GIRLSCHOOL - Camden Underworld
10 May 2007
View – stage left.
Four metal bands all trying their hardest, only one worth turning out to see.
Scavenger's Daughter opened proceedings in extreme metal fashion; the odd Maiden or Priest riff, lots of screaming and growling and widdly solos. Obviously trying hard, but that turned out to be the problem. Trying too hard. The extremeness of the vocals, the posturing, all forced and over stated, while the music was just ordinary.
Pretty much the same could be said of Dead Eye, a rough 4-piece that had me scurrying for the bar.
Dirty Rig were worth a mention, featuring Warrior Soul's singer Kory. The music is a throwback with an added touch of alcohol and sleazy rock'n'roll. OK, a LOT of alcohol, the band seemed unable to coherently finish the first few songs.
The highlight of the evening, the very reason for my being there, was Girlschool. Quite aside from falling in love with the absolutely stunning guitarist Jackie Chambers before the show, the band were as usual an absolute delight. Girlschool are completely incapable of disappointing. The talent is channelled intelligently, and they don't appear to work too hard on stage, because everything they do is done with a smile. They did what they do best, rocking and rolling and clearly enjoying themselves and that rubs off on the crowd. The inter track banter natural and fun too.
And if you're new to the band, it's not until you see them live that you realise just how many standards and anthems they have.
The set opened with "C'Mon Let's Go", with (the equally gorgeous) guitarist Kim McAuliffe on vocals and Denise Dufort's drums pounding away. Lead guitarist Chambers produced some damn fine solos too.
Throughout the set Kim and bassist Enid Williams shared lead vocals, and classics included "Hit & Run", "Screaming Blue Murder" and the ever favourite "Screaming Blue Murder". These mixed well with more recent songs from Not That Innocent and Believe.
For a former NWoBHM band Girlschool have survived well, and in a male dominated genre they must be one of the most successful all female rock bands around.
In a set dedicated to former guitarist Kelly Johnson, the band closed with "Take It All Away" and "London", a great show.