Oh, the joy of pegging it up the M4 on a Saturday evening to catch three bands who are playing on a five-band bill kicking off at 7 pm sharp. South Wales Deathtraps are first up on this autumnal evening and with a healthy audience in they get on with the task of shaking off any cobwebs and rattling a few bones with their take on all things garage punk. I believe bass player Fraser is trying his damnedest to lure punters into buying their brand new launched the day before second album ‘Gotta Get Some’ and as they preview choice cuts from the mentioned CD they sound tight and pretty bloody good if truth be told.  Playing to an audience who generally aren’t aware of their music up until this point they engage in some banter during the breaks and give it some welly when the instruments are hit. When songs like ‘Automatic Thrill’ and the laid back ‘Get Loose’ are aired the audience move and applaud in appreciation for what’s pounding out of the PA These boys know how to write this garage punk and clearly love it.  Benefitting from playing a few gigs the future looks rosy for this three-piece who have more than a decent tune or two in their arsenal and they’ll definitely get better and we need that in the UK right now.

Heading over to the UK for another round with their dysfunctional extended family The Hip Priests Basle based Bitch Queens (try saying that after a few dry ciders) haven’t got time to mess about and just get down to business and as previous encounters testified they really have the chops to pull off this garage hard rock dueling guitars gig to an absolute tee.  Starting with the lead track off their last studio album ‘L.O.V.E’, ‘Anti Social’ is the perfect floor filler as bodies right from the off get flung around the venue. With a set mainly populated with tunes  from their last long player it’s a joy to see and hear a band come to shit island and have their finger right on the pulse as  ‘Anti Social’ is a perfect song for early doors and as the band sound fantastic and right up for the challenge tonight as they prepare to duke it out with tonight’s headliners and show that there are bands out there who get this Rock and Roll lark and duel with the biggest and best No matter what venue or how many people are in attendance and this deadbeat generation has something to offer.

With time at a premium they proceed to smash out a really energetic set that is really well appreciated from ‘R-Rated’  through ‘Naked Or Denim’ singer Mel is crowd surfing with his guitar in tow and without dropping a note makes it back on the stage in time to close with the magnificent ‘Techno Is Dead’ that has the band purring like a finely tuned muscle car and if ever a band had a song that put a huge flag in the sand that said follow that fuckers then that was it.  A really excellent set to hand the baton over to tonight’s headliner.

Amazingly this was to be the first time I’m witnessing the Hip Priests as a five-piece after having witnessed them with several drummers also present when they performed as a three piece and after hearing firsthand accounts of how good this new line up is sounding I was getting excited.

With a new album in the bag and off the back of their finest 12” single and most ambitious release to date these were good time for the Hip Priests and having such an impressive undercard it was time for the band to come out swinging and that they duly obliged with a pulverising ‘Instant Delinquent’ followed by ‘Motherfucker superior’ and not even a broken lead instantly followed by a broken string can derail this juggernaut when its rolling and with the addition of Silent Mike this freight train was kept on the rails as ‘Zero Fuck’ were most defiantly given.  It only seemed to fuel Austin who played harder and flew the middle finger in the face of adversity.

The tunes kept coming in devastating frequency as ‘Jesus Died’ was the prelude to a filthy barking version of ‘Loose’ that I’m sure the brother Ashton would certainly have approved of. Always adhering to the old adage of always leave the punters wanting more and never outstay your welcome so ‘Cheers To Me’ made way to the classic that is ‘Sonic Reproducer’ which only left time for ‘Wired Amped Skulled’ and that ladies and gents was it. Adios Amigos and into the balmy night we trouped having witnessed yet another fantastic evening in the company of some awesome bands who are doing it their way and slowly but surely building quite the formidable repertoire and with the likes of Deathtraps and Bitch Queens offering their own takes on this garage punk business the future looks bright or it should do if there was any justice.Hip Priests Facebook 

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