Fiverfest Grand Final, Junction , Cambridge, 22 March 2014

Energetic bands were much in evidence at the Fiverfest grand final. Although a ‘band competition’ it is decided on a public vote, so bring plenty of fans and you win – fair enough I suppose but turning up at the voting booth before your band have actually played seemed to pre-empt the results, like the type of  political election that requires observers (proportional representation and postal votes for the bands? now there is an idea…).

Still, it is probably better than a panel of judges, leave that to television shows…

Winners on the night were Improvised Beach Party with a full mosh pit (new collective noun?) of supporters. They were treated to noisy three-chord riffing, a charismatic lead singer and unrelenting pace for their whole slot. It was a great show-stealing performance even though the sound quality was questionable, everything turned up to maximum resulting in a wall of mushy sound, but who minded?

In second place, also with a good audience response, Motor Tapes were a band of light and shade, edgy guitar effects, bold blocks of sound with and without keyboard, rocking out and slowing down. There was attention to detail evident in a carefully structured set, their frontman exuded confidence and enjoyed a good rapport with the audience.

Under the looming backdrop of the Millers Music Centre logo (retro sixties ‘Battle of the Bands’?) all the bands I saw were a great advert for live guitar based Indie music in Cambridge, played with passion and Loud!


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