Archive for March, 2013

  • Moccasins
  • Escape the Ocean
  • The Fruit Group
  • Witchdoctor

So the third Friday Night Live at RokanRolla showed just how successful these evenings are becoming with a very busy venue.  So nice to see the local music scene thriving and people actually wanting to see live bands and why wouldn’t they when a gig is FREE!

First on lineup Witchdoctor.   A new band from Herne Bay consisting currently of 3 members due to the lost of their bass player, they describe themselves as psychedelic experimental progressive grungy jazzy punk rock shoegaze fusion.  Having recently had radio airplay which received a lot of very positive feedback, I was really looking forward to seeing these guys.  The sound of this band confuses me and I like that, it seems to confuse everyone but what did happen was, people talked about them after.  A number of bands names were thrown into the equation when I talked to people about their sound, The Kinks, The Hives, The White Stripes, Rush, Hawkwind, Black Sabbath and even Sitar.  This was only the bands second gig and considering that, they put on a fantastic set of covers and original material.  They are currently looking for a bass player and I would say that I agree with this to beef the sound up a little.  Overall though an exciting new band with a sound that I haven’t heard from any other.  Most definitely one to watch!



The Fruit Group next.  A 3 piece band from Herne Bay, signed to DOUBLE DECKORDS, who describe themselves as Jam Band/Tropical/VitaminC genre.  I hadn’t ever seen or heard this band before this gig so had no idea what to expect.  I have to say I half expected them to turn up in Bermuda shorts, Hawaiian t-shirts and have a set covered in inflatable bananas.  That might not have been to far from the truth!  The vocalist did wear a nice brightly coloured shirt, but that aside, the music that came off stage had a ‘sunny’ sort of sound to it.  Feel good music that made you think of tropical beaches and warm sunshine!  Very nicely put together set from a talented band.

The Fruit Group

The Fruit Group

Escape the Ocean are a Progressive/Math Rock band from Deal who do what they do extremely well.  Well I’ve reviewed these guys before so will put in the link here for that review.  It’s pointless to keep saying the same things about a band, so I wont go over old ground.  I have to be totally honest and say that I’m not hugely knowledgeable about this genre but its very easy to know when a band are more than a bit good!  The fact that a band member from Feed the Rhino was in the crowd to watch them kind of speaks volumes.  The guys put on a really good set but to be honest they always do, the standard never seems to drop, they never seem to have an ‘off day’.  The equipment they put on stage looks like something from the future, all shiny and high tech and always draws comment from people watching.  A band with more energy than a Tasmanian devil and a sound more technical than the ‘big bang theory’.  Get to a gig and see them!

Escape the Ocean

Escape the Ocean

Moccasins a 4 piece Indie Rock band from Folkestone, very local boys!  These guys are pretty young and have  a strong following of fans that turn up to their gigs.  They are a very tight band with a unique sound, favoring reverb which makes the sound produced very rich.  The songs are extremely catchy and the fans know them off by heart, cheerily singing them back to the stage.  However, even if this is your first time watching them, you find yourself singing along to choruses of certain songs.  This is rock indie that you can’t help but love.  Take their ages aside and you still have an incredibly talented group of musicians.  I think this band will be heard of by a lot more and spreading their wings a little in the future.



Witchdoctor – Arnald Find them on Facebook

The Fruit Group   Find them on Facebook 

Escape the Ocean – Exit Wound Find them on Facebook

Moccasins – Find them on Facebook 

Here follows a very small amount of photography from the evening.  For full gig photo’s please go to Facebook, this page only 



Brocker – A Quiet One 

‘A Quiet One’ by Brocker tells the story of hoping to have a quiet night in front of the TV but giving into temptation by your mates hassling you to go out on the beers.

The song starts with a rather long intro featuring lead guitar parts which eventually turn to palm muting and then we hear the vocals ‘It all starts with a little temptation’…

We are then treated to two and a half minutes of fast high adrenaline goodness with lyrics referring to whiskey and tequila fuelled nights out on the town.

The chorus is a catchy affair and you find yourself singing along to ‘It was gonna be a quiet one, I was only gonna have one pint’. The vocals are really powerful and suit the music perfectly.

