Yet another belated Through The Lens feature as I slowly work through my backlog of gigs I’ve shot over the last few months and another night where I bumped into fellow Shamanite Reza Mills.
With it being a Saturday in Manchester, The Ritz doubles as a nightclub, so it was a 6.30pm start with a 10pm curfew, and as I don’t live too far away, I thought I set off in plenty of time. How wrong could I be as the corrupt Tories were holding their (unwelcomed) annual conference in our beautiful city, meaning some roads were closed, traffic was horrendous, and my usual parking spot was cordoned off. Damn!
On to Plan B, I eventually got parked, ran over to the venue, got my photo pass (thanks Chris!), and although I’d missed the fifteen-minute rule in the photo pit, the security let me in, which I have to say was good of them as its a rarity in this day and age, so credit where credit is due.
As for Bonnacons Of Doom, the last half of their set I caught was simply spellbinding with the mirrored masked musicians following the lead of ceremonial vocalist Kate Smith as they filled the airwaves with their psych and kraut rock sonics. Lambrini Girls were up next, a new band to me, and they ploughed their way through Riot Grrrl inspired punk rawk with guitarist/vocalist Phoebe Lunny spending more time playing in the crowd than on the actual stage.
Then it was time for the main course Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs, aka Pigs x7. I remember when they started making a noise a few years back in the small, but passionate doom, stoner and psych underground so it was a surprise to see them playing The Ritz as, in my mind anyway, I thought they would play smaller clubs while headlining a UK tour. How wrong could I have been as when the Newcastle deviants took to the stage, the 1500-capacity venue quickly filled up and I kept asking myself, when did they become so popular?
Not that I’m complaining as it was great to see them take complete command of the excitable crowd as the band locked in to deliver a blistering set of older and newer cuts from their latest Rocket Recordings album Land Of Sleeper. And you can understand why vocalist Matthew Baty wears a Stone Cold Steve Austin vest and Muay Thai shorts as the way he struts, runs and jumps around the stage demanding your attention is a workout in itself and left me exhausted just watching him.
Now check out the photos from the awesome night below…
Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs
Bonnacons Of Doom
Photos by: Lee Edwards