Camden Rocks Festival – Camden, London – LIVE REVIEW

Mallory Knox, Camden Rocks – Koko, 02.06.2018 Photo Credit: Hayley Smith

Camden Town has been the haven of the others since Pink Floyd played their debut show at the Roundhouse in 1966. It’s venues are host to the best gig’s in the capital all year round but on June 2nd they joined forces for the seventh Camden Rocks Festival.

For one glorious Saturday, Camden Rocks took over more than 20 venues from Crescent Coffee in Mornington Crescent all the way down the high street to The Fiddler’s Elbow in Chalk Farm.
The line up boasted over 200 acts made up of not only rock chart toppers but the most promising newcomers from the city and beyond.

Festivals like Camden Rocks have become one of the most crucial forces in the British music industry due to the spotlight they shine on the venues they inhabit. Locals and regulars to the town had begun to fear for the future of The Good Mixer on Inverness Street since it’s doors closed in January and the site became vulnerable to developers.

Luckily, the new management team has promised to stick to the boozer’s musical roots making it a sheer celebration to watch Marshall Record’s latest signing, Elsewhere, in the main room.

Elsewhere, Camden Rocks – The Good Mixer, 02.06.2018 Photo Credit: Hayley Smith

Discovered by the recently founded label whilst participating in a Milton Keyne’s Battle of the Bands, Elsewhere are at the very beginning of a journey that is sure to be an extraordinary one.

The alt-rock quartet gave a performance far beyond their years with tracks that portray intimate experiences of loss and tragedy. That raw emotion is already being put to good use by vocalist Ethan who has personally encouraged fans struggling with mental health issues to use the band’s Facebook page for support.

It was a promising start to Elsewhere’s career and and the best way to kick off a packed day of rock music.

Over the road the allusive Sleep Token were kicking things off in the appropriately somber Electric Ballroom.

Sleep Token are an entirely anonymous and masked collective of musicians who worship the deity ‘Sleep’ – ‘an ancient being that is given power by those who believe’.

Following a stunning support run on the Holding Absence/Loathe co-headline tour earlier this year, audiences now expect to be captivated by Sleep Token’s approach.

To achieve what Sleep Token are trying to do takes huge attention to detail. Theatrical and dramatic performances have always caught the attention of fans, especially in the metal sphere where the likes of Slipknot and Ghost have become iconic due to their back story.

But today, the attention was lacking. A Nike tick here and a mask’s visible label and barcode there and the whole thing lost it’s panache. It’s exceptional that Sleep Token are trying something different – and there was certainly nothing quite like them on this monster line up – but once you’ve seen them at their best you can easily see when standards have slipped.

Over in Mornington Crescent, KOKO was almost ready for the festival’s biggest names.

Fresh from touring with the sensational Don Broco, The LaFontaines have turned more than a few heads across the UK this year. The Motherwell lads have turned their rock/rap hybrid into a suave artform – switching from brutal riffs to nightclub beats in a split second.

The LaFontaines, Camden Rocks – Koko, 02.06.2018 Photo Credit: Hayley Smith

This former theatre fits The LaFontaines perfectly. There’s a polished and glamorous style to both but every week KOKO descends into one of the filthiest club night’s in the capital.

Eliza and the Bear were another highlight for the KOKO stage this afternoon – and certainly the most upbeat. The London locals have a joyfully infectious sound that sold millions of bottles of cider all over the country.

Eliza and the Bear, Camden Rocks – Koko, 02.06.2018 Photo Credit: Hayley Smith

As much as KOKO was immediately brightened by their set, Eliza and the Bear beg to be seen outside, especially on a cold beer drinking sort of day like today.

Mallory Knox, however, have just the right mood to fit right in. Having completed a hugely successful tour following the departure of vocalist Mikey Chapman, Mallory Knox are in the form of their lives.