Midway through the song we get to, in my opinion, the stand out feature of this particular track, the guitar solo. This solo is amazing, and makes your fingers ache just listening to it. It’s just so damn fast and fiddly that you almost find yourself wanting to air guitar instantly.

If you’re into bands such as Pennywise, Bad Religion or especially Strung Out then I can almost guarantee you will hold a soft spot for this monster of a track.

Dan Martin Brown

Punk/Pop Punk Reviewer on behalf of GIGgle Pics

Find band on Facebook – Give them a like

xup-sup 1

XUP-SUP  – Lonely Night

The hugely bouncy ‘Lonely Night’ follows the standard verse/chorus/verse/chorus/bridge/chorus structure that cannot fail in the pop/punk genre. This particular stomper tells the story of trying to occupy your Friday/Saturday nights without your significant other. The verse features the hugely popular na, na, na, na, nas made popular from bands like Blink 182, giving it a sing a long feature for the crowd to shout back. The lyrics are clever and witty, especially in the chorus when the song writing must have got a bit blank so they sing ‘Couldn’t think of a good third line, I search for you till the end of time’.  Instead of coming across as lazy this adds a bit of humour to the whole thing.

Musically the band sound extremely tight with a great thumping drum beat and creative rolls hammering throughout. The bridge goes all instrumental with a good bass line, building us up to the final chorus.

The chorus itself is a sing along affair with great back up harmonies that sounds great but sometimes gets a little lost behind the instruments.

The song reminds me of old school Blink 182 or MXPX especially with the vocal style which is certainly not a bad thing.

‘Lonely Night’ is a great sing-a-long number made possible by great musicians. Now I wonder if they have thought of that third line yet.  🙂

Dan Martin Brown

Punk/Pop Punk Reviewer on behalf of GIGgle Pics

Find them on Facebook – Go give them a like!  Support bands and let them know they are appreciated.



Ugly Love


Royal Tunbridge Wells is rarely described as trashy. I can’t imagine the Pantiles ever going without a weekly spruce up. Yet this lot who hail from the great place seem to be likely to call forth that possibility with the whole of their EP.

On initial hearing of “Oh no, Here come the space hawks” this reviewer feels like he’s stumbled into a punked up Arctic Monkeys recording session, based on the cleverness of vocalist Tom’s delivery.

Left me dwelling on how many “space hawks” I’ve met in my time (…probably too many…).

The opening fast rumbling bassline and its addictive punky riff brings to mind a mix of early Wildhearts and Wednesday 13.

This track even has the propensity to be a really sleazy crowd pleaser with the impressibly memorable chorus ,the obligatory “Whoa-oa”s and the intro and outro screams.

If this is trashy punk, you can keep your wheelie bins, I’m never recycling again.

Max Mann

Rock/Metal/Mixed reviewer on behalf of GIGgle Pics

Find band on Facebook 

Firstborn Heroes

Firstborn Heroes – Hold On Me 

With a swift 1,2,3,4, this song goes off like a rocket!

It tells the story of being messed about by the opposite sex (something we can probably all relate to at some stage of our lives) and being made to wait and hope.

The lyrics are fantastic with a real clever hook ‘You said soon enough, but soon enough’s not soon enough, You tell me to toughen up but I am just not tough enough’.

Musically the song has a real energetic vibe to it with a good old power chord structure played at rapid speed. Midway through and the solo shines through with panning used to great effect with the layered guitars harmonising from one ear to the next.

The sound Firstborn Heroes are creating here could probably be compared to a kind of Libertines/Green Day.  Cross over so fans of said bands will have no problem stomping their feet or singing along to the catchy hooks.

To sum it all up, it’s a great simple little track perfect for blasting out on summer days sinking beers.

Dan Martin Brown

Punk/Pop Punk reviewer on behalf of GIGgle Pics

Find band on Facebook 

First Born Heroes

Firstborn Heroes

Van Susans 02 Photography – Martin Hobby –


Ed Dullaway (Guitar + backing vocals) – Olly ‘Van’ Andrews (Lead vocals + guitar) – Holly McLatchie (Violin + backing vocals) – Rob Dullaway (Drums + percussion) – Will Showler (Bass + backing vocals)

Van Susans – Served Cold

So it would be easy for me to go into a lengthy description of the band, but this would be pointless.  A look at their extensive website will tell you all you need about this band and the guys as musicians.  They are extremely credible musicians with an impressive history as well, so I do suggest you go take a look.

