ALL AGES 18 - 2nd Anniversary @ Tithe Barn, Carlisle

26th March 2004

Two years ago, a monthly live music event started up, targeting the young age generation, who wouldn't be able to get into many of the other gigs that take place in and around Cumbria. Twenty four months, two venues, seventy bands and seventeen gigs later, the All Ages have reached its second year in existence. This event was also the launching pad for two of today's top local bands - Nush and ctrlaltdelete, as well as featuring signed bands like Opiate and the Naked Apes. The eighteenth All Ages would be hosting two locals and a signed act, and with the good turnout of all those "aged nine to ninety", excitement was definitely in the air.

THE FORGOTTEN NORTH
The lads from Carlisle took to the stage first for the All Agers. This would be their first All Ages for nearly two years, back in the days when the Brickyard was the Richmond Hall and these guys were just starting up. They started the night with a mix of alternative rock with a lot of Muse influence. They got a small crowd gathered in front of them, listening to them play songs from their "Apathy" EP, including "Endless" and their contribution to the Motive Sounds compilation "I Must Admit". They did have a snag at the beginning of the set with some feedback, but improved as the set went along. The reaction from the crowd was fairly good, but although they did liven up the crowd, I think the All Agers wanted to hear some power punk - 8/10!

THE FIGHT
Although they were billed as the headliners, the young teenagers from Dudley in the West Midlands decided to go second, which resulted in a huge rush of people heading towards the front of the Barn. They must have some fans in Carlisle, especially when their EP "Home Is Where The Hate Is" is released on the famous punk label Fat Wreck Chords. They played fast power punk, which had a lot of 80's like punk influence in the set. Course, being the observant man that I am, what was obvious was that their main vocalist/guitarist, K8, is female, but she seemed to be sporting a star earring that must have been nicked from Pat Butcher's collection - but it suited her! K8 said she was not feeling well, but this didn't tear the set up at all, with songs played from their EP, including "Revolution Calling", "Fish Gang" and "Forgotten Generation". The crowd gave a big response and lots of skanking and moshing was taking place - so much that a speaker was tipping from side to side! They got the crowd alive and kicking (literally!) and this should have been a good warm up for their big US tour next month - 9/10!

SHOES ON BACKWARDS
Although not advertised as the closing band, time for the headliners! This band's resume has been growing a lot over the last couple of months with a new EP out, recently supporting ska/punk outfit Jesse James and are gearing up to support The Dammed, [spunge] and Not Katies at the Punk Weekend in Whitehaven. Now they can say they were "supported" by the Fight! Anyway, the Whitehaven lads took to the stage and played modern punk, which was a bit different to the Fight. They played various songs from EP, including "In The Shape Of Things To Come" and "................" (although they changed the title to a quote from the 11th Best British Sitcom, Father Ted), as well as covering the Black Sabbath classic "Paranoid". They brought their following with them from Whitehaven - but mixing with them were the regular All Agers and all gave a good response to the set. The set ended with the band letting off a couple of party cannons, which shot out confetti. This could have been a good way to upstage the Fight, if they went on before then. But we shall never know! - 8/10!

OVERALL
Pretty good night of punk/alt rock music. The Fight showcased their West Midlands-like attitude, as well as their range of punk. Shoes On Backward ended the night with a bang (literally and otherwise!), and the Forgotten North started the night well. The next gig I'm heading to, is at the Brickyard - and it'll start in... 10 minutes time!

Until then...

Stevo!