With support from The Trews and Deadcuts.

The O2 Academy3 Birmingham 8th October 2014.

Note to self – Birmingham on an October school night can be wet, windy and pretty dismal and in a situation like that, the only thing to do is to head on over to where the music is playing.

But as grim as my evening had started of being, I think it paled into insignificance compared to the day that our opening band, the Deadcuts must have been having. With their anticipated start time seeing their stage set up still under way, you just knew that their best made plans hadn’t quite work out as hoped. Never the less, the Deadcuts remained focused on the task in hand and with enough time remaining for them to give the early evening crowd at the O2 Academy3 a shortened version of their previously planned set, the evening finally got underway. I found the sound and style of the Deadcuts to be quite a musical enigma that sits somewhere between the pillars of art and indie. With a cavern of creativity in-between and being full of this bands amazing songwriting ability, it really would have been good to have had more time to take everything in, but tonight wasn’t to be the night for that. So here’s looking forward to the next time that the Deadcuts make the trip back up to the West Midlands and the chance to catch their set in full.

Mark McCarthy

Nova Scotia in Canada is quite a distance from Birmingham in the West Midlands but the name and musical reputation of The Trews had made short work of that journey and there was a hearty welcome awaiting the band as they took to the stage tonight. With over a decade in existence, the band have crafted an ingenious smooth and elegant style of hard rocking music that is popular in many a country worldwide and after seeing The Trews set tonight, there was no doubt in my mind as to why this is so.

Colin MacDonald

With their latest and fifth album ’Rise In The Wake’ being a big hitter in Canada, I was really hoping we would get to hear a few tracks from it and it was to be my lucky night, with an outstanding performance of the albums titled track being delivered. The next time that The Trews make the journey back to our shores, they really are a must see band – and here’s hoping we see them back here again soon!

Jack Syperek

With a name like Supersuckers and a self penned prophecy from the band of being “the greatest rock ‘n’ roll band in the world”, I already had the feeling in advance of tonight, that our headline act was gonna fit well within the crazy wild side of life and you know what – I wasn’t wrong!

Eddie Spaghetti

In the knowledge that tonight’s show was the bands 27th consecutive night on tour, they could have been forgiven if they didn’t live up to such an expectation but Supersuckers are not a band to take their rock ‘n’ roll lying down and throughout the entirety of their set, the band were never anything less than outstanding. I have to big it up for their die hard and dance hard fans aswell, as here we had an audience hell bent on enjoying every last minute that they could grab, in the company of Supersuckers.

Dan 'Thunder' Bolton

With so many great tracks to their name, tonight’s set list played out like a Christmas wish list, but with particular favourites being ‘ Get The Hell’, ‘Rock ‘n Roll Records’ and ’Born With A Tail’ .

'Metal' Marty Chandler

Tonight was one of those gigs that people still talk and smile about weeks later and music224 would like to shout out a big ‘Hell Yeah’ to The Deadcuts, The Trews and Supersuckers for letting us be part of it!

Words and Photography by Sue Wardle.

Ultimate Eagles

Hell Froze Over Tour.

The Robin2 Bilston 23rd September 2014.

I’m not one to wish away those glorious days of summer, but the onset of Autumn this year had special meaning as it heralded the start of the Ultimate Eagles nineteen date ‘Hell Froze Over’ tour.

With each and every year that passes, my anticipation of the next Ultimate Eagle’s tour is ever present, and I’m not alone in that mindset either as since the onset of this band back in 2010, their many outstanding performances across the UK and Europe have attracted praise from thousands of concert goers and which ever gig you attend, you will always find a loyal army of fans ever present.

Chris Childs

The ‘Hell Froze Over’ tour see’s the Ultimate Eagles making acoustic representation of The Eagles 1994 album “Hell Freezes Over’’, which is an album that contains a fair few favourite tracks for us Eagle aficionados. The tour also holds the undoubtable promise of seeing Christian Phillips, Chris Wright, Danny Vaughn, Michael Lawrence and Chris Childs take to the stage in a union that never fails to deliver maximum enjoyment. Sadly, Ryan Aston was not able to partake in this tour but taking up the drum seat in his absence was Rhys Morgan.

