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Dingwalls, Camden, London 12 February 2009
After spending 2008 writing songs for their second album and touring with
AC/DC, Irish classic rock rising stars The Answer were greeted by a packed
crowd on their brief return to an English stage.
The band are all skilled players but it is singer Cormac Neeson who
provides the focal point with his wild mane, hair to match and intense,
hyperactive stage manner. Fortunately this is also accompanied by a
touching modesty and self-deprecation between songs.
Unashamedly this gig was a showcase for their upcoming 'Everyday Demons'
album, interspersed with some of the first album classics, the Zeppelin-esque
Never Too late and Come Follow Me, mixing a massive riff with an equally
As for the new material, their previous late 60's/early 70's blues rock
influences seemed to have evolved into a slightly more straight ahead rock
style, with AC/DC and Black Crowes influences to the fore.
Everyday Demons, Tonight and On and On were among songs that impressed, while
Cry Out was more a throwback to their earlier style with a Free meets Humble Pie
vibe and Comfort Zone had Eastern influences that almost called to mind Kula
However on first listen many of the new songs lacked instantly memorable hooks -
time will tell whether they will grow on me with repeated listening, or whether
The Answer become one of those bands like Thunder who despite quality
follow-ups, found that it was the debut album songs that always remained fan
They closed the main set with Preachin', Cormac diving into the crowd
while Paul Mahon produced wave upon wave of the best slide guitar since
Micky Moody graced a stage with Whitesnake, and a 75 minute set ended with
three encores, including High Water or Hell, perhaps the best of the new
songs aired, and the classic Under the Sky which led to something of a
mosh pit at the front.
Despite my unfamiliarity with the new material it was a good night, and a
privilege to see them at a small venue as they progress to bigger things.
Review by Andy Nathan
Photos by Noel Buckley
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