Stonedead Festival 2020 Preview

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Stonedead Festival 2020 Preview
‘The Monster Returns’
By Paul Monkhouse

After two years Stonedeaf Festival is no more. This isn’t due to any issues with the event at all but just purely a need to change the name due to a rival event. Announced during this year’s festival, it was revealed that the new name of this rapidly growing gathering of the cream of the rock scene would be Stonedead and they have certainly continued the trend for stunning line-ups as the reveal of the bands booked thus far has proven.

Once again, the ethos is very much a music festival run by music fans and recaptures the excitement and spirit of those early halcyon years of Monsters of Rock. In the two years since its inception, the event has grown from strength to strength and seems to have truly captured the hearts and imaginations of whole families and generations who just want to hear some of the best bands around in a friendly atmosphere that is well run, affordable and genuinely cares for the rock community that gathers there to worship at the stacks of Marshall Amps. With two hugely impressive festivals under their belts already the announcement of the artists booked so far for 2020 will push the excitement levels up to 11.

Black Star Riders
Headlining will be classic rock supergroup Black Star Riders and anyone who witnessed them on their latest tour will know that the band are firing on all cylinders and knocking every show out of the ballpark. Since forming in 2012 the band have certainly fulfilled their avowed intent to be the next stage in the evolution of Thin Lizzy and have very much grown their own identity whilst capturing the Celtic fire and spirit of the legendary Irish rockers. Helmed by Lizzy axeman Scott Gorham and former Almighty frontman Ricky Warwick, BSR are titans in the rock scene and the immense talent and charisma of these two hugely respected musicians has led them to new heights. Each album has continued to build the formidable machine and their lives shows have become the absolute epitome of what a visceral and exciting celebration of hard rock should be. One of the best bands in the world, Black Star Riders will blow you away.

https://www.facebook.com/BlackStarRidersOfficial/

Tyketto
Tyketto ripped up the rule book when they emerged and produced one of THE classic debut albums of all time in “Don’t Come Easy” and have genuinely never looked back. Formerly fronting Waysted, Danny Vaughn brought his incredible voice and writing talents to form the band with three like-minded New Yorkers and lead single ‘Forever Young’ broke through big time, enjoying constant rotation on MTV. Their rapidly soaring profile saw them opening shows for Bon Jovi and Whitesnake, often blowing the headliners off the stage with their own brand of street tough rock that had a gift of unassailable melody. Grunge put a dampener on things but the band regrouped and proved that you can’t keep quality down. Although the line-up has changed throughout the years, Vaughn has truly been the beating heart of these masters of their craft, his superb voice and stage presence never letting up. After such a stunning start it would be difficult for most bands to reach that high-water mark but Tyketto have produced album after album of immense tunes, fuelled by a craft and determination that Bon Jovi left behind years ago. Prepare to fall in love.

https://www.facebook.com/TykettoTheOfficial/

Kris Barras Band
‘Bruising’ is the perfect way to describe Kris Barras as this former MMA cage fighter has produced album after album of muscular blues rock with his self-titled band as well as fronting the supergroup Sonic Blues Machine alongside ZZ Tops Billy Gibbons. A man totally committed to his craft, Barras has toured relentlessly around Europe to growing audiences and each album has grown heavier and won more accolades than each previous release. A player of remarkable sensitivity and verve, he’s certainly caught the imagination of not only the general public but also blues purists who have hailed him as one of the finest guitarists on the scene. Latest album ‘Light It Up’ is a powerful testament to the importance of the blues as a genre while never holding back the punches and providing a crunching soundtrack that more than satisfies fans of rock too and his set at Stonedead should provide the highlight for many on the day.

https://www.facebook.com/krisbarrasband/

Blaze Bayley
Blaze Bayley is best known as front man for Tamworth rockers Wolfsbane and then as the man Iron Maiden handpicked to replace the departing Bruce Dickinson and latterly fronting his own titular band, constantly on the road and pouring blood, sweat and tears into every show. His appearance at Stonedead celebrates his time with Maiden so expect some classic tracks from ‘The X Factor’ and ‘Virtual XI’ albums along with a few other prime cuts. A magnetic performer, Bayley will be bringing his own brand of Midlands Metal that will doubtless thrill all those lovers of British steel.

https://www.facebook.com/officialblazebayley/

Tygers Of Pan Tang
Arguably better than ever, Tygers of Pan Tang are one of the most legendary bands of the NWOBHM and follow in the footsteps of Diamond Head this year as leaders and vanguards of the genre who have appeared at the festival. Featuring original guitarist Robb Weir, the band have seen themselves touring all through Europe and beyond to packed houses, rammed with people who appreciate the constantly high class of the writing and performances. From the seminal debut “Wild Cat” through to new album “Ritual” the band have always brought the perfect mix of melody and heaviness that has been their trademark since they emerged from the wilds of Whitley Bay in the North East and they certainly show no signs of slowing down.

