Thursday, 23 December 2010

The Big Ass Hebden Bridge Christmas Concert Review

On Sunday 19th December, despite the cold, the Trades Club in Hebden Bridge supported a large turnout for the ‘Big Ass Hebden Bridge Christmas Concert 2010’. Organised by Patrick McCallion and Billy Painter, the evening was a fundraising event for the Laura Crane Youth Cancer Trust.

The night was kicked off by ‘One Stop Railway’, a new band from Huddersfield and first-timers to Hebden Bridge. Wearing Santa hats, they covered popular favourites like Bloc Party’s ‘Banquet’ and Arctic Monkey’s ‘I bet that you’d look good on the dance floor’. A very energetic band , their set was thoroughly enjoyed by the crowd, leaving everyone ready for more musical talent.

Next up were ‘Frontier Psychiatrists’ who opened with a festive song called ‘The Frontier Psychiatrists are very jolly at Christmastime’. Featuring heavily distorted guitar and quirky vocals, the Frontier Psychiatrists were an epic presence onstage, with lead vocals Freddy Vinehill-Cliffe even leaping off the stage to join in with the dancing crowd partway through the set. After their performance, Freddy said “It’s been really fun, we’re really appreciative there was such a good turnout.”

Following them were the local favourites ‘Fishing For Bishops’. Described as ‘a heady mix of Zorbic Ska and Foot-Stomping Klezmer’, Fishing for Bishops were truly spectacular to watch and listen to. One by one, the band members took to the stage and took up the starting tune with their instruments. This included a four piece brass section (with trumpets, saxophone and trombone) a harmonica and a accordion. The band are well known for involving the audience in their gigs, and this time was no exception. Call and response melodies went down particularly well, as did the jumping along with the drums - which literally had the Trades Club shaking! It was Fishing For Bishops’ second time at the Trades Club, and they brought several new songs with them, as well as old favourites. A cover of “Call Me Home” - originally performed by ‘the Cat Empire’, (one of the many bands which have inspired Fishing For Bishops) - was a new addition to their repertoire. Isaac Rose (left) said “It’s just been really good to get the whole of the band together and do a gig for charity” As always, Fishing For Bishops were absolutely fantastic, getting the whole crowd dancing along and joining in. The band has both a Facebook and a MySpace page, and do many gigs in and around the Calderdale area, so they’re well worth checking out.

Rounding the evening off was a set by Patrick McCallion’s band “Small Words”. They did covers of several very famous songs, from  MGMT’s ‘Kids’ to ‘Don’t Stop Believing’, a favourite from Glee. One of the real highlights of the night was Patrick’s own song “Fresh in my Mind” (available on iTunes and a total must-listen) which was a huge hit with all the audience. Patrick also played solo for one of his songs, he really was an exceptionally strong performer. Small Words finished with a rendition of ‘God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen’ but with a Rock style twist, a suitable finish to a very well received and much enjoyed evening.

Thank you’s go to Patrick McCallion and Billy Painter for organising the night, the Trades Club, all the Band members for their fantastic performances, and the crowd for braving the winter weather to come down and watch the event. A fantastic evening!

Joe Cotton

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