Friday 5th June, 2009 @ King George V Playing Fields, Hereford, ENGLAND.





The following eight acts were selected by Andrew Marsden for The Friday Session ‘Introducing’ show and were broadcast live on the Friday night for BBC Radio Hereford and Worcester:


Jack's Hammer

It’s always a tough spot as one of the early opening bands at a festival, but totally undeterred by a meagre crowd Jack’s Hammer still gave an enjoyable insight into their live performance.

Formed way back in 1993 and every inch a rock band, the veterans played a melodic, riff laden style of progressive rock/metal that was laced with atmosphere and incisive lead guitar solos.  Unfortunately with only a short time allocation they played just two songs, opening with "Sooner Or Later" and included the lengthy epic entitled ‘Wicker Man’, but it gave a nice taste of their very distinctive sound. It was only a brief look at this band and I’m sure that a full set with a supportive crowd would be even more impressive.

Regrettably it has just been revealed that this was to be their last gig, as they have amicably decided to call it a day after 16 years! What a shame as there will be people like myself who will never really get to hear fully what they could offer.


Neil Ivison of THE MISERS
Neil Ivison of THE MISERS
The Misers

Taking to the stage with a healthy round of applause and lots of cheering The Misers began their short set with “Take Me Down“, the first of a set of songs all from their newly released debut album entitled “Amplified Life Stories”. Tonight they were playing in a cut down ‘duo’ format that featured Neil Ivison (Lead Vocals/Acoustic Guitar) and Adam Barry (Keyboards/Harmonica/Backing Vocals), both looked relaxed and ready to enjoy themselves. The sound wasn’t great initially and it took most of the first song to settle down but fortunately it did improve greatly for the rest of the set.

The Misers play an unusual blend of styles that’s based around a modern, alternative country rock vibe but also has the sounds of blues, folk and soul throughout different songs. “How are you, alright?” shouts Neil at the end of the first song to the small yet enthusiastic crowd, before launching straight into “Shuffle My Feet”. This is a catchy song that has some of younger members of the crowd gather by the stage, singing along to the chorus and even a suggestion of dancing for a while. Again, there’s a good sign of appreciation at the end of the song, this time Neil asks jokingly “Okay, so we have established you’re alright, but are you ready?” as if they’re about to launch into a ruckus rocker, but instead begin the gentle  acoustic  notes  of a  ballad called  “Bantam Weight”.  This song

displays the more soothing side of the band and features some very pleasant vocal harmonies. “Give It Up For Love” rounds off the set with a powerful and impressive performance of a cracking song.

It was a short but an enjoyable and interesting gig from The Misers. I found it quite striking that even though effectively playing an acoustic set, they still manage to project the music so strongly. They also maintained the crowd’s interest with tuneful and likeable songs, while always coming across as being very professional and competent. They are definitely a band to watch out for and worth taking a listen to their album (follow this link for review), which is available for digital download from itunes, etc or on CD from their website ( We recently interviewed Neil (follow this link for interview), where he explains the concept behind the band and about the making of their album.


Undercover Hippy

Despite a disastrous start caused by a host of technical problems that unfortunately took the impact away from his entrance, he was still able to impressively recover composure and put in an entertaining set.  The problems were mainly down to a new piece of equipment which enabled him to loop guitars and vocals and he had to discard it eventually.  The set was made up of 3-4 reggae flavoured acoustic songs glued together with well written, politically poetic vocal stories linked into gripping, hard hitting messages. It was a pleasant surprise that based on subconscious images created by the name, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy. Never judge a book…



They exploded onto the stage in a wail of squealing guitars before settling into the riffs of their blues based blend of rock. The heavy blues guitar ploughed its way through the set with plenty of enjoyable flairs and fills in between some storming riffs and backed by a steady, thumping rhythm section. However the growling vocals were a little too monotone, flat and certainly didn’t live up to the stirring excitement and much higher standard of the music. Not too bad a set with the exception of the last song which was quite weak, disjointed and slightly clichéd. They have the potential to be good but aren’t at the moment.


The Dead Pig Project

Tonight, Rob Lomax performed a solo acoustic set of three Dead Pig Project songs (as well as sneaking in a cover version of a song but cunningly from another unsigned artist). It was a set of clean and mature songs played with great panache and passion, rounded off by some fine vocals which nicely highlighted just what a talented man he is.


Small Engine Repair

Alternative acoustic guitar/ukulele based songs with dodgy vocals and four very similarly sounding songs. For tonight’s crowd, it merely provided background music.



Small Morris

The Zimbarbian Hip Hop rapper accompanied by a recorded backing track talked, shouted and preached his way through what seemed like a very long 15 mins. Interspersed very frequently with “yo”, “make some noise yo”, ”yeah” and “small morris yo” he used an assortment of industry clichés to make us believe he was a gangster from the ‘hood, which thankfully isn’t something particularly coveted in Hereford. The general disinterest shown by the majority of the crowd confirmed that most were unimpressed with his claim, and you felt he’d had a better chance of connecting by simply boasting ownership of a tractor or drinking some cider. Well, it would have worked for me…!


The Anomalies

By now the tent was getting fairly full and it was the biggest cheer of the night for The Anomalies. They kicked off with their diverse fusion of Hip Hop, Breakbeat, Ska and Indie sounds, opening with an almost Beasty Boys style vibe which featured plenty of DJ ‘scratching’.  They followed on with a curious and scatty, Indie sounding song with so many genre twists it was hard to keep track of them all. And so it continued for the rest of a very well received set, these guys are like mad scientists in a laboratory of music – what the hell have they created! Very intriguing...



Reviews and Photos by Dave Yates