There are few better small venues in the UK than Wakefield’s Snooty Fox. Malc and the team there always manage to get the best sound-wise out of all the bands who play, ensuring a great night out for both bands and fans.
That’s why it’s the home of CackBlabbath’s Twitrfest.
I have seen some brilliant, previously unknown (to me) bands there over the years, so when Down The Machine said they were playing at a charity all-dayer I decided to make the arduous trip up the M1 (takes a whole 20 minutes) to check out some of the talent on show (and have a play with the new flash I’d just bought for the camera).
Well, I say charity gig, but unlike any I have been to before. It was almost impossible to find out who was playing as there wasn’t much in the way of promotion, and entry was free….
You know when you discover a new band for the first time, and you leave the gig thinking “Wow, were they really that good ?”, well 24 hours after my first experience of The Idol Dead live, I’m still not entirely sure of the answer to that.
All I can say, is I f’kin enjoyed them…. lots.
Genre-wise, I guess you’d have to group them with the whole 80s sleaze-rock scene. You know the sort of thing, loads of dirty riffs and hook-laden sing along choruses. Vibe-wise think Hanoi Rocks meet The New York Dolls over a bottle of bourbon.
I always love a band with a bit of stage presence, and on that front The Idol Dead are certainly not found wanting. The way front man Polly Phluid came out of the traps flat out for the opener Blue Skies evoked a time when front men were entertainers, and not just singers. Been a while since I’ve seen a guitarist break a string in the first 30 seconds too…
It was one of those performances that just draws you in. You Don’t Know and Lily White came and went in a blur. When a band is enjoying themselves it shines through in their performance, and by the time they got to Traveling Man I was hooked. Here were a band who evoked the spirit that first got me into live music in the first place
As this was my first experience of the band I’m no expert on their material, but with singalong choruses like the one in Suzi Choo it’s not that hard to pick up the words and join in.
The set finished with their self-referential I.D.O.L. which saw Polly competing with the closing stages of the England Vs Italy European Championship match, but still managing to get a decent response to his request, nay demand, for some audience participation.
Live music should be all about this, getting out to venues like The Snooty Fox and discovering your next favourite band. Mega festivals and Academies have their appeal for sure, but it’s nights like this one that memories are made of..
And, of course, the bragging rights of “I saw them play a pub in Wakefield” when they’re famous