A pretty full-on opening set from THE OXIDES may have explained why one-man voice and guitar machine Jake Bolt seemed to forget where he was near the end of it at the last Ironworks Summer Showcase.
“We have been the 28 Jacks ...” he said, getting ready to introduce last song Going Overboard.
Till bassist Archie Stewart piped up quietly: “I thought we were The Oxides?”
Gig tension does that to a bloke, throws you back into the old routine of a former line-up.
But there is nothing old about the sound of the all-action, lean, mean fighting machine that is three-piece The Oxides.
And if Wake Me Up In Summertime is drummer Graham “Duff” Duff’s favourite song, he’s got good reasons – it might be mine too.
But it was hard to pick a favourite from the now signature take-no-prisoners set from rockers TOBY MICHAELS ROLLING DAMNED.
What with guitarist Jonny Ga$h voguing about all over the place just begging to be immortalised on film in some ultimate rock god poses, Toby still keeps his place as centre of attention, thanks to the powerful rocker’s voice, beard, moves – oh, just about everything!
There was no let up in the rampaging-through-the-crowd routine that proved so popular at the band’s Belladrum set.
Though with each passing gig, the rest of the band – including “the Dreamboat” Gary Thain with his own ironic posse of fans – are relishing the chance to go with the flow.
Angsty anthem Save Me, balled I Miss You and rabble-rouser A Little Bit Of What You Fancy all competed for best in set.
But love-in of the night came from ROADWAY and a crowd that were always going to treat this appearance as a particularly warm homecoming.
The two members of the band involved in a horrific car crash a few months ago are happily in their normal places in the line-up agai.
Bod Elder towers over one side of the stage on guitar, while lead guitarist Ross McEwen played like a man possessed, just resting on a stool with his cast still protecting his injured leg.
Though it’s a weird thing to say, the drama seems to have left the band with a fizzing new energy.
Tracks like opener Fight For Freedom got the crowd by the throat.
This Is Why was followed with a plea to support the Blood Transfusion Service from frontman Dougie Greig.
Pointing at the service’s T-shirts handed out by the band, Dougie said: “If it wasn’t for those people, these two wouldn’t be alive.”
One of them, Ross McEwen, added: “The service doesn’t have enough blood and, god forbid, you might need it one day.”
ROADWAY have already given the sweat and tears to get through the challenging last few months. MC