Mallory Knox, Camden Rocks – Koko, 02.06.2018 Photo Credit: Hayley Smith

Bassist and now-vocalist Sam Douglas has certainly settled into his new role with grace whilst simultaneously winning the respect and hearts of fans everywhere. The band blistered through four new songs and eight slightly remastered Mallory Knox classics before leaving the stage thoroughly victorious.

Festival appearances like this one are creating more than a little excitement for Mallory Knox’s new album which Douglas assures us all is their best yet. He claims that any hint of lazy song writing has been completely eradicated and that all four remaining band members are working towards a pure Knox record.

At the other end of the high street something at the other end of the rock world was happening. The Urban Voodoo Machine.

The Urban Voodoo Machine, Camden Rocks – Dingwalls, 02.06.2018 Photo Credit: Hayley Smith

The Urban Voodoo Machine are London legends. They characterise themselves as ‘Bourbon Soaked Gypsy Blues Bop’n’Stroll’ but this extravagantly eloquent description still doesn’t really do them justice.

They’re influenced by blues, punkabilly and mariachi (are you still with me?) and have a back story that includes eating parents, the Norwegien army and a cabaret night which you should definitely look into.

Despite the tragedy of losing two band members over current years, The Urban Voodoo Machine are still fighting and tonight they claimed Dingwalls and in the process succeeded in making everybody else look completely fucking boring.

Completely hysterical, entirely unqiue and just a little bit terrifying – these guys were the perfect way to end Camden Rocks.

Right about here we should have been crowded in The Hawley Arms to see the sensational Dead! Unfortunately, Dead! is, well, dead. The boys have decided to call it a day and have cancelled all planned summer festival appearances.

They were hugely missed at this festival, as they will be at many others and forever more. We can’t wait to see what they have planned next.

Camden Rocks proved to be just as packed with highlights as the setlist threatened to be with a genuine mixture of bands AND venues with precisely NO mud, NO overpriced traders and NO sun burn (well a little while we were trekking up and down the high street but that’s ALL).

It’s only festivals like Camden Rocks that are keeping the true music world alive. On behalf of all of the venues, artists and fans that benefit from the extensive hard work: thank you for the celebration.

See our full gallery here

57 comments

  1. I needed to create you one little bit of word to help give many thanks once again just for the exceptional tactics you have contributed on this site. This is certainly open-handed of you to provide unreservedly what exactly many people would have supplied as an e book to earn some profit for their own end, even more so seeing that you could have done it in case you decided. The creative ideas also served to be a great way to be aware that other individuals have similar fervor like my personal own to see somewhat more with respect to this condition. I know there are many more enjoyable moments ahead for individuals who see your blog.

  2. I must get across my respect for your kindness giving support to people that should have guidance on this important topic. Your real commitment to passing the solution all around became extraordinarily beneficial and have usually allowed professionals like me to reach their endeavors. This insightful facts denotes a lot to me and a whole lot more to my mates. With thanks; from all of us.

  3. Thanks for every one of your work on this site. My mom loves doing research and it is simple to grasp why. Most of us learn all concerning the lively form you offer helpful items by means of the website and therefore inspire response from people about this theme while our favorite princess is now discovering a lot. Enjoy the remaining portion of the new year. You are performing a really great job.

  4. I precisely had to thank you very much all over again. I do not know what I would’ve made to happen without those tactics contributed by you relating to such a subject. Entirely was a very hard circumstance in my opinion, however , seeing a skilled form you processed it forced me to weep for happiness. I am just happier for the advice and hope you really know what an amazing job that you are undertaking teaching other individuals thru your websites. I know that you have never got to know any of us.

  5. I wanted to draft you a bit of remark to be able to thank you once again regarding the pleasing knowledge you have shared on this page. It is simply seriously open-handed with people like you in giving extensively all that a lot of people could have marketed for an electronic book to earn some dough for themselves, precisely considering the fact that you could have done it in the event you desired. Those tips also acted as the easy way to understand that someone else have the same zeal similar to my own to figure out more when considering this problem. Certainly there are several more pleasant times ahead for individuals who see your site.

