TVD Live Shots: Britrock Must Be Destroyed: Reef, The Wildhearts, Dodgy, and Terrorvision at the Eventim Apollo, 5/6

Britrock Must Be Destroyed brings together four of the best UK bands who were flying high in the ’90s, each with their own unique sound. It’s a welcome comeback as these Britrock pioneers execute their mission to exhibit to the world that they can still bring the noise bigger and better than any of their contemporaries. Technically speaking it was a triple headliner with The Wildhearts, Reef, and Terrorvision rotating each evening playing extended sets. The London show would see Reef as the final band.

Opening the evening was power pop trio Dodgy who were added to the bill as a special guest. I remember these guys from back in the day as they had a couple of minor hits in the States. Nigel Clark and company continue to release new music, and they put on one hell of a show—the perfect opener to set the stage for what would be an intense groove filled evening of Britrock history. Funny enough, even the band themselves mentioned between songs that they questioned how they fit on the bill.

Next up was one of West Yorkshire’s most successful bands, Terrorvision. I had never heard of these guys before as I don’t recall listening to them back in the States, but holy shit they were great. Lead singer Tony Wright sounded spot on, and he doesn’t seem to age, while guitarist Mark Yates was melting faces with songs like “Alice What’s the Matter” and “Discotheque Wreck.” Brilliant set from these guys and I’ve been digging on their catalog ever since, especially the surprisingly good “comeback” record 2011’s Super Delux.

Third in the lineup was The Wildhearts. Ginger Wildheart and Co. came out guns -a-blazing. Even though the bands are all friends and this isn’t a competition, these guys were absolutely on fire; one might say full of piss and vinegar. They blasted through a high energy set—“My Baby is a Headfuck,” “Caffeine Bomb,” “Suckerpunch,” and my personal favorite “Vanilla Radio”—that made the foundation of the old Hammersmith Ballroom shake. (Lemmy would be proud.)

How these guys are not global superstars performing to sold-out stadiums is still way beyond me. We can only hope for a new record in 2018, and Ginger says that it’s coming. With the pace that this guy keeps—I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s sooner than later. Much sooner.

The final band of the evening was Glastonbury’s Reef. These guys put out a record called Glow in the late nineties that is one of my absolute favorite records of all time. While they did have a minor hit in the States, I never had the chance to see them live. Twenty some odd years later, they did not disappoint. The grooves were heavy, the vocals were perfect, and the song selection was divine.

Gary Stringer looked like a man on a mission to single-handedly bring back a dying breed of rock’ n’ roll that hasn’t been heard since the ’70s and to shut down the hype around the such newbies as Greta Van Fleet. Reef is the original, and they rightfully reclaimed their throne after an 18-year hiatus with a new record, and it’s bloody brilliant. Revelation is available in stores and online now, and it’s already a contender for my top 10 of 2018.

REEF

THE WILDHEARTS

TERRORVISION

DODGY

The Britrock Must Be Destroyed tour continues in Glasgow on the 19th with additional UK and Austrailia dates to follow.

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