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  LEGENDS OF ROCK: YARMAGEDDON PART 3
Vauxhall Holiday Park, Great Yarmouth
6th-9th March 2014


Liz Medhurst

liz medhurst



legends of rock
Alix Anthony

It was that time of year again. A must on the festival calendar, Legends Of Rock, one of the offerings from Classic Rock Tours, is firmly established as four days of partying, excellent musicianship and utter enjoyment.

As is now traditional, there were fifty bands in four days, all playing full sets. This meant wall to wall music from the Glam Rock party on the Thursday night, then the main days where the music starts before midday and goes all the way through until nearly sunrise, resulting in a complete impossibility to see everyone. This is a nice problem to have and much better than the alternative I think.

You just have to work out your own way to last the distance so you can party as much as possible. I have a yoga mat and I'm not afraid to use it...

Article continues below...



Legends Of Rock is a mixture of originals, covers and tributes. It's unusual to cover the latter two here at MetalTalk Towers, but this fits in nicely with the ongoing debate happening in these pages about if all of the classic songs have been written, and how Rock and Metal are going to be carried on to future generations once the originals start leaving us.

This weekend, looking at the range of tribute bands and the audience reactions, it is clear that the music is in no danger of dying out. The songs have a life of their own outside of the original performers, yet the artist's performances were appreciated in their own right – absolutely right as the standard of the musicians here is top class. Plenty of people were inspired to check out the back catalogues of the various bands after hearing their work and that is a Good Thing.

legends of rock

Yes, tributes and covers are not going to realistically play a part in the creation of rock history but they are part of the evolution of the art form. You don't need to analyse things closely however, just enjoy it – which is pretty much a given here. As Eddie Yates, organiser and all round legend himself, put it: "I love it, it's so much fun, I am a punter once the event starts".

So, from Blues Rock to Power Trios to full-on Metal to Melodic Rock and nightly jam sessions of the highest quality, Yarmageddon really does have something for everyone, all under one roof. And with the standard festival caveat that I can't possibly mention everyone, these are some of the highlights for me...

Friday 7th March
Tarot card of the day: Justice
The balance of equal and opposites. Karma. Alchemy. Aligned to the Egyptian goddess Maat, and Raguel, the archangel of harmony.


First up was Stargazer's Whitesnake set, on at 11.45am, or, in festival world, breakfast time. But it was worth it as these guys are so talented and what's not to love about a heavy dose of Whitesnake before lunch? The standard was duly set with highlights being the likes of Judgement Day and Blindman presented in epic form.

legends of rock

After this it was the first appearance of the event for Howie G, who may have hit the event record for how many different sets he could appear in – I counted seven in all. This one was with his own Howie G Revue, where the V Lounge received a masterclass in Les Paul performance, while Mama went through the Genesis catalogue next door, heralding the first of many shuttles between rooms to catch clashing sets. Fortunately the rooms are next door to each other with no sound bleed so it was a do-able challenge.

Later that afternoon Pat McManus completely tore up the V Lounge and those who hadn't seen the band before quickly became firm fans. There is something very special about the set of the Irish rocker, the astounding musicianship that kicks a serious groove. Pat introduced us to guitarist Ali Clinton, who was celebrating his eighteenth birthday, and treated us to some blistering twin guitar loveliness to end the set on.

Later that evening another blues rock power trio, Virgil and The Accelerators, generated a massive buzz and had the crowd on their feet. Virgil McMahon won the title of Best Guitarist in the 2013 European Blues Awards, which is a hell of a title to live up to in a park full of prodigious talent. Virgil, like Ali Clinton, made his professional stage debut when he was a young teen, a real affirmation of how the music is getting passed down through the generations. The band are about to release their second album, 'Army Of Three', which is well worth checking out.

legends of rock

The triple whammy of Towers Of Stone, Walkway and Doors Alive kept the standard at a super-high level. In the case of the latter, they were breathtakingly mesmerising, with perfect renditions of The Doors psychedelic trippiness, which seemed a fitting place to call it a night after the pre-dawn start.

Saturday 8th March
Tarot card of the day: The High Priestess
Intuition, hidden depths. Guards the mystery that lies beyond the veil of the subconscious. The card for poets and writers.


