Happy New Year! - January 2019
Back in the practise room working hard on eight tracks to add to the ones we have in the bag already, with the prospect of a great gig on 1st February in the Cobbles Rock Bar in Louth. First practise saw us blow the dust off a few of our favourites, - Ozzy - I Don't Wanna Stop, Audioslave - Show Me How to Live, Velvet Revolver - Slither and Wolfmother - Joker and the Thief, all in preparation for Cobbles Bar. Everyone was pumped up afterwards (especially Jesus who loves the heavier side of what we do)
Mockers event: We are teaming up with the ex-kittens for an event in march, where the scooter crowd and the rockers can get together so hence - mods & rockers = mockers. We are charging £3 entry to cover costs and the band that sells the most tickets will headline the event. Either way it will be 45 min sets, with two per band alternating. Everyone attending will get a badge instead of a paper ticket which we think is pretty cool and a nice memento. We're also planning to print a few t-shirts for those who want one and will sell these at cost price.
Cobbles bar - Louth
First time for us in Louth - and not a disappointment. Aside from the snow and impending doom of not being able to get home, we had a cracking gig. The layout of the venue was a little strange with us all being in a line from front to back, meaning that if you wanted to see the entire band in one frame we would have had to lean out in one shot, similar to heads poking round a corner, however the venue had built in cables for sound and an array of lights so once we got used to the fact that if you were watching all you would see was speedy and axle we were fine. The night was a huge success and a rebook was agreed for later in the year. The landlord/owner was originally an acquaintance we met when doing a biker rally in derby some two years earlier so was good to see him again.
Adam and Eve - Lincoln
A return to this fine venue meant a whole year since last time due to a cancellation late last year for Speedy's thumb operation. This is possibly the best pub in Lincoln, great beers and a fantastic supporter of live music. We had nine new tracks for this venue due to the time elapsed since our last visit, so we treated them to a fine tuned performance with Steg in fine form and feeling very comfortable on drums. He's really slotted in rather well and we are very lucky to have him - definitely the best rock drummer in the whole of Lincoln and the surrounding area - if you don't believe us then you should come to a gig and see for yourself #lincolnsneilpeart!
Lion and royal - navenby
Whoop whoop! - top event for the lovely people of Navenby - a first outing for 'word up', and 'jump' went down well. Despite it being a quiet evening in terms of number, those that were there made a great deal of noise and showed their appreciation. We were happy with the evening as we had a full house of people who had paid for the mockers event the following weekend , some of whom were local to Navenby, so were likely to be saving themselves for the following Saturday.
Mockers No1 - Liquor Bar - Lincoln
Last year we hatched a plan to do a 'mods and rockers' evening with sister band the 'ex-kittens' with alternating sets and whoever sold the most tickets as headliners. Liquor bar takes 110 people and we sold 88 tickets so the trophy honours were ours! We had an absolute blast! We had a full light show controlled via foot pedals built by 'Tech Tone' (thanks) - for those who don't know 'Tech Tone' looks after all our guitars, equipment amps etc and really sorts out the technical side of things for us. (we would be lost without his wisdom - some say he has a brain the size of a planet!). We got some great photos thanks to Beki Doig who is the official photographer for the engine shed in Lincoln. Jump made its second outing and brought the house down. The ex-kittens were awesome and the whole evening was a huge success and we are looking at doing a similar event in 2021. Excellent kebab
The Still - Lincoln
Landlady's birthday so we were on fine form - again its been a while since we have been here but it proved to be a great evening with john the landlord worshipping the ground speedy walked on - john has a few guitars and loves a live band - we invited him to learn a track for next time so he can get 'hands on'. There was a fine set of 'dancing ladies' to entertain and proposition axle, who remained professional throughout. Much hilarity to do with stealing his mic stand and lowering it to its minimum kept us amused throughout. 'Jump' made its third appearance and was well received and a rebook for September to boot! - job done :) . Kebabs were great
Sun inn - Saxilby