https://www.facebook.com/tygersofpantangofficial/

Myke Gray feat Kim Jennett
You would have to been hiding under a rock to have not heard of the perfect pairing of former Jagged Edge, Skin and Red White & Blues guitarist Myke Gray with former Voodoo Blood frontwoman Kim Jennett, such are the seismic ripples these two have caused. One of the hardest working and highly thought of musicians in the country, Gray has played on some of the biggest stages in Europe and toured with giants of the rock scene, his skill as a writer and six stringer drawing plaudits from rock fans and peers alike. With her incredible blues rock voice and commanding stage presence, Jennett has met her perfect mentor in the guitarist and has grown immeasurably since they started working together in the Summer of 2018. With a well-received support tour with Black Star Riders and an absolutely incendiary show at Download this year under their belts the two have proven to be one of the genuine ‘must see’ acts on the live circuit and are destined to prove one of the truly legendary ‘’I was there…’’ sets in the history of Stonedead.

https://www.facebook.com/MykeGrayMusician/
https://www.facebook.com/kimjennettvocalist/

With the Special Guests and opening band slots yet to be announced it already looks that Stonedead 2020 will be one of the events of the year and at £50 arena entry or £60 arena and camping fee (cheaper for children) it’s an absolute bargain. The festival happens on 29th August 2020 at the Newark Showground and full details can be found at www.stonedeadfestival.co.uk. See you down the front!

 

FURTHER LINKS:


https://www.facebook.com/stonedeaffestival/
https://www.facebook.com/groups/237397456749576/

https://www.instagram.com/stonedead_fest/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCXF1P29FvLRXD_IqNhPNvA

 

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Disclaimer: This preview is solely the property of Paul Monkhouse and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this preview, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Stonedeaf Festival 2019 – Newark Showground, Nottinghamshire, UK – 24/08/2019

 

A full review of this festival can be found here:

https://ever-metal.com/2019/08/30/stonedeaf-festival-2019-newark-showground-nottinghamshire-uk-24-08-2019/

 

ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF SIMON DUNKERLEY of SD Photography.
https://sd-photo.smugmug.com/
https://www.facebook.com/SD_Photography-308971442474820/
https://twitter.com/simond11

 

Stonedeaf Festival 2019 – Newark Showground, Nottinghamshire, UK – 24/08/2019

00 Stonedeaf Festival

Stonedeaf Festival 2019
Newark Showground, Nottinghamshire, UK
24/08/2019
Review by Paul Monkhouse

Welcome to your new favourite festival. It’s quite a bold opening statement but from the moment you step on site things are different. This truly is a festival that is all about the love of the music and the community of rock and metal fans joining together in celebration. The fact that this is only the second year and the numbers have swollen so much is testament to this. Here everyone is family.

Samarkind
Dublin based four-piece Samarkind kicked off the day in fine style, their bluesy hard rock fitting perfectly in with the sunshine vibe of the festival. Like a tougher version of Bad Company, they dripped cool in a set that showed just why there is such a tradition of great music from the Emerald Isles. Absolute stormers like ‘Fire and Blood’ and ‘Blue Mountain’ just scream quality and when the former slips in a snatch of ‘Heaven and Hell’ you just realise how natural these guys are. They work incredibly hard at what they do but it all pays off in no uncertain terms, making you wonder how anyone can follow such a performance.

01 Samarkindhttps://www.facebook.com/samarkindband/

Massive
Feral street fighting Aussie brawlers Massive followed and showed how their constant touring and never stop until you’ve given 110% attitude has won over a growing legion of fans this side of the World. There truly must be something in the water that produces such tough rock and roll bands and these guys are more akin to the incendiary Rose Tattoo than Angus and Co, glorying in the rougher edge of all out gonzo tracks like opener ‘Generation Riot’. Guaranteed to wake you up, the band ripped through a set that absolutely nailed it every time and the cover of ‘If You Want Blood (You’ve Got It)’ slot perfectly in as a nice tip of the hat to their fellow countrymen. It should be pointed out that they aren’t a one note band but there’s some great songwriting with light and shade as the brilliant ‘Ghost’ proved. Set closer ‘Long Time Coming’ brought back the fire and as lead singer Brad Marr drained a can of beer and poured the last few drops over his head you just knew that you’d witnessed a band giving their all for the crowd.

