PLANET ROCKSTOCK – 2019 – PARK DEAN HOLIDAY PARK, TRECCO BAY – PORTHCAWL, SOUTH WALES – DAY 3 – SUNDAY 8TH DECEMBER
WORDS – MARK WARBURTON, PICTURES – PIPPA MAUNDER-WARBURTON
So onto the third and final day of a wonderful if wet and windy PLANET ROCKSTOCK, at Trecco Bay.
We headed into the main arena to catch the first band up THE DUST CODA who had recently played some UK dates including our very own Fuel Rock Club in Cardiff. A good size crowd had already gathered in anticipation of band on the up and in front man, John Drake – Guitar & vocals, they have a surefire winner to lead the band onto the next level. Tunes such as ‘Rock n Roll’ go down a treat , and with the latest Single ‘Breakdown’ featuring some great guitar work from Adam Mackie. Another new tune, the excellent ‘Let Me Go’ with its great rhythm section of , Scott Millar – Drums and Tony Ho – bass is a real crowd pleaser together with ‘When The Tide Comes in’. The mesmerizing ‘Sweet Love is Gone’ to the rocking ‘More It Fades’ lead us to final track ‘Demon’ from the new album, and tonight THE DUST CODA showed us they are a band going places.
Up next is a band who are playing their final gig before disbanding, AARON BUCHANAN & THE CULT CLASSICS, who feature a front man in Aaron Buchanan who is totally bonkers in his tinsle draped braces. Having witnessed the band play their raucous set a few times before i was looking forward to seeing what they could deliver in their final ever performance. What the PLANET ROCKSTOCK crowd got today was a great fun filled set led from the front by a complete showman, who went out with a blast. Tracks such as ‘Left Me for Dead’ and the HEAVENS BASEMENT tune ‘Fire Fire’ go down really well, together with the excellent ‘The Devil That Needs You’. ‘The frantic ‘Dancing Down Below’ is followed by an amazing trio of ‘My Sharona/Evil That Men Do/I Can’t Stand Losing You, is followed by a great guitar solo before we are treated to another HEAVENS BASEMENT tune ‘ the blistering ‘Heartbreaking Son Of A Bitch’. Final song of the night ‘Fire In The Fields Of Mayhem’ brings the house down and is a fitting way to end their final gig.
TYLER BRYANT AND THE SHAKEDOWN are one of those amazing new crop of bands who are destined for stardom, and on this performance tonight they definitely will make it to the top. The band recently supported the mighty AIRBOURNE and have been touring all over Europe these past months, and have really honed their skills as a formidable live act.
TYLER BRYANT AND THE SHAKEDOWN tear though a fast paced set including opener ‘Drive Me Mad from the bands latest album ‘Truth & Lies’ showcasing some amazing guitar work. ‘On To The Next’ is a massive tune with its catchy lyrics and mesmerizing hooks & riffs, before the brilliant salvo of ‘House On Fire’ and ‘Weak and Weapin’ have the appreciative PLANET ROCKSTOCK crowd begging for more. The cover of the ARTHUR CRUDUP tune ‘That’s All Right’ with its amazing slide guitar from Graham Whitford and drummer Caleb Crosby bringing his bass drum out to the front of the stage to showcase his skills too. The wonderful ‘Without You’ and the rasping ‘Couldn’t See The Fire’ lead us to final track ‘Lipstick Wonder Woman’ of this truly great set.
DAN REED NETWORK have been one of my favorite bands for the past 30 or so years so i was super happy when they reformed a few years back and started played live again. Besides being one of the best ever live bands, they are one of the nicest sets of people I’ve ever had the pleasure to meet, and in Dan Reed one of the most humble and wonderful human beings on the planet.
As i write this DAN REED NETWORK are currently touring the UK doing their ‘Slam ‘ opus from 1989 in its entirety, but what the PLANET ROCKSTOCK crowd got tonight was even better, a greatest hits set featuring the best of the best. It was none stop hit after hit, kicking off with ‘Make It Easy’ and ‘Slam’ with the band just absolutely loving it , bouncing around the stage and having a ball. Brion James is an exceptional guitar player which is showcased on the tracks such as the wonderful ‘Under My Skin’ and hit single ‘Tiger in A Dress’. The thunderous rhythm section of Melvin Brannon on Bass and Dan Pred on Drums smash the hits out such as the dance floor classic ‘Ritual’ from the bands debut album, and the raucous ‘Baby Now I’ from ‘The HEAT ‘ album.
The wonderful ballad ‘Rainbow Child’ gives Rob Daiker on keys a chance to shine in the spotlight together with superhuman frontman Dan Reed, leave the crowd wanting more. The catchy ‘Come Back Baby’ takes us to set closer , and personal favorite of mine ‘Get To You’ from the bands debut in which Dan get the crowd to interact and sing along.
DAN REED NETWORK delivered a truly epic performance tonight and that’s why they got our vote as band of the weekend.
So onto the final band of this great weekend, and Rock stalwarts URIAH HEEP who commence their high octane and polished set with ‘ Grazed By Heaven’, and you wouldnt think the band have been going 50 years would you? With founding guitarist Mick Box leading the charge and longtime vocalist Bernie Shaw, Phil Lanzon on keyboards, Russell Gilbrook on Drums and Davey Rimmer on bass deliver a great performance to the packed crowd.
‘Living The Dream’ from the bands latest album blends in well with 70s classics such as ‘Gypsy’ ‘Look at Yourself ‘and Rainbow Demon’, together with the brilliant ‘July Morning’ and ‘ Lady In Black’. The set absolutely flies before URIAH HEEP showcase the bands most famous tune, 70s classic rocker ‘Easy Livin’ that sends the crowd home happy.
To sum up what a wonderful Rocking Weekend we had at our first PLANET ROCKSTOCK, and Pippa and myself would like to thank Jon & the PLANET ROCK team for making us both feel welcome, and for giving us the opportunity to cover this prestigious event, heres to next year !!!