas breathe a bit and not rush. I have done four full-lengths in 4 years now, and, while proud of the accomplishment, I feel I have jumped quick, not letting the previous release have a chance, ya know. But don’t worry! I can’t sit still. And the band is firing on all cylinders creatively.
Do you approach this band the same as Role Models?  I know its a different lineup and different feel to the songs but they share the same DNA and a lot of the personnel is the same will there be any of your other songs played in the set?  I’ll leave that for a surprise.
I’m really excited to hear the full band play the songs off ‘…Like We’ll Never Make It…’  those guys seem to have such a positive energy about them it must be a lot of fun to be around those very talented guys it must be said.  Yes! The chemistry is so wonderful. Nothing like making music with people ya love! I bet it is showing through. I am pretty lucky to be in two situations where the members are family! We are gonna tear it up!
Will you be looking for dates around the UK and maybe some festival dates this coming summer?  Yes sir! Like I said more live dates and chances to drink other bands under the table! I love that our band has this open, jangly positive sound, yet, and this is pretty common knowledge, we are a bit more nuts than most hahahahaha! All good clean fun kids. Leave it to the pros!
 
The Black Heart is sort of your home turf with some pretty memorable shows there with Role Models what are people going to get on the night? They are gonna get us playing and singin’ our hearts out and smilin’ and shots and jokes and tears and… You get it!
You must be stoked with the feedback for the album so far.  The press and bloggers and websites have loved it and really jumped on board with the music which must be pleasing? I am very pleased. A lot of people say reviews and such don’t matter, but I think they do. Especially when they’re coming from a wide cross-section of the media. Blogs and online magazines to print mags from the United States to Europe to the UK. The fact the songs have been received warmly, and have had people that far and wide champion it, means a whole lot to me. To us.
Well, there you have it folks, Rich Ragany & The Digressions live on Friday the 25th January  @ The Black Heart Camden Town London. See you down the front
Buy Rich Ragany & The Digressions and Role Models Here

Camden Black Heart – January 25th a Friday London Town. Roll up, roll up. As the festive period is upon us what better way to show your loved ones that you care than with a ticket for the hottest show in town?  Damn it’ll be the only show in town.  Camden Black Heart is the place to be and the date to pencil into your diaries is Friday 25th January. Tickets are available Here. Just to let you good people know that this will sell out make no mistake about that and with a line up that boasts The Spangles, The Speedways and More Kicks this isn’t the time to sit on your hands and wait.

 

We spoke to Rags who was so excited about this line up for his solo album release show he could hardly get his words out (those who know Rags will find that hard to believe and therefore appreciate just how excited he was/is) All the bands on the bill have brand new records out or on the way and its an exciting time for Rock and Roll so this isn’t a show you want to miss folks trust me.

We’ve already reviewed The Speedways and Rags albums but don’t take our word for it look what others have already been saying about …Like We’ll Never Make It…

“Rock ‘n’ roll doesn’t get more genuine than this. This is the life-affirming gospel according to Rags. Buy it”. Ginge Knievil – Mass Movement Magazine

“Cult power-pop alchemist aims high with perfectly executed crossover album” 9/10 – VIVE LE ROCK

“Like We’ll Never Make It” is a collection that, if it came from across the pond, would see the protagonist hailed as an Americana superstar, over here it is the work of a gifted songwriter and a fine band. Rating 9/10 – MaximumVolumeMusic 
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WITH SPECIAL GUESTS…

MORE KICKS – London Power-pop upstarts. Incredible live band with killer songs that will be fresh off a tour of Spain.
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THE SPEEDWAYS – Another amazing band that Radio Free Amaericana descibes as “…like a cross between the Nerves and The Ramones” They are NOT WRONG!

The Spangles – Punk Rock n Roll from members of well-loved bands The Main Grains And The Idol Dead. Another live detonation ready to be ignited!

Tickets Here