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VIBES FROM THE VINES, Horam, East Sussex
festival, in aid of Cancer Research, may have been in the middle of
nowhere but was well attended and equally well organised. A couple of the
more established bands from the last one were invited back and there was
the usual mix of local talent too.
Kicking off at midday, South Of Saturn, On The Spot and
Panther Child all mixed guitar pop with punk, rock and metal in an
energetic fashion. And while bands in this style are more of a plague than
just a trend right now, you couldn't fault the passion and energy. The
then sparse crowd took some interest but seemed more interested in
enjoying the burgers, beer and blistering sun.
Next up was Grace Ashton, who did have a top voice for a 16 year
old, and Storm Engine.
the daylight hours was definitely Karnataka, who verge on the
Celtic side of prog rock. The band were stars of the previous event 3
years ago, and songs from their forthcoming (as yet untitled) album really
stood out, the now swelling crowd really seem to enjoy it all.
mix went a little awry, with the bass up and vocals low, but the keyboards
and guitars sounded fantastic. Singer Lisa Fury danced away, sounding a
little like a sultry Bonnie Tyler, and the bass lines good too. Got to
spend time with this band backstage, with pianist Gonzalo providing a few
Strange then to follow them with Pearly Cubes, a covers band.
Talented and solid they were, but nothing too special, the versions coming
over a little homogenous.
Chris Difford and Matt Deighton were more acoustic,
something that would work better in more intimate surroundings but
provided a few decent tunes.
highlight was the Ray Russell Band, centred round vocalist /
guitarist Ray Russell and bassist Mo Foster (two session musicians who
have played on more records than you'd care to count). The rock often
veered off in a fusion direction, some hard rhythms and jazzy keyboards
filling the sound, but Russell's guitar work was fast, furious and
sublime. Foster proved why he's one of the most revered bassists around.
The Colours were more electronic but fun and flowing. By now the
sun was setting and the crowd getting into the swing of things.
Star of the show and early headliner was Gary Moore, who played
with Ray Russell's band. While his mood was sour (he looked miserable and
swore at one of the cameramen too), his guitar playing was as good as
ever. 'Oh Pretty Woman' and 'Parisienne Walkways' came over really well,
the crowd loving it. Russell joined the stage for some jamming, which
ended up like shred duelling.
Intraverse and Dakota closed the proceedings, with most feeling they got
their money's worth, and for a good cause too.
Review and photos by Joe Geesin
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