Release The Bats, The 23 Enigma, Snakebite – Fri 18th Nov 2011

Tonight’s line up includes three contrasting acts each following their own unique direction in rock music. Fresh and thirsty for success these bands are very much active in these parts and are refusing to be ignored. I took my white Brighton arse to this lounge of screams to indulge in Croydon’s best priced eye-opening, ear-pleasing event of the remaining year. I was also given the chance to catch up with the bands before they were due on stage.

SNAKEBITE
Vocals – Jason
Guitar – Andrew
Bass – Jamie
Drums – Chris
The Bromley four piece unleash a furious and demonic sound upon the keen spectators gathered early for tonight’s proceedings. SNAKEBITE dominate the space effortlessly and lay down their raging promulgation like a pile of dead skin. The fact that they have been doing this for eight years now definitely shows. They start off with some of the most brutal tracks from their album ‘Created from Nothing’ for an aggressive set driven with powerful riffs, dark vigorous grooves and blood-spitting vocals. SNAKEBITE are like many bands in particular ways but stand alone with their original perception of metal and do it their own way.
QUICK CHAT WITH SNAKEBITE
If people were to compare you to other bands which bands would you like them to mention?
Pantera, Black Sabbath, Devil Driver
Best show so far and why?
Bloodstock 2011 because of the incredible turn out and the crowd’s reaction. Unexpected at 10:30 in the morning!
What else do you guys do for work?
Guitar teacher, postman, tattooist
Any good tattoos lately?
Jason: I enjoy a bit of portrait work from time to time. I recently did a portrait of Johnny Thunders from New York Dolls which was good fun
What is SNAKEBITE’s drink of choice?
Beer! Lager!
What do you guys think of Brighton?
We have played a couple of shows in Brighton at The Hobgoblin and Hector’s House. They went well and we would like to go back again. People know what they like in Brighton
When and where is the next show?
Camden Unicorn/ Friday 9 Dec 2011

THE 23 ENIGMA
Vocals/ Guitar – Dave
Bass – Jules
Drums – Chris
The 23 enigma refers to the belief that most events and occurrences are directly connected to the number 23.
From the bands opening track ‘The Chase’ it is clear that they have something different to offer; something heavy and lethargic with enduring meaning and magnitude. This hefty emotional rock is a fusion of apathy and truth which makes it authentic and appealing. We are hardly braced for the sheer intensity of THE 23 ENIGMA, but they capture a slushy emotional energy in their songs and generously slam it in our faces.
The music puts the crowd in a watchful coma, as we try to work out why this feels familiar and how three guys can produce such a weighty noise. There is a strong feeling of deepness and a raw honest passion in their performance. It reminds me of the late 80s Seattle sound because of the heavily distorted guitars and contrasting song dynamics. They segregate the sound of each individual instrument, so that each element is defined, and hold it all together within the body of a song. One band that strongly springs to mind is Mudhoney.
By the time ENIGMA finish their set with ‘Masquerade’ they have a large and attentive crowd. It surprises me that the stage is left in tact. The stress in the music had me thinking bits of instruments would be flying all over the place. Do not underestimate the significance of the loud, original and affecting force that is THE 23 ENIGMA.

RELEASE THE BATS
Vocals – Chris
Guitar – Gary
Bass – Will
Drums – Sam
Headliners RELEASE THE BATS amalgamate in their stage presence, and although front man Chris does his job, the band is a single force united. The music and the image being conveyed are done so as a collective. Each of the guys has a moment or two to shine but generally you find yourself watching the whole band. The Bats stalk the audience with swagger and conviction like a small posse of ravens. They have a tight trousers policy and two of them have moustaches, shrewd and thought-provoking you might say, enough to intrigue a receptive audience at least.
The sound is late nineties alternative rock, gothabilly, garage punk with a distinct new wave edge. Firm steady beats, harmonious riffs with an element of twang and deep soggy lyrics. Songs seem to roll of them with ease and the music strongly reflects the band’s image. Some of their song lyrics have a particularly repetitive sing-along quality, such as ‘Spooky Julie’ and ‘Spinning in a Lover’, which encourages the audience to get more involved with the performance. RELEASE THE BATS have an appealing commercial style to their music which allows them to explore popular territory as well as underground, if they wish. They have a style but each song has its own personality. Appreciate that they may sound like bands like 80s Matchbox B Line Disaster (Brighton Boys), The Cramps or New York Dolls but they are pursuing a brand new direction in this category of rock as a reflection of such influences. They keep the music personal to them giving it a unique identity.
RELEASE THE BATS bring something different, it’s a step in a fresh newfangled direction. Nighty Night is The Bats’ debut EP released this year. Get it delivered to your door by bat with a free supplement of guano by visiting facebook.com/releasethebats.
QUICK CHAT WITH RELEASE THE BATS
If people were to compare you to other bands which bands would you like them to mention?
8Os Matchbox B line Disaster, The Badseeds, The Cramps
Best show so far and why?
We headlined the Horrorfest in Shoreditch this year and that went really well
What else do you guys do for work?
Full time musicians, chambermaid, tattooist
Any good tattoos lately?
Will: I try to make all my tattoos good!
What is RELEASE THE BATS’ drink of choice?
Anything alcoholic
What do you guys think of Brighton?
We have not played any shows in Brighton but we would really like to. I think our music would make sense in Brighton, people have diverse tastes

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