Camden Rocks 2016: My Deadly Secret, IV, Evil Scarecrow, Sisteray and Billy Bragg kick off festival season
Returning for the fifth year on Saturday 4th June, Camden Rocks heralds the coming of the festival season. Packing in over two hundred bands across 20 of Camden’s most prestigious music venues, the day guaranteed vigour and carnage. The party kicked off at 12pm at the infamous World’s End, which was already steadily filling up, and the atmosphere was electric.
My Deadly Secret at Underworld
Thanks to the plethora of venues, Camden’s music fans diverged where their passions pulled them, and some of them first congregated in Underworld, where My Deadly Secret were opening the day. The crowds gathered somewhat tentatively, but when the ominous reverberating chords descended rapidly into a cacophony of pummelling guitar rifts and wailing heavy rock vocals, they soon began to show their appreciation.
IV at The Monarch
Shortly after, further down the road at the Monarch, another band started up. IV’s completely different style was indicative of the diversity of talent on display; the vocals swirled in anguish above the deafening feedback loop of the guitars. They committed to their experimental, shoegaze vibe when the guitarist scratched out a few notes with the help of a glass bottle.
Evil Scarecrow at Electric Ballroom
Later on, the Electric Ballroom was graced by the carnival-esque theatrics of Evil Scarecrow. This slightly tongue-in-cheek metal band attracted the biggest crowd thus far, with an undeniably charismatic frontman who requested ballroom dancing to the original heavy metal waltz of Dance of the Cyclops – and his audience happily obliged.
Sisteray at The Hawley Arms
Thanks to a well established enthusiastic following, the Hawley Arms literally shook at the hands of the confrontational, generational vitriol of Sisteray, whose brash indie rock was supplemented by heated, politically charged interjections: they didn’t hesitate to take a jab at Michael Gove, and Gentrification directly attacked the controversial process. Cold in Berlin had a more gothic edge, their frontwoman howling and clawing at the air like a banshee over riotous drums and screeching guitars.
Billy Bragg at Proud Camden
At just past 5pm in Proud, legendary songwriter Billy Bragg ascended to the stage for an hour that was part interview, part musical set. Whilst some of the crowd were frustrated with the lack of songs, those he did perform roused a nostalgic sing-along, Greetings to the New Brunette being a notable example; the interview itself confirmed that Bragg’s keen philosophical and political edge has not been blunted by the years.
Photos: Erol Birsen
For further information about Camden Rocks 2016 visit here.