Camden Rock Festival is an ambassador to bands that have made their mark in time, along with ones that are breaking through. Saying that, the festival also gives punters the chance to venture out to venues they may not know exist.
Saturday the 17th December, at the Horse Hospital, Proud Galleries in Camden. Hidden amongst a vibrant part of London. A cocoon of stalls embraces the scenery. Who doesn’t love a stall, stalls engulfed with antiques, clothes and one that sells “bang bang chicken”. You can hear this fella’s deep singing voice chiming along to the tunes of the day. This is Camden. Camden itself is a music venue mixed with a metropolis of culture. Today is the Christmas All Dayer.
Punk rock three-piece Lupus Dei are dressed all in white. They smash their way through a thirty minutes set like Alex and the droogs of Clockwork Orange. Lupus Dei have a good amount of people enjoying their creation, wearing Werewolves T-shirts, which is good to see. Their last track of the afternoon is reminiscent of Warren Zevon’s “Werewolves of London”. Oh, woooo!
Up next are London based three-piece garage rock band, King Korea. A set of blistering guitars with unique vocals, while colourful paper’s blown into the air. There is too much strobe lighting for someone with delicate eyes like myself.
A band making their London debut are on next. Five guys from Finland announce to the crowd who they are and what they do. The people in the audience chill at the back on comfy chairs. The band is Blind Channel. They tell us they make angry aggressive pop and here they are, in Camden. Their exuberance is addictive, their sound is fresh, and I enjoyed every f**kin’ minute of this set. Watch out for these guys.
The Anita Chellamah Band are on, an old-school riff fuelled rock set that bleeds rock history. Guitarist Timo Kaltio is part of rock royalty, as a member of “Problems?” Timo later joined forces with lead vocalist Anita Chellamah, bassist Dave Tregunna and Terry Chimes and created Cherry Bombz. They split in the 80s, moving to other aspects of life, in music. Currently Timo Kaltio is not only a member of this band, but also with those south London cats The Peckham Cowboys. Dave Tregunna is of punk royalty, being the bassist of Sham 69. Anita Chellamah moved in another direction of life. After years, away from the scene, Anita Chellamah came back and teamed up with her old friends. This band began with Terry Chimes, the original drummer of The Clash, Cherry Bombz and current member The Crunch. But tonight, those sticks are held by Alex Kaltio, son of axe man, Timo. On stage this collective force is all held together by Lynette Dundas on backing vocals.
Riffs blast around the gallery, showing their love of performing. The lyrics written about life experience. Lead vocalist Anita Chellamah goes straight into a Cherry Bombz tune, “100 Degrees in the Shade.” After, Anita tells us some of her tracks back then were written during dark times in her past. But she still smiles, the band still enjoy. The collective musicians continue to beam.
The set features old-school tracks and new ones. “Blinded by Love”, “Don’t Know”, “A Thousand Moons” and “Take Cover”. Anita Chellamah tells us the director of the “Give me the Answer” music video is here. She thanks them wholeheartedly, the band then enter the realm of said tune.
Next a favourite of mine, “Plaything” from the time of Motley Crue and Poison putting out ballads about love and all that. This track for me sounds like it is from the other side, basically telling Brett and Tommy to get lost, I don’t want to be your plaything. “I’m not a prize for your friends to see”. The set comes to an end this evening… sorry afternoon with “I Won’t Run” leading to a few shouting out “Encore, Encore”…but it didn’t happen, due to time restrictions.
Seeing friends together in a band, reigniting the love of their passion. I love watching musicians who look as if they love what they’re doing. Today, I think everyone in the gallery saw a group which does love what they do. Showing that the band’s love shines bright, for a religion that Hendrix called Music.
Lupus Dei: facebook
The Anita Chellamah Band: facebook