Breakfast today was brought to us by Gallus Cooper. This Alice Cooper tribute is remarkable for the attention to detail, and all of the props were here – nurses, babies, ghouls and of course the UK tour snake. The gallows had to be left behind this time, due to height restrictions on the stage. There was plenty of room on the floor for the ten foot Frankenstein however, who weaved through the audience, prompting cries of "Down in front!"...

legends of rock

This was an inspired first band on, as Saturday is designated Fancy Dress, and the theatrics and costumes continued off stage through the day with the most eclectic array of costumes including superheroes, Banana Splits, fairies, gorillas, more inflatable guitars than you can shake a stick at and a rock and roll party that takes some beating.

Alix Anthony made his debut with Classic Rock Tours at this event. A seasoned pro with a magic touch, Alix has played and toured with some amazing names in the rock and funk world, and brought his own blend and style to the proceedings with amazing renditions from Hendrix through to funk.

Alix and his band pitched the set list perfectly as the dance floor filled up with many dozens of people abandoning themselves to the groove. It's a delight to experience this sort of stage presence and talent, and I wasn't alone in thinking this. Famed mascot Eddie the Head popped in to get a piece of the action after he had finished doing his thing for Hi-On Maiden next door in the Regency Room. Now we know what he likes when he is off-duty...

"But life's not a wheel, with chains made of steel, so bless me..."

legends of rock

Stargazer followed this, playing their Deep Purple and Rainbow set. This is a band who don't bother with recreating the look and mannerisms of the originals – a futile task here considering the changes to the line up of both bands – and instead take a selection from the breadth of the material available and simply play it brilliantly, with a touch of magic.

It's difficult to pinpoint exactly where the magic happens - it's located somewhere within the combination of the harmony lines between guitar and keyboards, the pristine vocals, the driving rhythm section, and of course the subject matter. Add to this the energy of the crowd and a band that play from the heart and soul with a clear love of what they do and you have a perfect encapsulation of the essence of this event.

So for me, the intensity and the wow factor of the day had peaked with Alix Anthony and Stargazer, but there was still so much more to enjoy.

Fleetwood Bac always put in a great set, with guitar and drums being provided by current and former Voodoo Six members Matt Pearce and Dave Cavill. After this, Lawless played their debut album 'Rock Savage' in its entirety, demonstrating an impressive merge of Metal and melody.

legends of rock

With The Buster James Band continuing the party atmosphere with their nitro-injected rock and roll, followed by Sack Sabbath, who are still the only Sabbath tribute that I can listen to, all that remained was Jimi Anderson's Late Night Jam. In a complete stamina fail, I managed to stay awake for the start time and then crashed. Oh well, enough is as good as a feast, more yoga tomorrow...

Sunday 9th March
Tarot Card of the Day – Seven of Fire
Standing up for what you believe in. Accept that you can't please everyone.


Well I firmly believe in happiness and in rock and roll, so Zeus it was, raising the happiness quotient of everyone in the room, packing four hours worth of songs into 90 minutes with the most creative, heavy and fun mash ups.

This led into a good afternoon bout of Prog as Fragile with Claire Hamill went through the Yes catalogue, before Think Floyd took us through a celebration of Pink Floyd's material. I missed the Rush tribute, Bravado, but I am reliably informed that I was a muppet for doing so as they were brilliant.

legends of rock
Virgil And The Accelerators

Another thing that I firmly believe in is that there is enough success to go round for everyone. Nowhere was this epitomised more than the house band Mega Jam, where 23 members of five bands shared the limelight and played swap the band to great effect, including a mash up of AC/DC and Led Zeppelin led by Persian Risk vocalist Carl Sentance – which they just about got away with.

One of the highlights of the jam was a group of amazing musicians at an event containing many tribute bands, playing a song from an act that that some would regard as a fake band, about a song that isn't quite original but a tribute... is it a brilliant piece of self awareness, or irony, oh I don't know what the fuck it is all I know is that I loved it.