Rhys Morgan

In conjunction with the ‘Hell Freezes Over’ Tour, and to mark it’s acoustic nature, the band have released ‘Bare Bones’, which in my opinion, is a twelve track pleasure! With several of its songs featuring throughout the Ultimate Eagles performance, this is an album that is set to ignite the memory through reliving many of the great musical highlights of this tour, so for those who didn’t purchase a copy but wished they had, fear not, as the CD can still be purchased directly from the bands website.

Michael Lawrence

With cheers and applause from the audience at The Robin2 that were as warm and welcoming as the vibrant stage lighting, the Ultimate Eagles took to the stage and the first half of tonight’s set began. It was quickly apparent that no detail, no matter how small, had been overlooked, as the haunting strains of Chris Wright’s acoustic guitar and the calm sereneness on stage captured the moment beautifully and was nothing short of spellbinding.

Chris Wright

The vocal abilities of the Ultimate Eagles are without doubt always outstanding and when matched with tonight’s acoustic ambience, the emotion behind the lyrics of The Eagles powerful songs really rang out with crystal clarity. For me and for that very reason, the highlight’s from the first half of tonight’s show had to be ’Heart Of The Matter’ and ‘New York Minute’, with both Messrs Danny Vaughn and Michael Lawrence capturing the moment perfectly.

Danny Vaughn

As the lights came up for the second half of tonight’s show, the classic tracks from ‘Hell Froze Over’ were set to continue and as much as the Ultimate Eagles strive to capture the authenticity of those songs made great by The Eagles themselves, they do so in a manner that is completely their own. Having seen the UE’s perform live on many an occasion and listened to their recorded material on a regular basis, once again I found myself reflecting and marvelling upon their attention for detail.

Christian Phillips

The ‘Hell Froze Over Tour’ has seen the Ultimate Eagles take their show to a new level of performance in theatres several times larger than the comparable setting of The Robin2. And with that though in mind, tonight’s show has to be seen as something a little bit special and one that sits amongst the highlights of my concert going year but as always, I look forward to the next tour so roll on 2015!

Set List 1.Hotel California (acoustic) 2.Tequila Sunrise 3.Help me through the night 4.Heart of the matter 5.Love will keep us alive 6.Pretty Maids 7.Wasted time 8.I can’t tell you why 9.New York Minute 10.Last Resort 11.Seven Bridges 12.Take it easy 13.One of these nights 14.New Kid in town 15.Lyin Eyes 16.Take it to the Limit 17.In the City 18.Get over it 19.Heartache tonight 20.Life in the fast lane 21.Desperado

Words and Photography by Sue Wardle.


Conjuring The Dead – Album Review.

For those who are unaware of Belphegor, they are a Black/Death metal band from the little country of Austria. Forming in 1993, and now releasing their 10th opus, “Conjuring the dead”. I, for one, was unaware but quickly got myself acquainted with this black metal outfit and I have to say, I was pleasently surprised.


Lead single/opening track “Gasmask Terror” lays it all out from the very start with its frantic riffing and demonic screams making you feel rather uncomfortable as if you were entering the fiery gates of hell. And the discomfort doesn’t stop there….

Now, black metal is not my thing at all but I am a fan of the atmosphere it can create at times and there are several examples on “Conjuring the dead”, notably on the track ‘Rex Tremendae Majestatis’ with its string and acoustic passages which really got me hooked as it is a really effective dynamic that conjures all manner of evil vibes.

And its not all break neck speed, there are some really tasty riffs that you can grasp and grooves that will get you head banging as well as the usual blast/thrash beats that build an intensity that is perhaps more a kin to the style of metal.

After a soothing, almost classic metal sounding instrumental (The Eyes) ‘Legions of Destruction’ smashes you like a sledge hammer right in the temple and is quickly followed by one of the most terrifying moments on the album – ‘Lucifer, take her’ where a female guest appearence screams add even more fear to an already frightening tale, brilliant stuff.

The album closes in style with ‘Pactum in Aeternum’ – acoustic guitars, twisted sound effects and creepy vocals leaving this reviewer, slightly disturbed and confused….maybe black metal could be for me after all.


The Purple Piper.