Only a single gig for us this month and it turned out to be a cracker - at arrival at the sun inn, it appeared as if the four people there were more interested in playing pool than the prospect of a live band. 'Al the Mud' was in tow (and later in the evening we witnessed him dancing - at least we think that's what it was - more like a slow windmill fight - a little like a goth wearing a shirt that a cat who had eaten a bag of skittles and then been sick on), so we dispatched him to the other pub in Saxilby while we set up, intent on trying to drag some of their drinkers in the direction of the sun. By the time soundcheck happened people had begun to arrive in ones and twos and possibly there were 20 - 25 people there when we started. 'Free world' to start followed by our 'Kravitz' tune then 'Figure It Out' and into 'Sharp Dressed Man' - a good start and into the next track as more people kept coming. Next up were 'Foxy' and 'Time is Running Out' and by the time we'd finished those two the pub was getting really busy and people were dancing all across the venue and even those sitting in groups were nodding their heads to the bass drum and the applause getting louder and longer after each track. Our version of 'sweet dreams' had everyone who was going to dance up on their feet and this continued through 'Brownstone' and 'Baker Street' until eventually everyone sort of ran out of steam for 'Ghost' - we've not played this for a while and although a cracking track, its one of the lesser known ones we do and was the signal for people to go to the loo, get another drink or just have a rest. We finished first set with 'Love Walked In' played on two 'Variax' guitars so the acoustic sound was tremendous (tech tone said it was the best version of that we have ever played). Second set started well and had everyone back on their feet with 'Welcome to The Jungle', 'Hush', 'small things and 'basket case' in rapid fire - 'are you gonna be my girl' finished the dancing part and ' Funk Out' saw everyone draw breath before a resurgence for 'tie your mother down'. By this time the place was packed and was tight for space in the dancing area in front of us. Simon played the crowd well and had a couple of impromptu sing along moments towards the end of the second set. 'Crazy Train' cleared the floor (???) But we had them back immediately with our version of 'Zombi', a quick rattle through 'Jump' (steadily becoming a favourite penultimate track) with the show stopping 'dead or alive' to finish the second set. Encores of 'Place Your Hands' and 'Paradise City' concluded the evening with a final nod from the landlord and a green light for one more , it had to be highway to hell' to get everyone singing at the top of their voices. Cracking evening - turned out that the guy who books the bands had forgotten to tell the landlord he had a band so it turned out well in the end - we are trying to agree another date before the end of the year - which we will of course confirm with the landlord as well as the guy who books the bands - who knows what will happen if there's actually some advertising next time eh? Lovely kebab
Golden fleece - Stamford
Bank holiday weekend - what could possibly go wrong? We had a steady trip to Stamford in the van, quite upbeat about a new venue for everyone - holding high expectation of a venue that has live music every weekend and well represented on social media, boasting a fair cross section of genres. Imagine our surprise when we started to set up and looking round at the punters to establish that the entire pub had clearly had a great day and was completely hammered. The biggest give away was the balding chap who was almost asleep save for every 30 seconds shouting at his mate after letting an 'sbd' go in our general direction (euw!). Nevertheless we set up and between putting mic cables about and wiring up monitors the four lads outside treated us to a 25 minute wrestling match which culminated in one of them getting on his mates shoulders to retrieve his loafer from the roof of our van. We started to think about a sound check as they discovered a tennis ball and set about a game of 'one man Wembley' in the square outside the pub. We sound checked and a few people drifted in and out but the place was still fairly light as we started the first set. That was the point things went downhill, people were disinterested and hardly noticed we were there. The four middle aged ladies who were enjoying themselves had clearly been out since opening time and were gyrating at Simon from less than a foot away and getting in his face with various finger gestures and shouting questions about the setlist to him while he was trying to sing - most off-putting, which made it hard to concentrate on the lyrics, never mind anything else. This continued all through the first set until a chap started shouting that he couldn't hear the lyrics over and over again. Sound onstage was ok so we knew the mic was working but he insisted. We sent Jesus out front to investigate (just as 'one man Wembley' fizzled out after 45 mins) and made a few adjustments, however the