So, featuring Tamás Czemez (vocals) and Gus Mark (lead guitar) from Stargazer, Howie G (acoustic guitar), Mario Ramjhun and Greg Gallagher from Stonefree on bass and drums and Steve Briggs from Stonewire making a special appearance as the devil, here is Tenacious D's 'Tribute':



A band that have stood their ground and developed their own identity is Splintered Soul. Coming towards the end of a weekend filled with great music, the five piece were a revelation with their distinctive brand of Cinematic Metal which was edgy, exciting and immaculately delivered. The songs were complex yet accessible and lead vocalist Erica Mengold has an incredible voice that soars over the Prog-influenced heavy backing.

Also taking a major role in Splintered Soul's unique identity is violinist Sally Jo. Yes, the words "violin" and "Metal" don't always go together, but in this case the blend with the awesomely talented band is a combination that absolutely works to great effect. This is a band that have a real chance of being a major success, and their debut album 'Lore' is eagerly awaited.

legends of rock

So in the end, the verdict on Yarmageddon is that although there is always room for improvement, it is greater than the sum of its parts. It's a complete no-brainer to attend this event for the fantastic partying, great people, new bands to discover and an immersion in all that is good about rock and Metal. You can't put a price on that.

Next events from Classic Rock Tours:
Rhodes Rock Espana – June 4 to 11 2014, Benalm´dena, Spain
Legends of Rock: The Originals – 16-19 October 2014, Vauxhall Holiday Park, Great Yarmouth
Legends of Rock: Yarmageddon Part 4 – 5-8 March 2015, Vauxhall Holiday Park, Great Yarmouth

See www.classicrocktours.co.uk for full details.


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24.3.14











 

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blues festival FORMER WHITESNAKE MAN ANNOUNCED FOR THE GREAT BRITISH RHYTHM AND BLUES FESTIVAL
"We are really excited about the changes we are making and hope they will attract a wider audience..."

armored saint ARMORED SAINT TO HEADLINE OZZFEST MEETS KNOTFEST KICK-OFF PARTY
The September 23rd pre-festival concert includes a night of performances from Armored Saint, Havok, Exmortus and Thrown Into Exile...

new england EXCLUSIVE: NEW ENGLAND ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER TOUR DATES INCLUDING JAPAN
New England have announced tour dates in support of last year's vinyl release 'I Know There`s Something Here' and upcoming album 'Live At The Regent Theater...

british lion STEVE HARRIS' BRITISH LION TO HEADLINE PLANET ROCKSTOCK
"Fundamentally, it's still rock, and if you see it live, it's really powerful live..."

second relation SECOND RELATION PREMIERE TITLE TRACK OF FORTHCOMING THIRD ALBUM 'ENO'
Austrian prog rockers Second Relation's new single and video is premiering today and it's got Europe in a buzz...

amorettes THE AMORETTES ANNOUNCE SECOND LONDON SHOW ON CO-HEADLINE TOUR
"Our show at Our Black Heart in London has sold out in ten days, which is fantastic! How quickly could this one sell out?"

thunder THUNDER PLAN TO GIVE THE GAME AWAY WITH A NEW BOOK
The band plan to launch the book at an event being held as part of the 'Louder Than Words' literary festival in Manchester on Saturday 12th November.

rudolf schenker SCHENKERS AT WAR: RUDOLF BREAKS HIS SILENCE ON MICHAEL'S ACCUSATIONS
"He's a trick master, and he's a wannabe. And that's it. He can do whatever he wants..."

jon oliva SAVATAGE MAINMAN JON OLIVA RECOVERING FROM STROKE
"I lived the rock n' roll lifestyle since I was 18. It's all I knew and I enjoyed the ride very much..."

ramblin man RAMBLIN' MAN FAIR 2017 DATES ANNOUNCED PLUS WHO WE THINK COULD HEADLINE NEXT YEAR
After what was probably the best rockin' weekend of the year so far, we didn't have to wait long before we could start planning for the 2017 rematch...

airbourne AIRBOURNE ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER HEADLINE UK TOUR
The band will play ten UK date beginning in Portsmouth and Norwich on November 17th and finish off with two nights at The Electric Ballroom in Camden, London...