What I will say is they are a 5 piece Pop Rock band from Bromley, signed to Beatnik Geek Records.  I’d say with a twist as well after photographing and reviewing one of their recent gigs (see here for review/photos).  They have recently released their debut album Paused In The Moment, which I have to say on a personal level I think is pretty awesome and on a regular playlist of mine. Other than that, the interview will do the talking!

Interview in Canterbury as part of tour on Saturday 23 March 2013 with Olly, Ed and Rob

Me:  So first off, obviously you are not from around here, so what are you doing in Canterbury?

Rob: What are we doing here?  Well it’s all part of our tour.  You saw us a few weeks ago at the Beercart Arms.  So basically when we set the gig up we were looking for as many things in the area to co-inside with it.  Touch wood the student radio station CSR may put on a radio show for us Sunday morning before the gig and we’re doing one again tonight, on the radio show again.  We done some live videos for Kent TV just now and then we’re gonna have a bit of fun later.

Me:  So having a look at Facebook, it looked like you was in the recording studio?

Olly:  Yeah

Rob:  We have our own, don’t we!

Ed:  Basically our old bassist is Tim, our little brother, mine and Robs and he’s a producer now, a very talented producer and we just decided to work with him.  Cos he’s just basically got it all set up in his room and I live just above him so that’s quite convenient.

Olly:  We’ve only just got it set up though, they just bought all the mics we need yesterday and got them all set up.  So we literally just started yesterday, so I  laid down some demo tracks from some new stuff that we got and we’re just going to get cracking with it.  He did actually produce our first single that we released, that was about 2 and a bit years ago now and obviously we got a lot of tricks on the way so hopefully he’s going to do a really good job with the new stuff.

 Me:  OK so you’ve obviously just released your debut album, how different did you find the recording process from doing an EP to an album?

Olly:  I think the EP was a lot more relaxed.  The album was a lot more stressful.

Ed:  Yeah cos we originally had a lot of very erm, we had deadlines that were very un-achievable.  Originally we were like, we’re going to get this whole album done in a month.

Olly:  (laughs) it was pretty much like that yeah…

Ed:  And then our producer just literally disappeared to America for like two months.

Olly:  Yeah and he didn’t tell us, I was literally just like, “When are we going to book in our session?” and he was like,”Yeah I cant do it for two months now”.  I was literally just like “What? Why”?  “Oh I’m going to America”.   “You, you didn’t tell me that” (laughs) “Whats wrong with you”?

Rob:  In some ways it was helpful.

Ed:  It was actually very beneficial.  Because we actually just ended up writing about 5 new tracks and we ended up just scrapping some of the tracks that were originally going to be on the album and put the new ones on.  It wasn’t that they were bad songs, its just we wrote better ones.  Like Fireworks, Served Cold, The Road, Rat Race, If I succeed.  It was like half the album.

Olly:  You have like a month where you just write loads of songs together, its weird  then you can go six months to a year of not writing any thing.  It just happened it was one of those periods when he went to America and the album did get better for that.  But we’d told the fans stupidly that it was going to be released on a certain day and we ended up pushing it back and pushing it back and we felt a lot of pressure by that, cos we did give a date.  I think it came out 6 months after we intended it to do which was a very stressful thing.

Me:  What was it like working with your producer

Olly:  He is a really good guy, really talented producer.  He’s works with Guy Chambers now who’s the guy who produces all of Robbie Williams stuff.  He added a lot to the album.  The only reason we are not going with him this time is because we want to keep it all in house, with them all being brothers we can spend a lot more time on the songs.  Because when your recording you add a lot more stuff to the song so having that time, we’ll have a lot more freedom with it.

Ed:  Because Tim has similar mentality about doing this kind of music and recording as us.

Rob:  Because he was in the band he knows how we sound.

Me:  So you’re working on another album now?

Ed:  Yeah we literally started working on it yesterday.

Olly:  We’re writing music and stuff, even before the album came out we literally had songs done.

Me:  So you’re going to do this one differently, sort of secretly recording your album and then announcing… (not a secret now of course!)

Olly:  Yeah well we’ve obviously learnt a lot from releasing our first album.

