Gig Reviews
CKY/Graveyard Johnnys – Birmingham, O2 Academy – 13 May 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Rich Hobson   
Saturday, 27 May 2017 04:30

CKY Birmingham 1Absence makes the heart grow fonder, or at least that’s how the saying goes. With bands, absence can stoke the flames of passion, supercharging a band’s popularity to the point where they could be even bigger than they were in their glory days, or it can prove detrimental, with bands falling by the wayside due to lack of activity and a failure to capitalize on any previous momentum. Rich Hobson dives right in to the front of the stage to find out how CKY have trodden the former path:

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Big Business/Whores./History of Sex – Birmingham, Mama Roux – 4 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Rich Hobson   
Saturday, 27 May 2017 04:00

Big BusinessBills don’t come much noisier or more furious than the double-bill of Whores. and Big Business, two of the hardest-hitting, noisiest punk bands from the US. Our man Rich Hobson availed of the opportunity to get eye-wateringly, ear-splittingly close to the harsh crème de la crème of modern noise punk - in a stylish, New Orleans inspired bar… Click the link to find out more:

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Black Spiders/Bigfoot/Grifter – Southampton, Joiners - 30 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Phil Cooper   
Saturday, 13 May 2017 04:30

BlackSpiders 3  HRH DvS II Sheffield2016Living on the Isle of Wight has many good points – but, as Phil Cooper will tell you, travelling to and from gigs isn’t one of them, especially when said gigs run past the time of the last ferry home… nevertheless, it didn’t put our man off enjoying what he could of the Black Spiders’ recent farewell tour when it found its way to the south coast:

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Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses Semi-Final 2 – Belfast, Voodoo – 5 May 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby and The Dark Queen   
Friday, 12 May 2017 04:00

OracleThe quest to find the hottest new bands to perform at this year’s Bloodstock festival is well and truly under way all over the British Isles, and beyond.  In some regions, the annual Metal 2 The Masses competition is entering its climactic stages.  Such is the case in Belfast, where Mark Ashby and The Dark Queen were on hand to see which metal warriors would battle their way through to the grand finale and take a step further towards a coveted slot on the New Blood stage at Catton Park in August:

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Handmade Festival 2017 – Leicester, University - Sunday 30 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Rich Hobson   
Saturday, 06 May 2017 05:00

Handmade 2017 logoIf the Saturday of Handmade Festival 2017 taught our man Rich Hobson anything, it was that the UK has a burgeoning rock scene right now, brimming with acts that have plenty of radio appeal and more than a few great riffs to enjoy. Sunday, then, was that scene’s uglier, snottier punk cousin, the line-up stacked with some of the greatest racket inducing acts our nation can produce. Click the link to catch up on all the dirt that went down:

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Ghost/Zombi - Manchester Apollo – 31 March 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Rich Hobson   
Saturday, 06 May 2017 04:00

Ghost - Manchester 3Undoubtedly one of the biggest rising bands in the metal world right now, Ghost have recently finished their mammoth ‘Popestar’ European tour, which kicked off with a run of eight dates in the UK. With just over three months until they return, this time to headline the one and only Bloodstock festival, Rich Hobson recalls the majesty of their massive Manchester show and gives the uninitiated a flavour of what to expect later in the summer:

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Imelda May – Manchester, HMV – 26 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Lindsey Appleton   
Tuesday, 02 May 2017 05:00

Imelda May HMV 1Up until now renowned for her quiff-style haircut and rockabilly image, Irish singer Imelda May has recently undergone something of a transformation to someone more approaching a torch singer, as her deeply personal new album ‘Life, Love, Flesh, Blood’ reveals. Ahead of an extensive UK tour starting this very week, she played a series of low-key instore shows. Über Rock’s Lindsey Appleton wandered down to the last of them in Manchester, for what proved to be an ear and eye opening experience:

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Zeal and Ardor / Pryapisme / Combineharvester – London, Camden Underworld - 20 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Matt Bunting   
Saturday, 29 April 2017 05:00

Zeal and Ardor - Camden 1With their debut album, ‘Devil is Fine’, released to almost universal praise last year, it was understandable that the band’s debut live appearance would be one of the most eagerly anticipated live shows of this year. Our man Matt Bunting was one of the lucky few to get himself a ticket for this sold out gig in the darkest heart of Camden town:

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Necrofest II – Belfast, Voodoo – 22 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby   
Saturday, 29 April 2017 04:30

Psykosis 2It’s very rarely that the Über Rock management team are forced to split up, but with a severe clash of quality gigs in their home city of Belfast last weekend, that’s just what happened, with The Dark Queen heading into the hills of County Antrim for some rock ‘n’ roll and Mark Ashby choosing to get down and heavy, metal style, in one of his favourite bars. Click the link to read his frontline report:

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The Quireboys/Last Great Dreamers – Ahoghill, Diamond Rock Club – 7 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby and The Dark Queen   
Saturday, 22 April 2017 05:00

the-quireboys-10 33610496030 oA couple of weekends back, Mark Ashby and The Dark Queen once again hopped on the beer bus in the centre of Belfast and headed to the hills – quite literally – to catch up with one of the hottest rock ‘n’ roll tours so far this year, in the shape of the pairing of the inimitable Quireboys and the renascent Last Great Dreamers. Click the link to read what went down in the normally quiet village on the outskirts of Ballymena (hey):

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Duncan Reid & The Big Heads/Spizzenergi/Role Models – Camden, The Black Heart – 11 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Dom Daley   
Saturday, 22 April 2017 04:00

Duncan Reid Facebook photoIt was a warm humid night in London, so it must be something special to get Dom Daley up to the big smoke on a school night.  We guess Duncan Reid playing a show to preview his brand new studio album was a good enough reason and having those Role Models on board is the cherry on the icing on the cake, our man reckons. Click the link to get all the punk rock biz:

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Duncan Reid & The Big Heads – ‘Bombs Away‘ (LBH Records) Print E-mail
Written by Dom Daley   
Thursday, 25 May 2017 04:00

7600-cover rgbIn his recent interview with this very website that constantly kicks the ass of musical mediocrity, Duncan Reid admitted that he had never even attempted writing a song during his tenure with The Boys. Now, with his third album since going “solo”, Dom Daley reckons he has honed the craft to nigh on perfection. Click the link to find out why:

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Danny Bryant – Belfast, Empire Music Hall – 27 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby and The Dark Queen   
Saturday, 13 May 2017 04:00

danny-bryant-10 34183640620 oBlues guitarist Danny Bryant recently undertook a short run of dates to promote his appropriately titled ‘Big’ live album: not only is he large in character, but it was recorded with an eight-piece backing band – which left one question for UR bosses Mark Ashby and The Dark Queen… just how was he gonna fit that many musicians onto the tiny stage of a converted church in Belfast? Click the link to find out:

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Vodun/Ten Foot Wizard/Shot Down Zed – Coventry, The Pheonix - 12 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Rich Hobson   
Monday, 08 May 2017 05:00

vodum-1 34375676221 oVisually striking, and with a unique blend of musical styles that most definitely all their own, Vodun definitely are one of the most exciting bands around, especially when they play live. So, Rich Hobson needed no second invitation to fire up his trusty Über-mobile and head down the motorway to Coventry to catch this eclectic and exciting trio in action in a very intimate environment:

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Handmade Festival 2017 – Leicester, University - Saturday 29 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Rich Hobson   
Saturday, 06 May 2017 04:30

Handmade 2017 logoWhile it might not have been exactly sunny for the recent bank holiday weekend, there was still a prevailing sense of “start of the summer” as Rich Hobson and his beautiful lady hit the motorway from Wolverhampton to Leicester for a festival line-up stacked with some of the brightest names in British music right now. Click the link to check out what went down on the first day:

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Therapy? – Belfast, Empire Music Hall – 26 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby   
Wednesday, 03 May 2017 05:00

 DSC5870Like most rock fans of a certain generation in his wee part of the Über Kingdom of Rock ‘N’ Roll, Mark Ashby grew up with one band who stood head and shoulders above any other on the local scene in terms of their innovation and their readiness to experiment, take chances and push musical boundaries further than any of their predecessors or contemporaries (and, it could be argued, many who have tried to follow in their footsteps since). Would it be an experiment too far when a band renowned for their dramatic intensity, especially in their live shows, stripped everything back to such a basic, organic level? Click the link to join in the craic of a truly unique show:

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Happyness/Tandem Felix – Dublin, Whelan’s Bar - 21 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Jonni D   
Monday, 01 May 2017 05:00

Happyness Dublin 1Our man Jonni D is a very happy chappy. It’s just the way he is. So, just imagine his delight when, having reviewed their latest album a while back, he got the offer to travel down to the Fair City of Dublin to share that happiness brought by a band of (almost) the same name. Click the link to find out what he made of the band live:

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Dream Theater – Manchester, O2 Apollo – 19 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Luke Appleton   
Saturday, 29 April 2017 04:30

Dream Theater picSo, this one’s a bit special… because a special gig deserves a special guest reviewer, and we’re delighted to say that, with Dream Theater currently marking the 25th anniversary of their breakthrough ‘Images & Words’, we talked über fan (sic) Luke Appleton, bassist with the mighty Iced Earth, into sharing his thoughts on their recent appearance in his home town:

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HRH Blues – Sheffield, O2 Academy – 15/16 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Mark Ashby and The Dark Queen   
Sunday, 23 April 2017 05:00

simon-mcbride-at-hrh-blues 33779864790 oLast weekend, the Hard Rock Hell team ramped up the volume with their dedicated HRH Blues festival, moving it from an adjunct to the HRH United event to a full-blown weekend shebang with its own dedicated venue. Faced with the prospect of not being able to get a drink, never mind not see a band, in their home town, UR’s Mark Ashby and Dark Queen hotfooted it over to Sheffield to check out some of the onstage action:

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‘Women Of Rock Tour’ – Pontypool, The Dragonffli – 8 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by David O'Neill   
Saturday, 22 April 2017 04:30

Jade-Ball Dan-Fry Digital-CriminalsProving not only that the live music scene is definitely kicking ass in southern Wales, but that the women of rock ‘n’ roll can do so with equal measure to their male companions, David O’Neill once again headed into the valleys to catch this four band bill of diverse bands which well and truly got his weekend off to the best possible start:

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Overoth/Strangle Wire/By Any Means/Lawfucker – Belfast, Voodoo - 15 April 2017 Print E-mail
Written by Jonni D   
Thursday, 20 April 2017 05:00

Overoth - Voodoo 2Northern Ireland’s arcane licensing laws mean that the city virtually closes down over the Easter Bank Holiday weekend, with only a few hardy souls venturing forth to track down the limited amount of entertainment available. One such individual was the brave Jonni D, who managed to find one of a very small handful of gigs which went ahead:

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