shape of the pub wasn't great for sound and we did our best. Moaning guy went and the ladies eventually ran out of steam but so did most others and we finished the second set to a headcount of less than 20. At least they clapped and had a few cheers. Barman said we were great and said he wanted us to return later in the year which was confirmation that things were not as bad as it had appeared if we had taken the word of moaning guy - to be fair he came back as we were setting up to say sorry for shouting about it so much, but alas the damage had been done.. Maybe it was the combination of the good weather and a bank holiday weekend. Farty man was still there while we were packing up - why don't we have standard issue gas masks anymore :( not sure we are in a hurry to go back, but we probably owe it another go in 2020. No kebab
Rafa - Newark
Charity event for the army benevolent fund. Three bands 'Stormwyre', 'The Usual Suspects' and 'Conspiracy Rising' headlining. Our friends Stormwyre kicked off the night with a cracking 45 minute set with the highlight for us being a great rendition of the 'Muse' track - 'new born' - the bass playing choosing a tapping technique while singing the operatic Matt Bellamy lyric without missing a note - what a talented guy. Rob on guitar had a great tone and quick fingers and didn't miss a note all night and the drums were tight and expressive - bravo to you! 'The usual suspects' were next with their 45 mins of blues which ranged from some quite upbeat tracks to a couple of death march blues. Highlight for us was their version of the Clapton classic 'Cocaine' - one which we've considered before and cant remember why we haven't done it (??). Next we were up and our 45 mins was over before we knew it but we got an encore shout which we duly obliged. We had a little experiment on the go - we had a full list of possible tracks but left the running order to speedy, who was gauging the reactions as we went along and selecting the set one track at a time. The event raised close to £450 which was a great result for a first attempt at a fundraiser rock evening. Hopefully there will be another opportunity to do something similar next year perhaps . Went to our favourite kebab house
The Rogue Saint - Lincoln
Back on familiar turf and on a high from the Rafa club. Set up time here is quite short as they have their own lights and a dedicated stage area so nothing to move or work around. Always a pleasure to play here as it has a reputation for great atmosphere and music and it sets itself apart in Lincoln as one of the premier live music venues. Apart from that its got great beers and styling too. New tracks to the rogue saint were ' time is running out' which we've not played for a while which got one of the biggest cheers of the night, 'Dr Feelgood' the 'Motley Cru' track - this has gone down well at other venues and great fun to play, but cleared the floor almost instantly, so maybe not one for the saint again. New track 'come on over' by 'royal blood' got everyone bouncing and after a cracking second set a first outing for 'jump' at the saint for last in the second set had everyone jumping about and singing at the top of their voices. We finished off with 'Livin on a Prayer' and ' place your hands' to round off a spectacular evening - why cant all venues be as well supportive and supported as this one? Some of the loudest applause and cheering we've ever had - stark contrast to Stamford which was a fairly similar setlist (the mind boggles) - we are back at the rogue saint at the end of august and already looking forward to it! :) . Kebab was great
The Lion and Royal - Navenby
Our usual set up routine is that the equipment and drums arrive first and begin to set up and then others arrive as soon as they can to do the technical setup and then the singer generally arrives last as there is little (pun intended) that he can do until the drums are up. In this case it was a surprise for him to turn up and barely be able to talk, let alone sing!!! We had to concede there was very little (pun intended) that he could do and rather than struggle self consciously through a set and hurt his vocal chords, it was agreed that we should just make our apologies, pack away and postpone the gig. The last thing we want to do is disappoint people, but also the last thing we want to do is put on a crap show. Sods law if we had played and the vocals were bad, people wouldn't enjoy it and word of mouth is a powerful thing both positive and negative - in this case it would be nothing more than negative. So having agreed that was the best option and the 'adult thing to do' we all 'manned up' and sent simon to tell the landlord - a fairly reasonable choice as everyone else was fine and the faulty item in question (his vocal chords) belong to him so it was clearly his responsibility. Nic the landlord was very understanding and we had a proper chat about the pros and cons and he agreed it would be best for us to pack up and head home. So again apologies to everyone on the night but it was the right decision for everyone. We posted an update on social media as soon as the decision was made, but unfortunately one of the 'clivettes' (the clivettes are our lovely lady following who have been with us since the start and come to as many of our gigs as they can - part of the family that is 'conspiracy rising') arrived having been in the car and didn't get the message so apologies were forthcoming. No kebab tonight
