You want 20 bands over 3 days at Station 18 Festival which takes place at Hangar 18 Music Venue in Swansea, South Wales? £35 for the entire weekend? At £1.75 per band, that is an absolute bargain. Throw in a well-stocked bar in an air-conditioned venue, and the only thing that is missing, my friend, is you. Here is our preview of the first full day of action – Saturday, April 30th where the action gets underway at 2pm.
The ringing in the ears from opening night has begun to wear off, the perfect time really to get in the ring for round two, and getting Saturday off to a fine start are Kent-based blues-hearted rockers Gallows Circus. Big-ass riffs are very much the order of the day and ‘Hell’s Whiskey’ has them in abundance. The only question that remains to be asked is: have you packed your crucifix? Up next are Hertfordshire’s very own Electric Black. Influenced by the likes of Bad Company, Jet, Rival Sons & Black Stone Cherry, the band recently released their debut album ‘The Calm Before’ and had Classic Rock Magazine exuding: “Solid, no-frills hard rock from start to finish. Clearly driven to succeed, Electric Black’s first effort holds plenty of promise for the future.” Listen out for ‘Love Is A Light (For The Lost)’, it’s a bit of a banger. Electric Black passes the baton to Cornwall-based alternative rock trio 50 Year Storm and if you close your eyes and imagine Royal Blood as a trio, when you open your eyes then 50 Year Storm might just be standing in front of you. Fuelled by the solid drum work from Emma Limn, 50 Year Storm could be your new favourite band and you just don’t know it yet. Check out ‘GRACE’ but make sure you have it loud…louder than that, mate, LOUD!
Once the storm has passed, South Wales rockers Cancel The Transmission are up. Hook-filled, screaming-the-chorus-back-at-the-band rock and roll is on the agenda, and expect a set full of anthems-in-waiting – such as ‘Rise Again’ – that will have you nodding your head and tapping your toes in admiration. The energy ramps up a notch or two with the arrival of Twister from the North East of England. Coming off the back of their own headline tour, Twister – led by the charismatic frontman Stevie Stoker – will hit the Swansea stage at pace, and knock the audience for six. A bit of glam here, a bit of gritty rock and roll there, Twister is all about having a grand time, new single ‘Don’t Play Nice’ is a bit of alright. One of those bands that not only look like they belong on larger stages, but play as if they are already on them. Powerhouse rock trio Häxan should also be arriving in Swansea having blown eardrums on a run of dates with Swedes Thundermother, and Beth Blade and The Beautiful Disasters, sadly for reasons only known to Thundermother it was not to be and everything went tits-up on the tour that could have been dubbed “The How NOT To Win Friends And Influence People Tour”. Never mind though, you lucky people of Swansea get to enjoy an evening in the company of a band who will not be putting Edinburgh traffic enforcement officers on their Christmas card list anytime soon. ‘Nine Lives’ and ‘Skeletons’ are the ones to get the necks going – total bloody bangers.
The stars are starting to align for Ethyrfield, and everything is beginning to fall into place for the progressive rock trio. A few weeks after their appearance at Station 18, the Devon-based band heads out on the road as special guests to acclaimed innovators Von Hertzen Brothers. Calling at places like KK’s in Wolverhampton, and The Underworld in London, these eight dates will give the young chaps some invaluable experience on the road and will get them in front of new audiences every night. For now though, let Zac, Ben, and Dan impress you with a sound that you won’t believe is coming from three guys so young. Bringing Saturday to a fitting conclusion will be hometown girl Chez Kane. Making her solo debut in Wales, Chez might just find herself on the end of the most rousing reception of the entire weekend. Since the release of her debut solo album – one of the top three albums of 2021 – it has been a bit of a whirlwind for Chez. America loves her, mainland Europe is going gaga for her Danny Rexon-produced album, and with James Gunn seemingly tasked with bringing good music back to the masses through his ‘Peacemaker’ TV show – is it only a matter of time until we see John Cena in his tightie whities dancing around to Chez’s monster smash ‘Rocket On The Radio’? I’d buy that for a dollar! It’s fair to say that the Scottish contingent here at DGM Towers are well-jealous of our guys in Wales who will be at Swansea, but, it’s not long until the sweaties make the journey south for Rockin The Bowl in Sheffield where of course Chez is also performing.
Ticketing information for Station 18 Festival can be found here.
Live shots by Rob Wilkins