Me:  So there wont be a release date?

Olly:  No, we wont make that mistake again. (laughs)

Rob:  I think we’re gonna try and get a single out for the summer maybe?

Olly:  Yeah maybe, have to wait and see how that works.  We’re trying to get management, its the kind of thing we want to do, so we are going to record all these songs then send them out to management companies before sending it to radio.  We want to have someone else doing it all for us so we don’t get so stressed out.

Ed:  We’re currently a very independent band, doing everything.

Olly:  Its hard work when your trying to write music and you’ve got all this organisation stuff to do.  Sometimes you just want to sit down and write a song but you’ve got to do all the book keeping , finances, organizing the shows and all that stuff.  Having someone to do all that stuff would give us a bit more freedom.

Van Susans 03Martin Hobby –

Me:  Where do you get your inspiration from for your song writing? 

Olly:  The lyrics and music are two separate things I think.  When you write music you get inspired by something and it comes out as music, then add lyrics on top and it could be completely different, to the music.  We all write the music together.

Ed:  To you the lyrics is like real life.

Olly:  Yeah so the lyrics I write is always a reflection of something in real life, rather make up stories.

Me:  You’re signed to Beatnik Geek Records, how did that come about?

Olly:  Literally from day one we’ve been signed to them really.

Ed:  First gig.

Olly:  Keston Cobblers’ Club were signed to them the year before we were and I was a solo artist for a while at uni, was taking that quite seriously.  I dropped them an email as I knew Keston Cobblers’ Club were signed to them and they said they don’t really deal with solo artists but if you get a band together… I didn’t off the back of that think, oh I need to start a band, it just kind of happened that way, that we did start a band. Then 6 months later we sent them a demo and said “By the way, started a band now, if you want to come to this gig”.  It was like a 150 plus venue where people like play five aside football and invited all our friends and family down for that gig.

Ed:  It was a charity gig.

Olly:  Yeah it was a charity gig for cancer research and they came surprisingly, listened to our stuff and off the back off that arranged a meeting and signed us. From day one we just had their direction.  We kind of grew together because they were just starting, well they started a year before but now they’ve been running for like 3 years and we’ve got a good relationship.  They’re really good to us, get all our stuff on iTunes and Spotify and all that.

Me:  So obviously Beatnik Geek is an unusual name, do you ever get confused faces from new fans when they find out your name is Van Susans?

Rob:  Yep all the time, literally.  Everyone asks.

Ed:  For the first year I found it hard to even say… (tries to pronounce out v.a.n… s.u.s.a.n.s)

Olly:  Literally the first thing we was asked today when we walked into someones house was “Van Susans, why do you have that name?”  It’s like a really depressing story so straight away it drops the atmosphere.

Me:  It was a question I thought of asking but then realized you must get asked it all the time.

Rob:  I mean we can tell you what it means and then like a directors cut, you know, something a little more quirky as to what it means!

Olly:  I came up with the idea that we should have a band name after we had the songs.  So many bands make a name before they have songs and then it doesn’t fit.

Rob:  Yeah we literally had like 6 songs and was, erm we need a name because we need to make a Facebook and stuff.  We wanted it to mean something, I like it when a bands name means something.  Would you like to know why?

Me:  I am curious

Rob then explains the true story of how the band got its name and it is a very sad story.  I’m not going to bring the interview down with the story.  It’s widely documented in other online interviews so if you need to know, just give it a quick search.  Instead I’m going to give you the next “story” they gave me as to how they got their name!

Olly:  We was gonna go along with the principle of, I don’t know if you no but Biffy Clyro always make up stories about their name …

Me:  I think this is something you should do, sit down and concoct lots of different stories and then for every interview give a completely different one!

Ed:  (laughing) We keep saying we’re gonna do it!

Ben:  Well this is where we got the name Van Susans from:  There was this Colonel not the KFC Colonel (laughs) and his name, well no one knows his first name, but his surname is Vansusans and he traveled the world climbing mountains.  There was this huge forest fire and he saved pretty much the whole tribe, he was a marvelous human being.  What else did he do Olly?

Olly:  Well one of his party tricks was, when he was 91 he could do a back flip onto the table behind him.

Ben:  Ed what else did he do?

Ed:  Er well he was free runner.