Football vs Cancer - Peterborough
This fine charity event supported by celebrities and ex premiership footballers happens every year and raises a huge amount of money for 'annas hope' charity - they raise a huge amount of money each year to provide support and care for children who are diagnosed with brain tumours and provide additional support for their families and carers. This year we were asked to play at the gala dinner that happens in the evening after the charity match. A fantastic silver service meal and charity auction were our warm up act and we took to the stage around 10:15 to play an hours set to an appreciative 150 diners. We had a fluid set of 15-20 tracks and picked them out as we went along based on how the diners were engaged - after 80 mins we were on our second set of encores and the room was jumping - it was also the hottest day of the year and although the room was air conditioned the room was hot as hell by the time we finished - we loved the night and the event raised just under 15k on the day so well worthwhile and well supported. We hope to be included again next year. Full meal so no need for a kebab
Caythorpe Beer Festival
Weather looked doubtful but having looked at the venue and the weather (sky overhead) forecast we made the decision with the landlord to set up outside within sniffing distance of the BBQ, then do soundcheck and get ready - we were pleased we did and took the landlords advice (he was keen to have us outside) and a fine afternoon we had! Apologies to lady doing the face painting who was at most a couple of feet away from the p.a. (we did warn her) - it was amusing to see her progressively move further away as we went through our set. Much applause from everyone after the opening 'Freeworld', as everyone's relief showed, when the sun came out and bathed us in its glory. We kept the set light because it was a definitely family friendly affair with some 'Bon Jovi' and a rendition of Van Halen's 'Jump' (which went down a storm). Early finish at 5:30 meant a swift pint and burger from the BBQ and home for tea - what a cracking day - booked in for February 1st, 2020 (Saturday night) so looking forward to trying to take the roof off next year
Navigation - Newark
Omg! What a corker - we've played here a bunch of times but this was by far the busiest its been for us - with past events the numbers have been up and down, however this was packed from bar to door for the whole night. We stuck with a combination of Caythorpe beer festival and football vs cancer setlists to ensure we had ne tracks and some stalwart favourites. Highlights of the evening were the magnificent smoke machine giving us the full 'Pink Floyd' effect, the marvellous middle aged 'hotties' dancing to ac/dc and the 'in your face' dancers, giving Simon the 'stare' and hip wiggles, enough to get him thinking about his words. Was a hot night and jeans seemed to be the worst choice of attire and needed a good wringing out afterwards before our usual kebab stop and sprint down the a46 back to Lincoln. Drop off order from Newark is 1. Speedy, 2. Steg, 3. Tech tone (if aboard the mothership) 4. Jesus and 5. Chug - drop offs take 45 mins so can make a long night depending on venue but always worthwhile after a good show - next month we have Cobbles Bar and British Super Bikes at Cadwell :) - kebab was had
Cobbles bar - Louth
Our second visit to this fine establishment - run by music enthusiasts who have their own pa, hardwired into the walls - so playing here is a pleasure, one three counts 1. Set up time is super speed, 2. We get a professional sound mix from behind the bar from guys who know what they are doing (we first met Andy at a biker festival on 20th august 2016 in derby, where he mixed the whole event. That was our fifth gig as a unit!! This was our 71st gig!! The place was packed and it was a hot night but that didn't slow down the dancing any, as we had the whole place bouncing from the off. Since the last visit we had ten new tracks for the night, amongst which were 'the pretender' which went down a storm , 'come on over' which is awesome to play and van Halen's 'Jump' to round off the second set. By the end we were all pretty sweaty and Steg on drums had almost expired in the heat **factbook - Steg uses in excess of 4000 calories drumming per gig** add that exercise to a hot room and you've basically got a bloke playing drums for 120mins in a sauna! We said we would use this as a warm up for Cadwell - to be fair we hit the nail on the head with that one :) p.s,. No kebab tonight