02 Massivehttps://www.facebook.com/MassiveOz/

The Amorettes
Next up were The Amorettes and it was the turn for the girls to show that they can rock just as hard as the boys with a positively red-hot set that matched the rising temperature of the day. This new version of the group featuring original singer / guitarist Gill Montgomery, Tequila Mockingbird’s Jacinta Jaye and Josie O’Toole and second guitarist Laurie Buchanan (Aaron Buchanan and the Cult Classics) are truly firing on all cylinders. Despite one or two technical issues they powered through a set packed with great songs, melody and a snotty bubblegum rock attitude. Numbers like the pounding ‘Coming Up the Middle’ and the ridiculously catchy ‘Everything I Learned (I Learned from Rock and Roll)’ ensured that The Amorettes continue their upwards trajectory and may well be headlining festivals like this one in the future.

03 The Amoretteshttps://www.facebook.com/theamorettes/

Diamond Head
Very few bands can be genuinely be called ‘legendary’ but Diamond Head are rightly part of that club, founding member Brian Tatler proudly steering the band ever forward with a cracking new album in ‘The Coffin Train’ and not just happy to rest on his laurels, feeding off the past. New numbers like ‘Death by Design’, ‘Belly of the Beast’ and ‘The Messenger’ pepper the set, showing the confidence the band have with the latest material and it’s well placed. Of course, most people are waiting to hear the classics and they certainly weren’t disappointed as ‘Borrowed Time’, ‘Lightning to the Nations’, ‘In the Heat of the Night’ and ‘It’s Electric’ were greeted like old friends, this incarnation of the band brilliantly injecting new life into songs written almost forty years ago. Rasmus Bom Anderson has both the voice and stage presence to make you forget that anyone else originally sung these songs and Tatler spends the set smiling, obviously loving playing the songs whose strength brought bands like Metallica and Megadeth into being. When a World War II Dakota flew in the skies over the stage during ‘Am I Evil?’ this mix of the sight and sound of two spine tingling classics was one of the outstanding moments of the day and was one of those moments long to be remembered.

04 Diamond Headhttps://www.facebook.com/DiamondHeadOfficial/

Geoff Tate
Bringing his ‘Operation Mindcrime’ show to Stonedeaf, former Queensryche front man Geoff Tate stole the show for a lot of people as he put on a peerless show, featuring some of the greatest tracks cherry-picked from his time with the Washington rockers. The time flew by from the moment that the first notes of ‘Empire’ rang out to the final seconds of ‘Eyes of a Stranger’, each song perfectly played and a testament to just how seminal the bands output was at this time. Tate seemed relaxed and happy, a tight group of musicians behind him, his voice better than ever and bringing out every nuance in the lyrics, powerful, moving and out and out jaw-dropping. Metal to stimulate your intellect as much as your eardrums, ‘Operation Mindcrime’, ‘Jet City Woman’ and an incredible rendition of ‘Silent Lucidity’ that was arguably the highlight of the whole day, all transported the audience to their own euphoric state where the only choice was to give themselves over totally to the music. Geoff Tate was utterly thrilling and untouchable.

05 Geoff Tatehttps://www.facebook.com/GeoffTateOfficial/

Wayward Sons
Following almost constant touring, barring a break to record their new album, the Toby Jepson fronted Wayward Sons are quickly engendering as much love and respect as his previous outfit, Little Angels. Whilst the Scarborough outfit saw their youthful hard rock take them from Yorkshire pubs to the stage of the Royal Albert Hall, Wayward Sons channel more of a spirit of classic rock and new wave bands into an instantly likeable mix that has the energy and fire of The Who and The Clash but adds some extra weight into the mix. Always a very good songwriter, Jepson has matured into a great one and the material the band have now is some of the very strongest he’s put his name too. Blistering opener ‘Alive’ hits like a prize fighter and for the whole of the eleven-song set you can hear more and more converts being made in the crowd, Jepson the consummate front man welcoming each and every one into the Wayward Sons family. Aside from their rollicking good tunes, the key ingredient in the success of the band is the feeling that the musicians themselves are having as enjoyable a time as the audience, like Massive before them they work hard but obviously love what they are doing.
Guitarist Sam Wood and bass player Nic Wastell made the most of the stage, throwing shapes and along with Jepson, drummer Phil Martini and keys players Dave Kemp exuded effortless cool, slamming into numbers like the debut album title track ‘Ghosts of Yet to Come’ and new anthem ‘Any Other Way’. ‘Crush’ featured a snippet of the Stranglers ‘No More Heroes’ and showed that the band are proud of their influences whilst another new song ‘Little White Lies’ had a real feel of The Beatles and ELO in it’s perfect grandeur. By the time that ‘Jokes on You’, ‘Something Wrong’ and ‘Until the End’ had finished the set, despite sound issues, the band had conquered Stonedeaf and are definitely set to be future headliners.

