The Uprising Tour at The Joiners on Friday 30th March by Sam Skilton
Mod is back, and it’s back in style! British guitar music made its return last March when Southampton’s award-winning music venue The Joiners kicked off The Uprising Tour.
Set up by Dave Wyburn, a mod himself once upon a time, the tour brings a mix of the nation’s best young and unsigned bands together to play at various venues across the country during a tough time for guitar music.
Right at the centre of the tour is Bristol band Marmalade Sky, who combine an Oasis-esque live swagger with some belting rock and roll tunes. Originally formed by guitarist Luke Mayo, bassist Mike Wilcox and Jamie Ham on drums, they have evolved from a three-piece who covered songs by The Who into one of the country’s most exciting up and coming bands. The addition of rhythm guitarist George Shelton and lead vocalist Dan Warren complete the line-up.
“The tour was our manager Dave Wyburn’s idea,” said Warren, “He’s got a real passion to try and bring British guitar music back through. He’s got a lot of contacts – he was a mod back in the day and makes scooters and stuff like that – he loves it. It makes sense really for similar bands around the country to join forces, and say come on, same type of music, same interests, same genre, same heroes and passions, let’s play together and unite.”
Wyburn, who has previously worked with the likes of Oasis front-man Liam Gallagher and his Pretty Green clothing label, also organised a photo-shoot for the early afternoon at the Old Walls by Southampton Docks which brought the bands together for the first time and featured the two main scooters from cult 1979 mod film Quadrophenia.
Marmalade Sky were joined by three other bands, and all four of the acts were in top form on the night. First of all there was Watford’s The Spitfires and lead singer Billy O’Sullivan who could easily have been mistaken for a young Paul Weller. Next up were The Town, a three piece from Wolverhampton who again bared something of a resemblance to the resonance and energy of the great mod band The Jam.
It was interesting that Marmalade Sky guitarist Luke Mayo had spoken earlier in the afternoon about the time he once met Wolfmother lead singer Andrew Stockdale after a gig, because the Australian rock band’s influence was certainly reflected by the powerful guitar riffs in their live performance. They showcased the three tracks which feature on their January EP “Time to Listen” to the crowd at The Joiners, as well as old favourites “British Boy” and “I’m A Fool”.
Finally, headlining the night was Southampton’s very own The Queue who brought an army of fans aptly named, the “Queue Army”. Again they performed with the vigour and passion which proved to be a common theme on the night – qualities which demonstrate that it certainly is not yet time to give up hope on British guitar music.
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