Saturday 15th April – The Boileroom, Guildford

This gig may seem to be something of a take-two from the last gig I wrote about on this blog. The same venue, with two of the same acts and you’d be forgiven for thinking I’m short on ideas. Well, given the amount posts on this blog of late, you’d be correct. But that’s besides the point.

Saturday night was the return of Drug Store Romeos and Van Zeller to the Boileroom, kindly invited by our headliners for the night: Vinyl Staircase. The venue was absolutely heaving, with the up-and-coming Psych-Rockers playing a home crowd gig.

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Drug Store Romeos kicked the evening off on a resounding note. Once again, the trio dragged up a wall of chorus infused noise. The dreamy melodies soon drew in an initially uninterested crowd, who quickly took note that they were listening to more than just a warmup act. The group, who were also playing in front of a home crowd, are growing at an alarming rate considering that they’ve only been on the scene for the best part of 12 months. With a shy and pensive stage presence the three of them let their music do the talking, and when you can play like these three, you’ll have no problem drawing a following. I said this 5 months ago, and I’ll say it again; these guys have a bright future ahead of them in the Psych scene, and the only way they’re going is up.

Van Zeller, another relatively unknown commodity were next to take the stage, and guess what? They stole the show, as usual. For a band to arrest an audience who, in all honesty were not there to see them, with such ease is astonishing. But the catch is, they do this regularly. Their sheer energy and presence is the stuff of legends. If you had one word to describe Van Zeller, it would be loud, nothing else. They’re kicking garage punk back into the 21st century with unrivalled determination. Every performance brings in a host of new fans for this band, and the numerous sold out shows in their home town of Bristol, and their first headline tour concluding on the 29th of September at Thekla pay testament to this. If you haven’t gone out to see them yet, put them at the top of your list. Van Zeller are one of the best live acts around and you will not be disappointed.

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How do you follow on from an act like Van Zeller? Well, if you’re Vinyl Staircase, relatively easy apparently. People packed in at the front of the stage for the headliners, desperate to see a band which has been garnering so much attention recently. The two supporting acts, were very fitting actually, because Vinyl Staircase’s sound is very much the angsty lovechild Drug Store Romeos and Van Zeller: dreamy and psychedelic, but with all of the acerbic power of punk rock. With higher profile gigs behind them, and fresh off of BBC Introducing: the South, these four were a band with a little more ease behind their performance. They created a echoing wall noise and delivered whole-heartedly to an expectant crowd.

Saturday night provided yet another great gig, from a wonderful venue. Music nights at the Boileroom never disappoint, and at £3 you weren’t going to find a better gig anywhere in the country.

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Check out each of the bands’ Facebook pages here:

Drug Store Romeos, Van ZellerVinyl Staircase

You can buy tickets for Van Zeller’s headline tour later in the year here.

And make sure to check out Drug Store Romeos and Vinyl Staircase as they continue their tours over the coming weeks.

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