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PKD Festival 2013 July 20 - One4Review

PKD Festival 2013  July 20

| On 21, Jul 2013

Has it really been 12 months since PKD 4? To me it hardly seems so but I guess to the main brains behind this ever growing and improving extravaganza Mark Bennett and Stuart Prentice I guess it has been a hard slog for all of those days. Ably supported by a whole host of volunteers these guys pour out their heat and soul and given the weather bucket loads of sweat as well to make this an annual event that is a must in anyone’s diary.

There is the derby itself, numerous play areas for the kids, stalls selling everything and nearly 12 hours of music which covered a whole spectrum of tastes.

Opening up proceedings music wise at the unenviable early time of 10.30 it was a pleasure to see those almost too talented youngsters Lost Fleet once again taking the embryo of a crowd by storm laying out their wares of solid rock showcasing their obvious star quality. The only down side for me was that there wasn’t enough people there to witness their performance but they didn’t let this distract in any way from a thoroughly impressive performance once again.

Coming hot on their heels was another up and coming band by name of the cavaliers. Again this was a solid rocking performance and one that was appreciated by the growing crowd. This was the first time I had witnessed them play but have to say they made a good impression and I’m looking forward to the next performance.

Changing the tempo somewhat and also the age demographic, unnamed unplugged were just that. The trio performed a gentler set but one that was totally in keeping to the now blisteringly hot summer weather that had arrived and bringing with it even more people. I enjoyed their thirty minute slot and am sure I was not alone in doing so. Here’s to the next time guys.

The mellow mood continued with Grace Black taking centre stage next and her selection of soul standards ballads and an excursion into cool jazz was the ideal fare to spend the next 30 minutes. Accompanied by guitarist Jimmy, as always Ms Black did herself proud in fact I for one think that this was the best I had seen her perform.

Keeping the mood going next to entertain was the classy David Mutch. Always dressed to kill, this time a la James Bond, Mutch performed a slightly different set for him, no showstoppers on this occasion but a blend of Sinatra, Don Henley, Tony Christie, Matt Munro and Van Halen, yeah really, gave one and all the chance to witness his abundant singing skills and style.

When those Blues Brothers were on the bill last year they were normal sized blokes, but I guess the diets have obviously gone to the wall. Okay not really, they were resplendent in ‘fat suits’ but still managed to perform all the standard numbers with an added touch of humour. I loved the set but will have nightmares for ages with their finale!!

The unfortunate delay of the next performer caused a hiatus but given the sun and food and drink available the crowd didn’t mind too and then Elvis was in the arena. In actual fact it was Paul Thorpe and his lady backing singers but that didn’t matter. He must have been melting in his leather cat suit but the intensity of his performance and the sheer number of The King’s songs he packed in to his set was almost mind blowing. Hardly pausing for breath the time just flew by.

Superstars to the fore currently because once Elvis left the building Neil Diamond entered. This of course was Tam Scott doing his 30 minutes in the style of the great singer. I have seen Diamond perform and Scott has captured the man vocally so that closing your eyes it is him. As usual the number of classic tracks, America, I’m a Believer, Cracklin’ Rosie and Sweet Caroline to name but a few were given the treatment and a thoroughly enjoyable set was to the taste of most of the now packed crowd.

If it wasn’t enough that this was his brainchild Mark Bennett hadn’t finished there. Oh no together with wife Lynsay he fronts Blue Delta an amazing covers band. Ian Craig is still the uber talented guitarist and with new rhythm section of Grieg on bass and Jay on drums they stormed their set from the off. As in previous times they have performed at this event no matter how high the energy level already is they manage to crank it up several notches. The diversity of the covers is wide the vocal ability is superb, the musicianship top drawer and Bennett’s natural comedy talent all added to the performance. As is becoming quite a ritual the closing number, well a meggamix really, of some of Queens’ greatest hits would have raised the roof if it wasn’t an open air gig, and with a dancing troupe thrown into the mix as well what could beat it.

The next set came from Stevie Agnew, the Dunfermline based singer/ songwriter who has a huge following partly due to his constant gigging. This was the first time I had seen him perform and have to say it was very much to my taste and many, many more there beside me. His all too short set was inspiration to me to find more of his material to listen to and enjoy.

It was back to groups for the next act the new to me Gilly Flowers. Fronted by Kirsten Adamson this four piece band had a very good set packed with mainly their own material. The band have been laying down tracks recently and I will be checking them out. Watch out for them I think they have a load of potential and Ms Adamson has a distinctive voice that could take her far.

The ever changing styles continued big style with the set of Shameless. Previously they had been a trio but there was the addition of a harmonica player which really added to the sound. As previously their eclectic mix of styles folk rock a billy pop they had it covered. As always they were a welcome addition to proceedings and I look forward to more in the future.

The hard working guys who had done the techy stuff throughout the day got their chance to strut their stuff in the next set. The Session are a slightly more mature band than some, but they are not short of presence and talent. These five strong band play rock covers to a very high standard and as always they are good value. A few Scottish bands numbers got the treatment and they certainly did them all justice. I look forward to their set every year and am never disappointed.

With the time moving on into early evening it was the turn of Clarke and Boj to entertain and they did with style. Two guys, two guitars and an amazing voice is what they brought to the table and it was ample for the needs. A variety of styles Seal, Elvis and Biffy Clyro as examples but each pulled off easily. Their set was another that was well received by all.

Another young, talented group of rockers were the nest offering and their name was Fire in Effect. I had seen them previously so knew what to expect and they dished up a set of brand new material. Maybe I am getting old but they did seem incredibly loud, but they rocked throughout their set. Yet another example of the quality of young musicians with bags of talent.

Penultimate band of the day was River Runs Red. This band pumped out the rock tune from the off again majoring on covers. They played with style and bags of talent and performance value. Although it had been a long day they reenergised the audience and certainly made a whole bunch of new fans along the way.

Topping the bill was the AC-DC tribute act Forever Young. As last year these four strong hard playing performers had all the touches of the band they emulate, even down to the guitarist dressed like Angus Young in shorts and school cap. AC-DC have always been a band I enjoyed but never seen but with these guys around I have to question if I need to. It’s a pity that there were less audience left to enjoy the set as some previous acts.

The whole event was a success and I certainly hope that loads of money was raised for the nominated charity ‘Cash for Kids’.

I think everyone who attended should be joining me in thanking the sponsors, organising committee especially Mark and Stuart a huge vote of thanks. I just wonder guys how are you gonna top this one??

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