Drenge: Norwich Sound and Vision festival – live reviewDrenge

Norwich Sound and Vision Festival

11th October 2013

There’s two of them up there.

One is hammering the drums with a real raw power but also a subtly brilliant array of shape shifting rhythms whilst the other is cranking up a brilliant skree of guitar filth- that sort of feedback drenched scuzz that Poison Ivy dealt in the early Cramps whilst he sings these great tunes over the top in an instantly addictive and great voice.

The whole set teeters on chaos, there is a mosh pit a stray can flies across the room and hits the singer in the mouth which only cranks the energy and intensity even higher.

In normal times this kind of brilliant filth would be getting routinely ignored by the coward mainstream but the band’s debut album is really beginning to sell out there and it’s only the timid world of radio that is preventing them from becoming the avalanche huge band of the moment.

We truly live in thrilling musical times when a band like this can be a contender and for Drenge the story has only just begun.

A raw power so life changing that is caused Louder Than War mate Tom Watson to quit his high flying Labour Party role after he saw them at Glastonbury this year.

Drenge are totally where it’s at.
Everyone keeps asking ‘whens rock n roll going to come back’, ‘where is it’ – for those that still care it’s always here, hidden away on the fringes but tonight it’s everywhere and as Drenge hit the stage it’s being cranked into a new high, a new kinda kick.Drenge: Norwich Sound and Vision festival – live review
The two brothers from Castelton near Sheffield are aged 19 and 21 and have somehow reinvented the wheel yet again and then set fire to it and then cranked it up and stomped on it and then gone crazy with a set that defies gravity and boring stuff like logic.

This is pure rock n roll

This is fucking brilliant.

In the tidal wave of beautiful noise the two brothers face each other on the stage, Eion Loveless swings his guitar dredging out glorious electric filth whilst younger brother Rory hammers the drums as the songs tumble down in a thrilling set that resurrects rock n roll again and proves what a potent and powerful force it can still be in the right hands.

The guitar drones feedback and waves of beautiful noise kinda like primetime Cramps but redefined for a new generation with down at home, very British lyrics sung with a great velvet voice as Eion stands stage sideways locking on the laser to his little kid brothers frenetic yet totally on the groove drumming.

Somehow in 2013 the two brothers have rediscovered the mojo. They make great wild noisy music with cutting and funny lyrics and with the same raw power that was once felt by the Stooges- they are that good good that we can talk about the holy names of primal rock n roll, in the same breadth, as almost their creative contemporaries because the pair of them on the stage tonight totally understood the noisy power of rock n roll- the rumbling back beat, the filthy guitars and greats songs which never sound the same twice as they coax every sound and equation possible from the mini two piece line up.

This is the R n R minimalism of the White Stripes, the filth of the Stooges, the doomed trip of the beautiful Nirvana, the sex beat of the Gun Club and the feral rush of the early Cramps sieved up as a very British rush complete with a Sheffield accent, rainy day anoraks and stamp collector underground Brit eccentric and it’s the band of the moment.

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Award winning journalist and boss of Louder Than War. In a 30 year music writing career, John was the first to write about bands such as Stone Roses and Nirvana and has several best selling music books to his name. He constantly tours the world with Goldblade and the Membranes playing gigs or doing spoken word and speaking at music conferences.


  1. Quite excited when I read this so I checked out their videos on youtube where I found a very polished almost sanitised hard rock sound which was disappointing – I guess live they must have more ‘brilliant filth’.

    If you want punky ‘R n R minimalism’ then you need to search out the Subtitles


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