  6. I am only writing to let you understand what a nice discovery my wife’s princess developed visiting your web page. She learned a good number of pieces, including how it is like to possess a wonderful giving character to get other folks quite simply grasp various hard to do matters. You undoubtedly did more than our expectations. Many thanks for churning out the precious, healthy, informative and as well as unique thoughts on the topic to Kate.

  7. My husband and i got so lucky Raymond managed to finish up his basic research via the ideas he got from your own web pages. It’s not at all simplistic to just be freely giving information and facts which often other people may have been trying to sell. We see we have you to give thanks to for that. The most important illustrations you made, the simple site navigation, the friendships your site make it possible to instill – it’s got all astonishing, and it’s making our son and us believe that the subject matter is excellent, which is truly fundamental. Thank you for all the pieces!

  8. I precisely wanted to thank you so much all over again. I do not know the things I would’ve gone through without the type of tactics shared by you directly on this concern. It seemed to be a real terrifying circumstance in my circumstances, however , spending time with this professional tactic you handled it took me to weep over happiness. Now i’m thankful for your help and as well , hope you are aware of a great job that you’re putting in instructing others by way of your web page. Most likely you’ve never come across any of us.

  9. A lot of thanks for all of the labor on this website. My niece really loves setting aside time for investigation and it’s really simple to grasp why. My partner and i hear all regarding the compelling method you provide precious tips and hints through this web site and therefore foster participation from people about this area of interest and our own daughter has been understanding a great deal. Take pleasure in the rest of the year. You are doing a fabulous job.

  10. I and also my buddies ended up checking the excellent tips and tricks from your website then the sudden I had an awful suspicion I had not thanked the site owner for those tips. Most of the women became passionate to learn them and have in effect actually been tapping into those things. Appreciation for actually being quite kind as well as for using varieties of very good guides most people are really wanting to discover. My very own honest apologies for not saying thanks to earlier.

  11. I simply wished to thank you very much once more. I do not know what I could possibly have taken care of in the absence of the entire tips and hints shared by you on that industry. Previously it was a challenging difficulty in my position, however , taking note of a new well-written manner you treated the issue forced me to cry for gladness. Now i’m happy for the help and then pray you are aware of a great job you are putting in instructing other individuals through your blog post. Most probably you have never come across all of us.

  12. I have to show my affection for your kindness for those people that really need guidance on this important content. Your special dedication to getting the message all around has been wonderfully useful and has constantly allowed associates just like me to arrive at their pursuits. Your personal interesting guidelines denotes a whole lot to me and far more to my office colleagues. Best wishes; from everyone of us.

  13. I wanted to write you one tiny note to be able to say thanks over again on your remarkable advice you have shared above. This has been certainly unbelievably open-handed with people like you to convey publicly what exactly a number of people might have distributed for an electronic book to make some dough for themselves, specifically considering that you might have tried it in the event you considered necessary. The concepts as well served as a good way to know that other people online have similar keenness just as my very own to learn more and more on the topic of this matter. I believe there are thousands of more enjoyable situations ahead for individuals that read carefully your blog.

  14. I in addition to my friends came reviewing the best tips and hints found on the website and unexpectedly got a terrible feeling I had not expressed respect to the blog owner for those techniques. My boys became as a consequence glad to study all of them and now have undoubtedly been having fun with them. Thanks for genuinely well helpful as well as for going for this kind of perfect subject matter millions of individuals are really eager to understand about. Our own honest apologies for not expressing appreciation to sooner.

  15. Hmm it appears like your blog ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I wrote and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I as well am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to the whole thing. Do you have any points for beginner blog writers? I’d definitely appreciate it.

  16. Thanks a lot for providing individuals with remarkably wonderful chance to read critical reviews from this site. It can be very awesome and also stuffed with a good time for me personally and my office friends to search your web site nearly 3 times every week to study the latest items you have got. And lastly, I’m so usually pleased for the staggering suggestions you give. Some 1 points in this posting are unquestionably the finest we have ever had.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *