New Model Army/The Virginmarys - Swansea, Sin City - March 22nd 2010 Print E-mail
Written by Dom Daley   
Thursday, 01 April 2010 05:00

newmodelarmyposterHaving looked 'em up before going to the gig and being mightily impressed with what I'd read and the snatches of music I'd heard, I find myself in the venue just after the doors opened, looking forward to catching the Virginmarys.


A three piece band take the stage, fairly low key and pretty unassuming and then BANG!!!! I was hit by a ferkin' Mack Truck doing 110mph or so it seemed anyway. Nose bleed loud and you can tell there is something alluring about The Virginmarys. Taking on the New Model Army tour hot off the back of a tour with Über Friends Gun and about to head out with GMT when they get off this string of dates, they're busy honing the skills of their craft by treading the boards as much as possible. With an album out sometime in May this band are brandishing a fairly hefty set of bollocks and rocking out big time. Ally, Danny and Matt sure do make a hellish din kicking seven shades out of their instruments and the drummer Danny has a big assed gong as well and plays his kit like there is no tomorrow and his life might depend on it - a fantastic spectacle of flailing arms and hair. 


But the songs you ask, what about the songs? Well, they're loud and heavy and rocking. they also have melody and a groove so what else do you need? I'm excited about the Virginmarys and so should you be. On this evidence they have the chops to make the grade no doubt about it. 'Cast The First Stone' sounds huge and destined to fill stadiums, 'Portrait Of Red' is another belter that gets aired. Isn't this what rock 'n' roll is all about? Excitement, energy, great songs, danger, passion and power. Remember the name - The Virginmarys. 2010 could well be their year!

Slade the leveller or Justin Sullivan whatever you call him these days, has been staring out audiences for 30 years and has a mightily impressive back catalogue. In a fairly busy venue for a Monday night it soon turns into a writhing sweaty pit of 40 somethings bouncing off one another just like 1984 had never happened. Playing songs from way back off the 'Ghost Of Cain' album, 'No Rest' mixed with songs off the excellent new album 'Today Is A Good Day', the title track being a case in point and a beast of a riff to boot which sounds as ferocious as it does on the record. Sullivan looks sprightly and happy to be plying his craft as he conducts the proceedings from stage centre as he beams through 'White Coats', 'High' and the classic and career high point 'Green And Grey'. It's over all to soon. Whilst we get some gems isn't it always the case with bands who have so many great songs that you leave wishing they did this one and that one but hey maybe next time well get 'Vengeance' or '51st State' but there are only so many songs that can get played in almost two hours of raw, live, melody. To still be playing with such verve and passion after 30 years is testament in itself to the the music that just keeps getting better with age. What else would one do on a cold wet Monday night? God bless the New Model Army.