black stone cherry BLACK STONE CHERRY ANNOUNCE UK TOUR
"We have never done anything like this before and we knew the UK was the only place to do it. That's all we're gonna say about it!"

gary rossington LYNYRD SKYNYRD UPDATE WITH MORE CANCELLATIONS DUE TO GARY ROSSINGTON ILLNESS
"Currently the band hopes to resume touring on Thursday 4th August at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, The Woodlands..."

extreme EXTREME CELEBRATE 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF 'PORNOGRAFFITI' ALBUM WITH 'PORNOGRAFFITI LIVE 25/METAL MELTDOWN'
"Some of these songs were never played live before so we had to go back and relearn them for the tour."

ozzy osbourne OZZY OSBOURNE: "I'M NOT HAPPY BEING SOBER"
"It scares me. I hear all the time people say that they have another drink in them but they may not have another sobriety in them..."

paul rodgers IT'S NOT ALL RIGHT NOW! PAUL RODGERS SUES DONALD TRUMP
"We will make America great again. God bless you and good night, I love you."

heavy metal HEAVY METAL HELPS PEOPLE DEAL WITH MORTALITY ACCORDING TO OFFICIAL STUDY
"Metal music can be seen as cultural good for fans and thereby can form part of their social identity."

motorhead MOTÖRHEAD STILL RUNNING DOWN THE HIGHWAY: PHIL, MIKKEY AND EDDIE ALL GEARED UP FOR FORTHCOMING DATES
"Every snare hit I do from now on until the end of my career will be a small tribute to Lemmy..."

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN'S STEVE HARRIS DROPS THE PRICE OF HIS ESSEX MANSION BY £1MILLION
The eight-bedroom mansion was on the market for £6.75million in 2012 but it's "guide price" is now a mere £3.95million...

hrh aor ALL GUNS BLAZING FOR NEW HRH AOR 5 ANNOUNCEMENT
Phil Lewis & Tracii Guns unite under the L.A. Guns banner once again for next year's HRH AOR 5 being held next March at Camp HRH in North Wales...

deep purple DEEP PURPLE 'LIVE AT THE NEC' DVD ON THE WAY: FAREWELL JON, WELCOME DON
The two share keyboard duties during the night in a very fitting "passing-of-the-torch" moment...

status quo ROCK 'TIL YOU DROP WITH STATUS QUO 1981-1986 VINYL BOX SET
In addition to the studio albums the box set will include an extra disc of b-sides and extended mixes...

zz top ZZ TOP TO RELEASE THEIR VERY FIRST OFFICIAL LIVE ALBUM IN SEPTEMBER
"In an abstract surrealism style, this collection is a definitive chronicle of the band hangin' together for four plus deluxe decades..."

tygers of pan tang TYGERS OF PAN TANG "SPECIAL TIME" HAS COME WITH NEW RELEASE
"The new Tygers album is finished, done and dusted and ready to unleash on our 'Tygertastic' audience. You're gonna love this one, it's a MONSTER..."

andy fraser ANDY FRASER OF FREE'S LAST RECORDING WITH SAIICHI SUGIYAMA ONLINE HERE
"'Melting Away' became one of Andy's last recordings. He still had so much to offer and I was really looking forward to continuing to work with him."

ritchie blackmore RITCHIE BLACKMORE'S RAINBOW TO PLAY AGAIN BUT WITH LESS DEEP PURPLE SONGS
"I would do probably ninety-five percent Rainbow songs; that's what they seem to want to hear. And it didn't occur to me. I just naturally assumed they wanted to hear everything."

saxon EXCLUSIVE: THIS IS WHAT OUR FAVOURITE ROCKERS THINK OF THE CURRENT POLITICAL CLIMATE
Comment from Saxon, Slash, Thunder, Iron Maiden, Uli Jon Roth, Hawkwind, Cher, Johnny Rotten, Machine Head And More...

beyond the black UK EXCLUSIVE: BEYOND THE BLACK SINGER JENNIFER HABEN IS LOST IN FOREVER AS FIVE MEMBERS DEPART THE BAND
"I have enjoyed the time together with the guys very much and am grateful for everything we have achieved together in Germany. I am currently looking for new colleagues..."

