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Sheffield Rocks - All That Promotions Local Unsigned Night (Live Review)

Tuesday, 24 August 2010 Written by Adam Simpson
Sheffield Rocks - All That Promotions Local Unsigned Night (Live Review)

Sheffield’s unsigned act night at the Walkabout Bar was definitely a hit, held on Sunday the 22nd August and organised by Natalie Beard, of All That Promotions, the event granted four local, unsigned acts a live set, something which can be difficult to arrange, when unsigned.

The night included four acts, Chloe-Jade Simmons, Tarka Dawn, Shamble Street and Jax Colon, a mixture of acoustic, indie and rock, played in an intimate venue, in front of a small, appreciative crowd.

Chloe-Jade Simmons, opened the night and what a revelation. The solo acoustic guitar player and vocalist blew me away with her vocal talent. For one performer, armed with only an acoustic guitar, she made one hell of a noise, warm guitar ballads and melodies, good, emotive lyrics and that voice. The Sheffield song bird has a huge vocal range and a real beauty to her voice. Her track Conflicted, is a super, catchy track which could almost be considered a pop song, such is the song’s upbeat nature and the ultra catchy chorus.

ImageChloe was absolutely brilliant, her voice created depth and range, warm enough to compete with any band and the beauty in her vocals and lyrics were jaw dropping.

Tarka Dawn were the next group to take to the stage. The alternative indie-rock five piece, were hugely entertaining and energetic on stage. The group’s drummer was exceptional, keeping a high tempo running throughout the set. The other musicians were no slouches either, the bass was warm and up front in the sound and both guitarists were very good indeed, with the lead guitarists, high pitch, screaming riffs a highlight. The group’s front man was very charismatic and hugely entertaining; his vocals were pretty good too. Both his range and depth of voice were huge and he accompanied the brilliant musicians perfectly.

Shamble Street were next up, a four piece indie group from Sheffield. Led by quick tempo drumming and deep plodding bass, the group played a very tight set, which was helped by the rhythmic playing of acoustic guitar and climbing riffs, from the lead guitarist. The music was melodic and filled with hooks throughout. The huge, swooping guitar solos were excellent and the use of effects pedals helped these solos fantastically. The only let down, was the vocals, although the lead singer had a huge range, they did lack the quality that the music commanded. That said, Shamble Street are still a good band that were very much entertaining and a pleasure to listen too. It is just a shame that the vocal quality of the group is off par with their musical talents.

Ending the show were Jax Colon. A five piece alternative indie-rock group. Musically, this group were outstanding, vocally they were pretty good. There sound was overall funky, upbeat and very well structured with the up and down nature of their songs adding depth and technical quality. The music from this group was very much a Manchester sound, although I do not think this was intentional, the bass was rich and up front, straight from the sound of Magazine, the funky rhythm guitar, straight from A Certain Ratio and the vocals were very Shaun Ryder. Backed up by the lead guitarists, screaming riffs, Jax Colon impressed hugely with their musical ability, I just wish the lead singers vocals, where as good as the music and would have liked a little more effort and stage presence from him. That said, they certainly impressed me.

Overall, this was a great night, four bands, which were all very good, with Jax Colon’s musical ability and Chloe-Jade Simmons, beautiful voice impressing hugely.

It was great to see local unsigned acts, been supported in this way and offered a way to get their music to the public’s ears. With a lot of depressing stories about the music industry right now and the opportunities for emerging talent seeming few and far between. To see events such as these supporting local acts, is definitely commendable and when groups put on a great show, as these acts did, it becomes a very worthwhile exercise.

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