06 Wayward Sonshttps://www.facebook.com/waywardsonsbanduk/

Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons
Absolutely the only way to follow them was with the visceral thrill of Phil Campbell and the Bastard Sons, the long serving guitarist from the legendary Motörhead and his band truly ripping the place apart. They are without doubt the real deal and Campbell’s years with Lemmy let him shine and develop into one of the most astute musicians on the scene, never overplaying but happy to step back and make the band and the music more important than the individuals. More than any other group on the day, they captured the dangerous spirit of rock and roll, walking the fine line between euphoria, recklessness and perfect control, Campbell cool with his gold plated Gibson Flying V glinting in the sunlight whilst his three sons Todd, Tyler and Dane wreaked havoc as vocalist Neil Starr’s powerhouse voice brings everything home.

It really is a testament to the band when self-penned tracks like ‘Big Mouth’, ‘Step into the Fire’ and ‘Straight Up’ make as much of an impression as Motörhead classics like ‘Rock Out’, ‘Born to Raise Hell’ and ‘R.A.M.O.N.E.S.’. Hawkwind cover ‘Silver Machine’ was a brilliant touch but it was the almost inevitable ‘Ace of Spades’ that switched the crowd into a seething mass of flying hair, lunatic dancing and mass singing. Final number ‘High Rule’ could have proven an anti-climax after that but once again showed the band to be very much their own men and a totally formidable rock machine that absolutely took no prisoners. If you’re not for them, prepare to get crushed under their wheels.

07 Phil Campbell and the Bastartd Sonshttps://www.facebook.com/PhilCampbellATBS/

Inglorious
The placing of Inglorious in the special guest slot was always a bit controversial, playing after such established artists, but the up and coming classic hard rockers rose to the challenge and won over the crowd by sheer force of personality and craftsmanship. A seismic change in line-up could have shattered the band but by sheer force of will main man Nathan James brought the band through this and they came out fighting even harder; leaner, meaner and determined to defy the odds. Opening number ‘Where Are You Now’ could have been directed to the departed members of the band as a bitter riposte but was instead a monstrous slab of hard rock, full of drama and melody.

Three albums into a career, you can’t help but wonder just how huge the band is going to get as they launch into anthemic number after anthemic number, each one perfectly suited for filling stadiums. Sure, the riff in ‘High Flying Gypsy’ owes a huge debt to ‘Kashmir’ but if you’re going to have influences make them the very best you can and ‘Read All About It’ is hard rock with a real groove and edge that most bands would give their right arms for. One thing that James shouldn’t do though is to trade in the six string wonder that is Danny Dela Cruz, considering he is only just out of his teens (having just celebrated his birthday a few days previously) the guitarist is very much a future axe hero and one to watch. Long-time drummer Phil Beaver, guitarist Dan Stevens and perfectly quiffed bassist Vinnie Colla all play their part though, making their own individual mark and certainly not being pushed into the role of sidemen. A magnificent and unexpected cover of Alanis Morrisette’s towering ‘Uninvited’ caused goosebumps but it was the punishing ‘Ride to Nowhere’ and mass singalong of ‘Holy Water’ that left the most lasting impressions, showing that the future is really what they want to make of it.

08 Inglorioushttps://www.facebook.com/weareinglorious/

Glenn Hughes
Anyone who has ever seen Glenn Hughes live will know exactly why the K.L.F. dubbed him ‘The Voice of Rock’ when they featured him on their track ‘America: What Time is Love’. The man is a giant in an industry that seldom sees talent as anything but disposable, a survivor of a decade or so of excess that would have finished off most people and someone who has never been prepared to just accept second best, always pushing forward and stretching himself. An astounding singer, brilliant bass player and songwriter, there couldn’t have been a better choice to finish of the night and his current set that focuses on Deep Purple classics. The opening salvo of ‘Stormbringer’ and ‘Might Just Take Your Life’ were thrilling and made everyone forget the technical issues that extended the wait for Hughes coming on stage in an instant and ‘You Keep on Moving’ was so scorching that it threatened to turn the already dry field into a tinderbox. Ever appreciative of those who come to see him, the singer was a true professional, talking to the audience and singing A cappella through a set plagued by equipment problems, totally free of superstar tantrums and just wanting to get on with entertaining the people. ‘Mistreated’ couldn’t have been much bigger and the pairing of DP Mk II staple ‘Smoke on the Water’ with a beautiful and heartfelt ‘Georgia on My Mind’ was an unexpected but literally show-stopping end to the main set. Whilst neither song was penned by Hughes, he very much made them both his own and the playing of guitarist Soran Anderson, keyboard player Jesper Bo Hansen and the utterly phenomenal drumming of Ash Sheenan complemented every note. For the encores, the adrenalin rush of ‘Burn’ never fails to thrill and ‘Highway Star’ closed the festival in utter triumph: a definitive classic by one of the greatest bands in rock history, sung by a true giant of the genre. Quite how the organisers will top things next year who knows, but one thing’s for certain, they’ll certainly try. Due to copyright issues the festival is having to change its name so whilst Stonedeaf may have lasted two brief but beautiful years, Stonedead will continue to grow and grow. Rock will never die.

