The Anvil,Bournemouth

Max Raptor

Northern-based punk rockers Max Raptor have not played at The Anvil before and I couldn’t help but feel like apologising for Bournemouth, as the cold, damp weather seemed to have put people off of coming out on a Sunday night.

It was meant to be a four band affair; however Only Rivals had to pull out at the last minute, as they apparently crashed and wrecked their van (thankfully nobody was hurt but they couldn’t get to the venue). First on the bill were Irish heavy rockers Making Monsters, who took to the stage in front of a small but enthusiastic audience and they were a pleasant surprise. The female singer has real vocal ability and the band are solid musicians. I was extremely impressed with their performance all round and I’ll certainly be seeing them again if I get the chance.

Making Monsters
Making Monsters 12

After a slight lull, next up were Fort Hope, who started well with a strong set before they slowed proceedings down with their third song, “I’m On Fire”, which they dedicated to Making Monsters. During “Control”, the single which came out last year, they got the meagre audience participating by singing along. A few more people had arrived during their set, but by the time everyone was ready for Max Raptor to come on, it was clear that this was pretty much it for the night, a very disappointing scenario for the bands. For those of us that had bothered to turn up, however, it was a perfect opportunity to get up close and personal with the artists and the night took on an intimate feel which is missing from a lot of bigger gigs.

Fort Hope

Fort Hope 1

Max Raptor took to the stage in a blaze of attitude, with a track off of their “Portraits” mini album “Obey The Whips”. Singer Wil was out into the crowd straight away, which is pretty much where he stayed for most of the set, working the room. “Breakers”, the first single off of the “Mothers Ruin” album came next and then it was back to “Portraits” for “The Alarm”. The anthemic “Patron Saint of Nothing” followed and people started to get more into it, singing along with the lyrics, one guy bouncing around at the front.

Max Raptor
Max Raptor 12

The blistering “Back of a Barrel Wave” took things up a notch, and the pace was maintained by “Must Work Harder” and “Grace and Favours” and I was particularly pleased to hear my favourite track “Evangeline”. Vocalist Wil had everyone singing the chorus hook to current single “England Breathes” before they crashed into a perfect rendition of the song. To round off the night, the set closed with punk anthem “The King Is Dead”, when finally the tiny floor saw a few hardy souls flinging themselves around. I was disappointed when the set ended after ten songs; Max Raptor have such energy and passion for their live performances and I could have watched them all night.

All three bands were worth seeing and, to be honest, they didnít deserve the poor turnout, but we all did our best to make up for the lack of numbers by giving each band a warm welcome. With what promises to be a cracking summer of festivals this year, I just hope that all three of these bands will be recognised somewhere in at least one line up ñ catch all of them if you can.

Band Links

Words & Pictures By Vikkie Richmond.

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