Mr Kyps, Poole

County Hospital/Constellation/Fearne/Bel Casino/Cella Creeps

Saturday night at Mr Kyps and the 1st semi Final of the Dorset Music Awards, last years event was won by Bournemouth’s The Longest Day who fought a hard battle with Disco’s Out(Murders In), Lady Winwoods Maggot, Mutant Vinyl and Sarah Griffin. This years prize is a place in the Final at the 02 Academy in Boscombe Saturday 23rd April.

County Hospital
County Hospital Gallery:

A draw has been made for the order of appearance and 1st band on are the zany County Hospital who take their name from a Laurel and Hardy film. The band arrive on the stage all dressed as though they were going into an operating theatre in hospital style scrubs……looking nothing like George Clooney from ER, more like Elliott from Holby. They performed some punk style up tracks such as ‘I Am Robot’ and everybody’s favourite Titties. The band are a nucleus of three Tim, Luke and Ed with other singers and musicians joining in at various times. The unbound energy and zany attics is to be commended kick starting the evening with style.

Constellation Gallery:

The support for next band Constellation was overwhelming, it was though the band had bought a few coach loads of fans with them, the noise as the band walked on stage was just amazing and before they even started they must have been given a big boost. The 5 piece band are lead by vocalist Ali Davis who owned the stage for the 30 minutes, with his dance moves getting lots of screams from the girls in the audience. The bands sound was that of a radio friendly indie rock style with well played twin guitars, numbers that included impressive ‘Valentine’ and the rousing ‘Don’t Stop the Music’ which kept up the audiences unbound enthusiasm right until the end.

Fearne Gallery:

The momentum is kept up as Fearne took to the stage, I think the bands own description of “Mumford and the Whale” described them well, the acoustic guitar lead songs sounded really fresh and well crafted. The lead singer Alex Beds looks much like a young Rolf Harris with his beard and glasses, with his fellow band members looking the part in their smart waistcoats. The four piece were very comfortable here and really looked like they were loving every minute of their 30 minutes in the spotlight. Their support from there own fans and members of the audience is also impressive with plenty of encouragement in-between songs. They have been on the local scene for a while slowly building a solid reputation with some prestigious support slots with the likes of Feeder and Athlete.

Bel Casino Gallery:

Bel Casino are a band the embraces their surroundings and living by the sea here on the South coast gives them plenty to inspire them. The inclusion in this semi-final is a result of lots of hard work and the band produce a performance that is full of some great songs with that laid back feel that living in this area gives. The bands musical ability is apparent with some great guitar work from the bands pin up Josh Lines backed well with a solid rhythm section of Ollie Parker and Johnny Drennan. Front man Chris Beane does his best to get the most out of the audience struggling a little to gain an atmosphere created following mammoth performances from Fearne and Constellation.

Cella Creeps Gallery: 0102

Last years finalists Mutant Vinyl have regrouped and emerged with a new band Cella Creeps, still fronted by highly ambitious front man Edwin Pope who arrives on stage surrounded by four sound monitors doing his best to give himself tinnitus before the age of 25. Reinventing something new certainly is not easy, Cella Creeps seem to be all about pushing boundaries and breaking down barriers, their experimental sound shaping effects are not as mainstream as possibly this competition would like. The performance is strong with lots of ambience build around some huge bass rifts coupled with some atmospheric guitar effects. At one point the during the performance the energetic Edwin jumps down off of the stage over the barrier into the audience and continues to play, giving the roadie a nightmare of tangled cable to deal with. Personally I love bands like this who try to create their own original identity but sadly I think I am in the minority.

So with the first Semi-Final over the favourites to go through to the final after tonight’s performance has to be Fearne and Constellation, the next Semi final is at Mr Kyps on the 9th April and has a further five bands Big Face Reggae , Evolver, Hessian, Mischa and ‘New Volunteer’ all fighting for a place in the final on the 23rd April.


Dave Chinery(Chinners)