British superbikes - Cadwell Park Race Circuit
It rained, and rained, and rained and then it rained a little more, then rained a lot more... However... inside the marquee we sound checked for 30 mins to make sure we had the best sound possible - Craig, the sound engineer was awesome and never once complained when we asked for more keys/vocals/acoustics (delete as applicable) in our monitors. This year we were the headliners for Friday night and the other band with us was an outfit called 'Project Emily'. They've not got much on the web but they certainly did themselves proud for a first appearance. Our first appearance (in the same Friday support slot) was one of excitement and nerves which soon passed. Three years on and we are better, tighter and now experienced at big events to have chosen an outstanding setlist. We have swapped out some of our 'heavier' tracks for more crowd friendly numbers but without compromising on our approach or direction as a band. We had eleven new to Cadwell tracks to work with in addition to some of our staples, but if you compare year one with year three, there are only four of the original set that are still part of our track listing.
Our stage time was 9:15 so we watched 'Project Emily's set and they did a great job, they sounded great and only a few mistakes that we could see and looked to be nerves rather than anything major -anyhow we took to the stage ad Simon had them in the palm of his hand from the opening bars of 'free world' - no pause and straight into 'welcome to the jungle', 'hush', and then royal blood's 'come on over' started us off at some pace. The crowd were well up for it - bizarrely the rain meant that everyone who came to the marquee actually had made an effort and stayed all night. Highlight f the evening was the entire marquee singing the words of 'Zombi' back to us at full volume - 'Livin' on a Prayer' closed the night with the best crowd dancing ever - encore was 'place your hands' which left the place buzzing after the final chords had faded out - marvellous - see you next year ❤
Rogue saint - Lincoln
Love this place - we took this night to have an on the run setlist - basically this means that as we had over 40 tracks from cobbles bar and Cadwell to choose from we elected to let speedy call out the tracks as he saw during the evening to make sure that the bar was engaged throughout - we played for 2hrs in total including a couple of encores. Much dancing occurred and although we had only a couple of regulars in the audience the place was packed and it was another hot one. Always a good night at the rogue saint so we always try and deliver a good show. Some great dancing from some of 'the lads' to our royal blood tunes and a full on fist bump for Steg from a chap in the audience after 'come on over' (must be a drummer thing - nobody ever fist bumped a rhythm guitarist). Tonight we had some of the loudest cheers and clapping we've ever had and highlight of the night was the reaction to 'the pretender' which brought the house down. Damp squib of the night goes to 'Dr Feelgood' - at least everyone had a chance to go for a pee and get a pint :) we also had a kebab
The Still - Lincoln
This has probably got to be one of Lincoln's biggest success stories, from what was a pub with a questionable reputation to now being ranked in the top division of their brewery's pubs is all down to john the landlord and his committed staff. Tonight was his birthday so we practised hard and set out to make a great night for him - only one problem - he went away for the weekend :( however...…. Not to be deterred we tore the roof off the place in his honour! Taz behind the bar welcomed us and made us feel at home as we set up. Jesus had a dodgy stomach so there was a fair chance we may need a gas mask at some point but we ploughed on and once set up sat back and had a beer waiting for the time to start. 9:15 kick off to a great reception form the Lincoln pride supporters who arrived just as we started. We also had two other birthday celebrators to sing to as well as an international broadcast to john the landlord (wherever he was - apparently it was a secret). There was a hen party complete with bride in full veil and sash who danced inches from Simon and begged to get up and sing. So...The bride sang vocals for 'all the small things' and at approaching 6 feet tall, it was ironic that she was duetting with Simon :) . We played well past midnight and we had to stop for fear of getting complaints - a great night - rebooked and already looking forward to our return. We had a kebab from our usual Lincoln stop off and were rewarded with a free bottle of Pepsi max! Awesome! Very nice people.