Rob:  He was such an amazing personality and we think people should know who he is.  So that’s where we got the name from, the Van Susans.

Olly:  A free runner at 91?  (because that’s the hard bit to believe?) 

Ed:  Yeah

Me:  Ok I’d love to sit in on a song writing session because you guys have very strange minds… (everyone laughs)

Me:  So you guys are obviously touring at the moment, where are you touring, how many dates are you doing?

Olly:  We’re just kind of building on it really.  With the whole album being sort of messed up with promotion we didn’t manage to tour straight after it being released.  We’re just adding dates as we go really.  We want to get round to all the major city’s so we have Manchester booked up, we’re getting Leeds sorted out, playing Sheffield again, playing Southampton.  We’re going to Scotland next weekend to shoot the music video and playing Glasgow.  We’re doing our main London date on 26th April in a bar called The Rattlesnake which is in Angel.  We got another single from the current album coming out soon so maybe try and co-inside the release with that gig.  We like being on the road its good fun.

Me:  So when you’re travelling and all the late nights, how do you keep up with it? 

Rob:  It’s hard work. (laughs)  It is hard work, we just cope. (all laugh)  We do what we have to do.

Olly:  It’s quite cool… suppose I shouldn’t say it, oh I’ just gonna say it anyway.  We used to have a piano player in the band, he left about 6 months ago and he was a bit of a downer really.  Whenever we were playing gigs far away he’d  moan about it.

Ed:  The worst one was when going to and from France… it was the whole, oh its such a loooong drive.

Olly:  I dunno I just always enjoy it, I do enjoy it, its fun.  Cos there is only five of us now I think we’ve just got a really good attitude in the band and just have a laugh.  It’s just good fun.

Me:  How do you cope with spending so much time together?

Ed:  Well we’re not actually friends, we’re just business associates, solely in it for the money. (everyone erupts laughing)

Me:  That would be a really cool twist.

Rob:  Yeah we’re not gonna act like we care, (laughing) you know we’re honest.

Ed:  We have no feelings towards each other… (laughing)

Rob:  No!  We’re like best friends really.  A lot of people ask if Ed and I fight all the time as we’re brothers, but we don’t.

Ed:  We did when we was kids.  He used to scratch the hell out of me and punch me in the face.

Olly:  Good times!

Ed:  Yeah good brother. (laughing)

Rob:  But I was there when you needed me. (said in creepy voice)  No we do get along really well.

Olly:  We obviously argue.  People obviously see it as being in a band is light hearted and stuff but it actually is a lot of hard work. We get really stressed out, its like owning your own business I think.  As we have such a direct way of going about things, we like to keep everything in house so it can be very stressful.   When your working with each other all the time, seeing each other everyday, its quite an intimate way of living because you have to share your feelings with each other writing music and pouring your heart  out and stuff.   So you do clash every now and then, its going to naturally happen.

Ed:  It’s like having a long term relationship with like 5 people and its your lively hood.

Ben:  I think the worse part is when your touring on a budget we all just bundle into a double bed in a hotel room, I think that’s probably the worse part.

Ed:  yeah like jumping on the sofa, on the floor, sleeping in the bath.  We’ve had ones where we’ve been sleeping in the van, that was great.

Rob:  That’s actually usually quite fun, tell each other horror stories and blow up things.

Ed:  Yeah we’re really quite kiddie all of us.

Rob:  We can be a bit childish so its good fun.

The guys then proceed to tell me a very funny story around a festival they did but we agreed it needed to be edited out … although Rob thought it would make them sound a lot more rock and roll, I figured it may get them into trouble!  

Me:  So Holly being the only female in the band, does she keep you lot in line? 

Olly:  Erm she’s a bit of a lad though isn’t she?

Ed:  Yeah she’s a bit of a dude!  Erm she dresses like a girl obviously but she’s just got like a guys mentality.  Holly, she’s just really boisterous and stuff, she’s like us really.

Olly:  She’s just really easy to get on with.

Ed:  The only difference between us and Holly is she’s just a massive clean freak.

Olly:  She can be a bit of a diva sometimes but in a good way.

Ed:  Yeah we love her though, she’s great.

Me:  OK so last question.  Can you describe your sound in 3 words?

Rob:  Average, At, Best. (everyone laughs) Erm 3 words….

Me:  Yes, look you could have one each there!

There now ensues 3 minutes… yes 3, of deliberation, erms and ahs…  every question I’ve asked so far the guys they have come back immediately with an answer.  There has been points in this interview, they haven’t stopped talking and I’ve had to cut lots out as it ran with 28 minutes of audio instead of the intended 15.  Now this question has them completely stuck.  Lots of silly suggestion such as flowers etc are thrown in.

Olly:  Intricate… because it is quite intricate.

Rob:  Real – organic (fails to notice this it two) … in as much as that even in recordings we avoid as much as possible, anything that couldn’t be in a live performance.

Ed:  Oh now I need a word, oh great…

Olly:  I think we need some kind of actual genre in there, like funk maybe rock.

Ed:  Oh great so you’re just deciding my word for me huh?

Olly:  Yeah rock.

Rob:  Intricate, organic, rock…

Olly:  Erm that’s not very good is it? Shall we just say Gaelic, stadium, rock?

Me:  Wow you really struggled with that one, I’m glad I left that as the very last question.

Rob:  Stick with average, at, best.

Olly:  Yeah, average, at, best, sorted!

So we’re finished… nope they still not happy.

Olly:  Gaelic, stadium, rock if you want, I quite like that one.  People actually think I’m Irish because of the accent I sing with but I think I sing with my own accent.

Rob:  Best, band, ever.

Olly:  I like that, I like that.

Ed:  Just, about, bearable!

At which point I decided to put them all down and close the interview!

Sarah Quinn – GIGgle Pics

Olly - Ed - Rob

Olly – Ed – Rob

I have to say this was a really fun interview which I hope really comes across, if not merely by the numerous (laughs) throughout.  It’s very obvious that the guys really do love what they do and have a lot of fun in the process.  Unfortunately this interview had to be edited down due to its length and sometimes content (you would love to have heard those stories!).  However, they are such an approachable bunch that clearly have a lot of time for their fans, so I’m sure if you got to one of their gigs, some of those stories would be shared in person.  Check out their music, check out their Facebook and website and most of all check out one of their gigs!

Find them on Facebook

Official website

Beatnik Geek Records on Facebook

Official website

I would just like to thank the guys for not only fitting me into their tour schedule but also persisting with sorting.  After emails not going through, they went out of their way to twitter me Saturday morning and we hastily arranged for later that day!  Really appreciated guys and also to David at Beatnik Geek Records for helping to arrange in the first place.

Article and Photography by Sarah Quinn – GIGgle Pics (unless otherwise stated on photo’s)

Also playing an intimate gig at RokanRolla in Folkestone on Friday 3rd May (their Facebook event page) – GIGgle Pics will be reviewing and Photographing


Witchdoctor – Gull’s Cap

So let me get this out there straight away, this isn’t a supergroup made up of prog and metal legends. It’s an eight minute “psychedelic experimental progressive grungy jazzy punk rock shoegaze fusion”-type opus from three Herne Bay youngsters.

You could be forgiven for thinking the opening thirty seconds or so were the incidental sound effects from a 1970’s episode of Doctor Who (to the point I was expecting to hear the word “Exterminate!), although I’m sure even the parents of these lads would struggle to admit hearing that from Saturday evenings hidden behind the sofa.

However when the first guitar chord hits, conjured up images of Rush and Hawkwind sitting down together with a few packs of Skittles and working out how they could put together a cover of a Black Sabbath track, immediately spring to mind. Yet this is so much better than even that, and from a band that only formed in November 2012????

Multi-layered voices of singer George, who does have an Ozzy tinge to his voice on this track (that’s a good thing!!!) are just part of the immense production. All the guitar work and drumming are of superior quality and even the appearance of what I’m pretty sure is a sitar, add up to it being a darn epic from a trio of chaps whose combined age is probably just over half that of Ozzy’s himself.

Think of something you can do in eight minutes…….don’t do it…turn this up loud and clamp those headphones to your head!

Max Mann

Rock/Metal/General reviewer on behalf of GIGgle Pics

Have a listen for yourself then get over to their Facebook and show them some like love! (p.s don’t forget to share the video with others if you appreciated it, that’s what the local music scene is all about!)