cats in space CATS IN SPACE SET TO RELEASE SLADE CLASSIC WITH DANNY BOWES OF THUNDER ON GUEST VOCALS
"It's is one of my favourite Slade songs, so when they asked me to sing on their version it took me a good second and a half to say yes..."

guns n roses WAS BREAKING NEWS: GUNS N' ROSES ADD MORE TOUR DATES FOR OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER
The Gunners' newly announced dates are for South America with ten dates in Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Chile and Colombia with more to be announced soon...

keith moon YOU WON'T GET FOOLED WITH OFFICIAL KEITH MOON COMMEMORATIVE DRUM HEAD
Manufactured as a special, custom product by Remo, these 14" high-gloss drum heads are a perfect collector's item for true fans of the legendary drummer and The Who...

the answer WAS BREAKING NEWS: THE ANSWER AND THE DEAD DAISIES ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER UK TOUR
"The fact that we get to debut this new material with our mates The Dead Daisies just adds to the rush we're currently experiencing. You really don't want to miss this one!"

ian gillan IAN GILLAN SAYS: "IT'S A WONDERFUL THING, VINYL..." WITH NEW COLLECTION ABOUT TO BE RELEASED
"You just bought something significant, not easily disposable. And look at the sleeves - aren't they cool..."

quireboys THE QUIREBOYS NEW ALBUM ON THE WAY: "THE LYRICS ON THE TITLE TRACK ARE SOME OF SPIKE'S BEST EVER!"
"I approached the songwriting from a different angle and it felt good. There's a lot of passion there."

48 hours 48 HOURS TO ROCK THE UK TO A CITY OF ASHES
"We're hitting the road in September for a co-headline tour with our broseph's City Of Ashes! This will be one of the unsigned tours of the year!"

hammerfall WAS BREAKING NEWS: LIVE LIFE LOUD WITH HAMMERFALL ON 2017 EUROPEAN TOUR: NEW ALBUM ON THE WAY
"We can't wait to get back on stage again to have a gigantic Heavy Metal party every night with all our Templar friends!"

joe perry AEROSMITH GUITARIST JOE PERRY REPORTEDLY SUFFERS HEART ATTACK DURING HOLLYWOOD VAMPIRES GIG
"Thanks to everyone asking about our brother Joe Perry," Alice Cooper wrote. "He is stable right now, with family and is under the best care."

onslaught ONSLAUGHT, BEHOLDER AND ANIHILATED TOUR PROMISES TO BE A TOUR DE FORCE
"By the time we hit the road in November it will be well over two-and-a-half years since we did the last run and we feel the time is now right..."

arw ARW (JON ANDERSON, TREVOR RABIN AND RICK WAKEMAN) ANNOUNCE BAND FOR UPCOMING WORLD TOUR
"I have played with arguably the three greatest bass players ever and I can't wait to play with one of them again!"

marillion MARILLION UNVEIL 'THE NEW KINGS' FROM FORTHCOMING STUDIO ALBUM 'FEAR'
'The New Kings' can also be heard on Marillion's current tour which starts on Monday 11th July in Barcelona...

michael des barres AN AMERICAN WRITER ASKS WHY IT TAKES A BRITISH EX-PAT TO ASK, "WHAT'S GOING ON?" MICHAEL DES BARRES HAS THE ANSWER
This incendiary cover of Marvin Gaye's classic confronts America's issues in an incredibly timely and head-on manner...

freedom call FREEDOM CALL RELEASE A NEW METAL HYMN 'HAMMER OF THE GODS', AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD NOW
The trademark bold vocal harmonies remain. The track is taken from forthcoming opus 'Master Of Light'...

guns n roses STEVEN ADLER JOINS GUNS N' ROSES ON STAGE IN OHIO: FOUR FIFTHS OF 'APPETITE' LINE-UP PLAY TOGETHER FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 1990
"On the drums, you might know this guy. Ladies and gentlemen, Mr Steven Adler..."

ac dc AC/DC BASSIST CLIFF WILLIAMS TO RETIRE AFTER ROCK OR BUST WORLD TOUR: "IT'S BEEN SURREAL"
"AC/DC has been... you know, just... I don't know what else I would wanna do. I love the music and I love playing in the band, and I'm all filled up..."