09 Glenn Hugheshttps://www.facebook.com/glennhughesonline/

ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF SIMON DUNKERLEY
https://sd-photo.smugmug.com/
https://www.facebook.com/SD_Photography-308971442474820/
https://twitter.com/simond11

FESTIVAL LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/237397456749576/

https://www.instagram.com/stonedeaf_festival/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCXF1P29FvLRXD_IqNhPNvA

 

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Monkhouse and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

‘Stonedeaf Festival – Looking back and moving forward’.

Stonedeaf Logo (TOP)

‘Stonedeaf Festival – Looking back and moving forward’.
By Paul Monkhouse

It’s still Summer (despite the weather) so it’s still festival season. We have had Download and Bloodstock, Ramblin’ Man and Steelhouse amongst others are on the horizon but there are many superb smaller ones definitely worth checking out. In amongst those is one that mixes a heady nostalgia for the greatest annual rock festival of the 80’s and 90’s, an event put on by rock fans, for rock fans I give you: Stonedeaf Festival, happening on the 24th of August.

Despite only having its inaugural festival in 2018, this has become a much-anticipated fixture in the rock and metal calendar and one that has upped the ante even more from last year’s impressive debut. Put together by a collection of veteran fans of the legendary Monsters of Rock festival, this packs into one day and one stage more quality than most festivals do in a weekend (and more than Reading Festival has in the last ten years). The idea was to appeal to not only the people who used to go to MoR but anyone who loves classic hard rock music and doesn’t want to spend several days trudging from one stage to another on a massive site with overpriced food and drink. At Stonedeaf the order of the day is to make things as relaxed and easy as possible so people can get on with just enjoying several hours of fantastic music. Camping is an option and, unlike Download, you can pitch your tent within a very short walk of the arena which is a huge bonus and means you don’t have to miss any of the action. The same can be said of the one stage set-up, totally avoiding all those awkward clashes of timetabling.

Headlining this year is THE Voice of Rock, Mr Glenn Hughes who will be bringing his Classic Deep Purple live set to the venue. It can’t be overstated just how incredible this man is, not only for the voice and his phenomenal bass playing but also for being one of the true survivors of the business. The current set lets him really dig deep into his time in the legendary hard rockers but also breathes life into material that is over forty years old but rocks just as hard as it ever has, mixed with his soul and funk edge. This promises to be a must-see performance.

Not only do you get one of the greatest performers on the planet but also a stellar supporting cast featuring some of the cream of the scene. Rising superstars Inglorious bring their heady modern take on classic rock and in frontman Nathan James have a man whose voice and presence can command any audience. If you like your rock harder and dirtier, long-time Motörhead guitarist Phil Campbell brings his Bastard Sons to Stonedeaf and will be playing not only selections from their own hugely acclaimed material but also throw in a song or two from the late, great Lemmy’s troupe too. Having gone down a storm to a packed tent at Download last year, constantly toured the UK with some of the best bands around and on the cusp of releasing their second album, the ex Little Angel Toby Jepson fronted Wayward Sons have got class and material to match that most groups would give their whole careers for.

The unique voice and vision of Geoff Tate is also appearing, doubtless showing just why Queensryche became so huge and true Legends of the NWOBHM, Diamond Head play too. It really cannot be overstated just how important DH are to the modern music scene and without them neither Metallica nor any of the other Big 4 would likely exist. Scotland’s brilliant The Amorettes will doubtless bring some Celtic fire to the proceedings and the bill is rounded off with the visceral rock ‘n’ roll of Australia’s Massive and the bluesy hard rockers Samarkind opening the show. With Krusher Joule MC’ing the whole event and tickets only £50 (£60 for camping) it’s a total no brainer.

Full details at https://www.stonedeaffestival.co.uk/

Stonedeaf Festival 2019 Poster (BOTTOM)

 

Disclaimer: This preview is solely the property of Paul Monkhouse and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this preview, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.