1-2-3-4 Action Tour - The Mill Preston - 6.12.04

For some undisclosed reason, headliners Towers Of London have pulled out at the last minute leaving the Cazals headlining an already mammoth 5 band line-up.

Local lads The Phlegm Fatales are a no nonsense punk trio. Shouty vocals, unexpected bursts of Dick Dale style surf guitar and short sharp songs litter the all too brief set. Next week at the same venue the band will be opening for The Vibrators in their most high profile gig to date. Up next The Jackpot Golden Boys. These boys are by far the most original act on tonight's bill featuring a frontman who's a manic ball of energy with extraordinary body language and a wacky guitarist who's instrument is the shape of a sunflower. It's fun all the way. Prog rock synths, rock guitars and sweet harmonizing culminate in a psychedelic feast for the ears with highly original structured songs. All this and a dance routine thrown in for good measure too.

Negative For Francis are a loud but professionally tight band who sound a little bit like a more heavier Franz Ferdinand with added electronica. There's a whole New York vibe to these Englishmen with early Talking Heads overtones. Synth combo Objects are a bit pretentious and hostile to their audience adding fuel to the whole North / South divide. The music may be a tad repetitive, but there is enough originality and style to suggest they may have the talent to make it. "Spies" is easily their best song which has a couple of members of The Cazals joining in with the fun.

The Cazals are a traditional rock band in the old fashioned sense of the word with a lanky frontman who's charisma makes up for unremarkable vocals. Unfortunately for the band band the venue is not exactly bursting at the seams with their fans, but still a set which lasts just over fifteen minutes shows scant regard for the people that have turned up. It's bad enough the Towers Of London have cancelled without the Cazals performing for a shorter time than the four bands previous.

Nicholas Paul Godkin

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