The White Swan - Market Rasen
What a great night this was - Jesus had a full steak meal before load in and the stage space was larger than most. What was a little odd was that everyone seated at the start of the gig remained seated all the way through. Apart from those who came to the front to dance, everyone else remained at their respective tables and rocked out there.. Applause happened and also cheers, but it was difficult work out who was cheering or applauding. We had a good time but left a little unsure if we were the entertainment for the night or the background music for everyone's Saturday night meal. Perplexing but prepared to go back to see if it was just an odd night. The venue always has live music so maybe we arrived on "don't get up night"
The Navigation - Newark
This was our second outing without Jesus, so the four piece rolled into Newark with some attitude and chests puffed out. The navigation never disappoints and we had a fantastic night. Much dancing from the capacity crowd with lots of people saying they came for a quick drink and then never left - mission accomplished.
Marquis of Granby - Wellingore
We think of the marquis as 'home territory' as it is pretty much our Vegus as far as venues is concerned, however this night seemed different and with the benefit of hind sight the landlord (soon to close their doors) wasn't that enthusiastic and failed to promote our gig. As much as we use social media it always helps if the venue tries to attract people. As it happens there was a good appreciative crowd of merry makers and a good night was had by all (including a 40th birthday party who came to see us). Seemed that if we hadn't brought our people and the birthday crew the pub would've been empty - the pub has since changed hands but we're not sure we will rush back. Shame really as we've previously filled the place to capacity (and more)
The Sun Inn - Saxilby
What a great night this was - everyone was up for it and a guy who grabbed the tambourine was awesome - more in tune than Simon and more in time than him too. A cracking night had by all and the first outing for 'sweet child o mine' - we've resisted playing this from day one but finally decided that as most bands 'murder' it, that we should give it a go. To be fair we do a great job of it and speedy nails the technically difficult part in the middle of the solo (where the wah kicks in) with dexterity, note for note. For rhythm guitar its a fairly pedestrian affair, but also a great opportunity to rock out - everybody love this track, and for the 'muso's' out there we would like to think they nod in our direction of being true to the original.
The Adam & Eve - Lincoln
Our final 2019 gig was a stormer with us in fine form and rolling out a few new tracks for the Adam and eve massive. A full house enjoyed what we had to offer and we played o past the curfew, encouraged by the landlord to play an extra tune or two. We've said before that this is one of the best pubs in Lincoln so if you ever find yourself visiting, be sure to check it out for food and beers. We will be here next year for a couple of dates as well as seeing in the new year 2021
No gigs in December so an opportunity to work on some new tracks and finally get round to working out a full 3 hrs of acoustic arrangements for an "unplugged" style show which we have been wanting to put together for almost a year.. We had a Christmas band night out at night to celebrate 2019 and plan for 2020 (and beyond) which was a cracking night with talk of new arrangements and potential projects we would like to do. We have been confirmed for the British Motorcycle Federation 60th birthday bash in Peebles in may 2020, and asked to headline at BSB Cadwell again (hugely proud to do so). All things considered we have had a great 2019 and thank every venue, every person who has been to see us and all our families for their continued support. 2020 gigs are almost full (see the gig page) so we have a full calendar to work with which is testimony to the practice we put in and attention to detail. As venues fall away or close it is always difficult to find new places to play but equally so, it is always a great compliment to be asked to return to those places that continue to promote live music and blossom