guns n roses GUNS N' ROSES USE THEIR ILLUSION TO SILENCE THE DOUBTERS WITH US TOUR GOING SO FINE
Axl is clearly in his element on this tour, running across the stage to jump on the monitors mid-song and displaying all the panache of a man completely on top of his game...

stray del bromham STRAY TO ROAM AROUND THE UK ON TOUR INCLUDING A RARE REUNION OF THE ORIGINAL LINE-UP
No need to move a mountain as both Stray and Del Bromham's Blues Devils are on their way to a venue near you...

amorettes THE AMORETTES ANNOY THE NEIGHBOURS WITH RAUCOUS NEW SINGLE
'Let The Neighbours Call The Cops' was co- written by vocalist Gill Montgomery and Black Star Riders front man Ricky Warwick...

eagles of death metal WAS BREAKING NEWS: EAGLES OF DEATH METAL WANT YOU SO BAD ON TWO UK DATES IN AUGUST
This is EODM's first visit to the UK since the band were caught up in the terrible events at The Bataclan Theatre in Paris back in November 2015...

soil SOiL 'SHINE ON' THE UK WITH COMPREHENSIVE TOUR
"We are looking forward to seeing some new places and making some new friends this time around..."

acid reign ACID REIGN GET IN FESTIVE MOOD EARLY WITH SPECIAL GIG ANNOUNCEMENT
'Tis the season to Thrash as Acid Reign team up with Shrapnel with far from obnoxious results...

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN: LEGACY OF THE BEAST MOBILE RPG GAME IS OUT NOW
"We've always wanted to make a quality Maiden mobile game as we think the combination of Eddie and the music is so well suited..."

rick parfitt status quo EXCLUSIVE: STATUS QUO'S RICK PARFITT SEEMS TO BE 'FINE FINE FINE' AS HE IS SPOTTED OUT AND ABOUT
Following the recent health scare a picture has emerged online of him taking a walk in Kingston over the weekend...

bullet for my valentine BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE TO PLAY 'THE POISON' IN FULL FOR THE FIRST EVER TIME
"We promised you something special right? See 'The Poison' played in full for the first time in Manchester! Tickets on sale now here..."

alter bridge WAS BREAKING NEWS: ALTER BRIDGE TO HEADLINE ARENAS ACROSS EUROPE THIS WINTER WITH GOJIRA AND VOLBEAT
This will be their biggest headline tour yet with twenty-four dates across fifteen countries, kicking off on November 4th 2016

the mission WAS BREAKING NEWS: BAUHAUS FRONTMAN PETER MURPHY TO GUEST WITH THE MISSION ON THEIR 30th ANNIVERSARY UK TOUR
"Peter's appearance will help make these shows the special events that we always wanted and hoped they'd be..."

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN ILLUSTRATOR DESIGNS SHIRT FOR ONE DIRECTION'S ZAYN MALIK, MAIDEN LAUNCH THIRD TROOPER BEER AND HI-ON-MAIDEN TO HEADLINE PICCSTOCK
A full-bodied beer using a blend of chocolate and crystal malts to give "a roasted malt and caramel backbone with hints of liquorice and honey"...

bruce dickinson BRUCE DICKINSON TO TAKE PART IN TOP GEAR STYLE CHARITY ROAD TRIP
"The enthusiasm from the group is amazing which will lend itself to making it an unforgettable trip..."

anvil WAS BREAKING NEWS: ANVIL ANNOUNCE UK AND EUROPEAN TOUR FOR OCTOBER/NOVEMBER
Anvil will not only be playing dates in Scotland and Wales but also English towns which rarely see major international artists, such as Huddersfield, Doncaster and Grimsby.

status quo IT'S TIME TO GET 'DOWN DOWN' TO BUTLINS AS SECOND STATUS QUO FAN CLUB CONVENTION IS ANNOUNCED
The weekend will feature live music from ex-Quo drummer John Coghlan and his band with long time friend of the band, Jackie Lynton also scheduled to appear...

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