“What’s that smell?” ask support Intercom Set, as the distinctly legitimate, rock-club feel of Doncaster’s Vintage Rockbar hangs within the audience. “Rock n’ Roll!” the answer on everyone’s minds that were present to see both them and Headlining ___ U.V Pop up close and personal.
I meet with John White (U.V’s continuous driving force since the founding of the band) in the live room whilst Intercom Set start with their opening number. Having shared a stage with them back in September whilst playing at Tickhill’s ‘T-Fest’, I have been exposed to John’s ambitions during live performances, to keep moving forward with new material, and this night was to be no exception. “We’ll not be playing any of the old favourites tonight” he said, but I was happy to see songs like ‘I Dream’ and ‘Turkey Bones’ making appearances as I checked the set list I’d obtained to help me keep a track of the gig. It was also said that a brand new, never-before heard song titled ‘Made of Stone’ would also be performed on this night.
Anthem-like songs continue to spill out of the stage one after another before Intercom Set’s…. set comes to a successful close. It’s now time, 30+ years of experience and constant forward thinking come together to create a completely original sound, it draws no comparison, this is UV Pop, and nothing else. The opening song ‘Just a Game’ sinks into the crowd. Huge echo, and hypnotic bass hooks, courtesy of Tony Nicholson, leave a stylised impact that will remain for the rest of the evening. Within a short space of time in comes the familiar, tremolo heavy, ‘Anyone For Me’ a hauntingly spacious number that wouldn’t be out of place being the soundtrack for a psychedelic art installation on mars…
When the final echo finally dies down our personal tour of the collective mind of UV Pop begins in the form of ‘Lucky Star’ travelling towards the impression of cynical happiness before crashing into a funked-up rendition of ‘I Dream’, which lightens the mood drastically. On the height of this joy arrives ‘Mr Mystery’ a simplistically intriguing number that is a smooth juxtaposition to the previous number.
The new song ‘Made Of Stone’ is surprising, in that it seems to completely encapsulate the feel of the band in one track. Drummer Steven Howse, has shifted at this point to using a sample pad at the side of the kit to create a simple loop-styled drum beat with a more definite human touch. While the rhythm of the song is definitely reminiscent of early UV, John’s personal, arpeggiated guitar parts are much closer to the more recent material, leaving a good gateway into the Jive-Worthy ‘Turkey Bones’.
There’s a reason that this band have had such a long career, it’s because there’s nothing else like it, and it has to be seen live to be truly understood. If you want to know your musical heritage as a citizen of Doncaster, UV Pop is the place to start.
Grease back that hair, pull on those polkadot dresses and get your fine looking self down to the Rockabilly Revel at the recently re-opened Hallcross, on the 1st February!!
…Alright, so strictly speaking, the music on offer isn’t rockabilly: it’s far more eclectic than that. However, it was the one word we felt encapsulated the raw energy, the originality and attitude all three live acts have in common.
First up is Haworth, soulfully singing his very own brand of acoustic folk in a way that will have you hanging on to his every word. With music that is filled with pure and simple honesty, Haworth brings a subtle melodic serenity to everywhere he plays. If you haven’t had the joy of discovering him already, make sure you come and check him out.
Haworth’s single “Anything” is currently available to download via iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/anything-single/id733265527
A hard act to follow, but follow him we must…and how!!
Doncaster’s very own Dead Man’s Boots are next to grace the stage to treat you all with some good ol’ grungy country punk tinged with psychobilly. Raunchy, raucous and wild, DMB play with a foot stomping energy that is hard to resist: demonstrating exactly why Doncaster’s local music scene should be better supported. Currently recording their début E.P, you can next catch the Boots at the Vintage Rockbar 15th February and keep up to date through their Facebook page:
This brings us to the headline act and your hosts for the evening…
Shaggy Dog Story are a psychofolkabilly trio based in Doncaster. SDS play their own unique blend of swampy blues riffs, foot-tapping rockabilly rhythms and strong folk harmonies. Eclectic, eccentric and looking as if they’ve rolled out of a vintage jumble sale, the “Shaggies” have built up a cult following around South Yorkshire & have become known for their energetic performances and onstage banter. A feel-good party band comprised of a Punk, a Pixie and a Mod: fun, madness, the odd murdered ex-wife and home-made cupcakes are guaranteed!
Having launched their home-recorded, home-produced, home-made EP “Final Ride” at the Masons Arms in September, SDS hope to follow this up with an album later this year. Firm believers in the punk-DIY ethos, Shaggy Dog Story have begun hosting and promoting their own events across Doncaster. They wish to showcase the fantastic local original talent that South Yorkshire has to offer: as exemplified by the two fabulous support acts they are sharing a stage with.
So prove them right. Dress up to the nines, be a part of your local music scene and get yourself down to the Hallcross 1st February for the first night of live music since it re-opened late last year!!
Oh, and the best part?…It’s all absolutely free!
Rawmarsh ex-pit man turned poet Tony “Gooders” Goodwin hosts the second Pit Men Poets night in Mexborough on the 16th of January bringing together friends and poets from across the region. The night offers each poet the chance to stand up and recite one poem each and you don’t have to be a pit man to and take part.
This is definitely a one-of-a-kind night for the region and poems range in content from political, historical and even a few love poems.
Ray Hearne a Rotherham based poet was there on the debut night and played a ditty on his guitar called “On the Beach in Rotherham”, Joe Kriss a poet originally for London now based in Sheffield performed a poem about Tinsley Power Station. A young Rotherham lad of 17 performed a contemporary rap inspired by his travels in Austrailia, which went down a storm. Gav Robertson a Rotherham based wordsmith, who started Rotherham’s own acclaimed poetry night ROMP recited a lengthy but heart warming love poem.
This night is for anyone who has something to say, in the spirit of the old pit-men you need to have the courage to stand-up and recite something from the heart. You could even be an aspiring HipHop MC, an ex-miner with a few stories to tell, a Mexborough lass with fire in your belly with something to say about the world.
The next Pit Men Poets night will take place on Thursday 16th January at 8.00pm and will take place every 3rd Thursday at the Concertina Band Club in Mexborough. Entry is Free.
To find out more contact:
Tony Goodwin email@example.com