The Bellrays. The Cluny. 23.1.2020.

On a night of deliberately intense performances, it’s North Easterner’s The Continental Quilts who open the evening with a bang, blasting through 12 songs in 35 minutes in a set shining with melody filled garage rock.  The Hives esque stomper ‘C’mon (get back)’ stands out for its guitar pop power sound, whilst ‘Super Yob’ provides an opportunity for the band to rejoice in Who rock shapes and posturing.  Setting a high bar they’re followed by Los Pepes who cut the pop back slightly and provide an intensity direct from the 1978 stylings of various remnants of punk including the frankness of The Ramones and The Clash, with moments of melodic punk circa The Undertones.  Moving through various styles of punk/garage rock, it’s their closer ‘Action’ which amalgamates all styles together and is performed as it were their last song ever; they’re a headline act themselves.  If The BellRays are nervous about maintaining the evening’s level of the performance then you certainly wouldn’t guess it as they take over the evening from the word go with their blend of punk/funk/rock/soul.  On sensational form tonight the Ray’s blister from the start; highlights ‘I can’t hide’ and ‘Every chance I get’ standing out for somehow joining gospel with blues with punk.  We saw three terrific performances tonight by bands who mean it, man.