Words: Stefan Putwain
Pics (C) Kailas Trebuchet © 2021 www.kailas.co.uk
What a difference a week makes! After the perfect autumn day last week, the heavens opened this week and a saturated multitude arrived at The Globe, in the Welsh capital city. However, undeterred by the weather, the venue was packed out expectantly for the opening act, Tony Wright.
The Terrorvision frontman, now sporting a splendid moustache, treated us to his wit and wisdom growing up in Yorkshire, with an acoustic set accompanied by Milly Evans on guitar. ‘Shit ‘ot’ was the response to the crowd warming to the warm-up act. The songs themselves providing an outlet for for Mr. Wright to explore his own anti-produced set and a stripped-down sound. The songs were interspersed with tales of under-age drinking and responsible bar tenders, complicated affairs of the heart ‘Jeanette/Janine’ and a Terrorvision classic in ‘Alice What’s The Matter?’.
There is nowhere for the artists to hide when there are only two guitars and the occasional kick of a simulated bass drum. These were songs from the heart and the guys definitely warmed the spirits of the damp Cardiff crowd. It is clear that this particular vehicle is a world away from his Terrorvision moments, but Tony has lost none of his swagger and loves to perform. In a near faultless display, they won over several new fans who knowingly appreciated, good honest endeavour. (9 out of 10)
The throng suitably lubricated on over-priced alcohol and treated to Black Laces’ ‘Hokey Cokey’ in the break, before Ferocious Dog took to the stage, you could sense that we were going to be greatly entertained by their set. I was warned that a middle-aged mosh pit was a dangerous thing to be involved in, but it actually turned out to be one of the most civilised I have ever seen.
Each song from the set was an impassioned tribute to the down-trodden and forgotten members of society, ‘Victims’, ‘Poor, Angry and Young’ and ‘Born Under Punches’, abandoned soldiers recovering from the effects of mindless wars ‘Broken Soldier’ to battles with mental health, ‘The Hope’. A superb tribute to the tireless efforts of the ‘Sea Shepherd’ and welcome donations to the local food bank make Ferocious Dog a band of the people. It should be no surprise that they were the first independent band in 35 years to sell out their home town venue, Nottingham Rock City, and judging by the following from the drenched masses, they were worth the sacrifice on a particularly inclement Thursday in October.
The music itself was a privilege to behold, the drummer Alex Smith, pounding out his rhythms on the toms ably backed by John Alexander on bass. With Ryan Brooks and Ken Bonsall on guitars and Dan Booth on the violin, providing the meat and bones to the band. Multi-instrumentalist Sam Wood, changing instruments seamlessly from mandolin to banjo to guitar to accordion and back again between each song. Mr. Wood is one of those amazingly talented individuals that can infuriatingly play almost any instrument put before him. Mr. Booth, although suffering a technical hitch toward the end of the set, played some exquisite melodic riffs on his violin. They set the tone for many of the uplifting tracks, like opener ‘Haul Away Joe’, encouraging the crowd to get down and boogie.
The working-class Celtic folk-punk that these gentlemen play is great mix and they can easily be talked about in the same breath as New Model Army and The Levellers. Supporting the new album, ‘The Hope’, I can only see that this bands’ popularity will grow and I defy anyone not to enjoy a Ferocious Dog concert. Everyone I saw was beaming from ear-to-ear at the end. (10 out of 10)
The tour continues throughout November