At one thirty on the final day of Fort Fest, Fahran launched into their set. The hard rock band had elements of Guns and Roses and Airbourne. Long hair and guitars whirled around the stage as they ripped through their riff laden songs giving the stage a vintage old-school feel.
Autumn Ruin were straight after and had more obviously modern influences. This was shown by their choice of delayed guitar effects that sometimes gave an almost synthesiser effect. The audience enjoyed the big sound that the delay created along with their soaring vocal harmonies.
THECITYISOURS, probably the heaviest band on the bill, followed. They expressed a concern that the crowd might not be receptive to their heavier sound. But the audience were quickly won over by their mix of heavy hard hitting verse and instrumental and almost pop choruses.
Phoebe and Jay played in the Tavern Stage at Three o’clock. Jay had played on main stage with Kingdom Keys the day before. The duo had an almost west coast of the USA feel with elements of the Eagles, Crosby Still and Nash and Fleetwood Mac in their songs and in Phoebe’s haunting vocal performance.
Phoenix Calling, whose PR were the lovely people promoting the whole festival, walked out on main stage full confidence. A fairly local band, they had a good response from the crowd treating them to a melodic form of alternative rock. The set along with the festival was a great success.
The Treatment were another band from Cambridge but a band that has much more obvious influences. AC/DC and Airbourne run through their blood. The audience soaked up the heavy riffs and crunching overdrive that pervaded their set.
It was Young Guns who headlined and rounded off the festival and they undoubtedly had the largest crowd of the weekend. Having come straight from Warped Tour USA, Gustav the lead singer had developed a slight American accent that could be heard announcing the songs. Young Guns played a mixture of the older hits and also treated the crowd to new teasers from the new album out later this month. They could have been forgiven for using this as a warm up gig but they threw themselves into the set, stating their happiness to be back in England and playing under the cover of darkness again.
Overall, despite this being the first Fort Fest, the festival was incredibly well run. The line-up was superb and the sound heightened the bands’ performances. The staff and crowds were friendly and the surroundings fantastic. Roll on 2017!