Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Unrivalled Sons

I had the distinct pleasure of seeing Rival Sons playing at Camden's Electric Ballroom on Monday night and still haven't come down from their thrilling and utterly flawless performance.

Rival Sons set the Electric Ballroom on fire!

The first indication that the stars were aligned for a vintage evening's entertainment came when support band, Ulysses, hit us with a set of equal parts stomp, glitter and psychedelia. Definitely a bunch of furry freak brothers worthy of being tarred with the 'next big thing' brush. These days I listen to the radio about as often as I renew my car tax, but there are three radio broadcasters for whom I have the greatest respect: the sadly clog-popped Alan 'Fluff' Freeman; the equally no-longer-with-us Tommy Vance; and 'Whispering' Bob Harris. I have fond memories of meeting both Fluff and TV (in a lift in a Maida Vale block of flats and backstage at a Black Sabbath gig, respectively), but never had the honour of shaking Bob Harris' hand. Still haven't, but I did get to see him introduce Rival Sons to the stage on Monday with words to the effect that they are his new favourite band. That was indication number two that the evening was going to be a bit special. Number three came when Mrs Shelf-Stacker pointed out a silver-haired gentleman stood behind us with a shit-eating grin plastered across his famous mug: yep, Jimmy Page was roughing it in a sticky-floored North London sweat box checking out the soon-to-be-mighty Rival Sons and heirs to Zeppelin's throne.

So what's any of this got to do with vinyl? Well, Rival Son's new album is out, it's the mutt's nuts and you can get it on paving slab-heavy double vinyl or on a little, shiny, plastic, bird scarer if you want to go all retro on us and buy a CD.

In the meantime, check out this footage of the band performing On My Way at the Electric Ballroom on Monday night.