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Photos by Kay Oakley


So here it is, Merry Christmas, everybody's having fun, look to the future now, it's only just begun... Despite the fact that Noddy Holder kicked off his platform boots and hung up his mirrored hat for the final time in 1992, closely followed by fellow songwriter and bassist Jim Lea, no one can really blame super yob guitarist Dave Hill and drummer Don Powell for wanting to keep the Slade flame burning alive.

deep purple

Of course Slade without Noddy will never be the same - how can it be? However the legacy and the music lives on. There are many fans who were too young to see Slade originally who are happy to settle for second best and many older hardcore Slade fans who just want to keep on rocking here tonight and hear anthems that influenced the whole American Metal scene.

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It's a fact - if it wasn't for Slade, there would be no Kiss, Twisted Sister or Motley Crue. Slade were the biggest selling single act in the seventies, selling over six and a half million records and also being the first band to have three singles go straight in at the number one spot.

Their sixth and final number one, 'Merry Xmas Everybody', has became a mainstay on the airwaves every year and is now very much a part of Christmas itself.


Tonight's show is all in the name of charidee mate, with proceeds going to the Lord's Taverner's Trust which gives young people, particulary those with special needs, a sporting chance. The evening is hosted by former Radio 1 DJ Mike Read.

The fans are in festive spirit with many wearing Santa hats and there also some great colourful Slade lookalikes in the audience making for a very party atmosphere. Just as well, as the performance is being filmed for a future DVD.

Stepping into the shoes of Noddy is Mal McNulty, who has been with Slade since 2005. McNulty is a former member of the German rock band Hazzard and has also been a former member of a later day Sweet. McNulty has a snarling gravelly voice similar to Brian Johnson of AC/DC or Dan McCafferty of Nazareth and tonight, being small in height and with a flat cap on above his side burns, looked like Ronnie Corbett in the 'Fork Handles' sketch.


The packed audience is behind the band from the start. Not just relying on their golden hits, it was good to see Slade open up with 'We'll Bring The House Down', soon followed by 'Lock Up Your Daughters' both hits later on in their career in the eighties.

Dave Hill is lapping it up, often standing atop the moniters for all to see. The first few lines of 'Everyday' were sung by bassist John Berry who then let the Slade crowd do the rest. Berry would later play the violin for a stomping 'Coz I Luv You'.

Much later rarities were thrown into the set too, including the Dave Hill penned 'Red Hot'. This rocker was originally the b-side of Slade's last single 'Universe'. 'Hear Ya Callin'' was another rocker written with Don Powell in 2002. Naturally it was those top ten greats that went down the best with 'The Bangin' Man' and 'Mama We're All Crazee Now' putting this party into overdrive.


Having not really enjoyed it first time round, 'My Oh My', was a master stroke live with scarves and voices held aloft and do I really need to tell you how fantastic 'Cum On Feel The Noize' and 'Merry Xmas Everybody' was? You don't belong on this planet if you can't stomp and sing along to these tracks.

Yes Slade made some big noize tonight. I got down and got with it. Keep on rocking Slade!

Set list:

We'll Bring The House Down
Take Me Bak 'Ome
Lock Up Your Daughters
Far Far Away
Look Wot U Dun
Red Hot
Coz I Luv You
Run Runaway
M'hat M'coat
Hear Ya Callin'
Gudbuy T'Jane
The Bangin Man
Mama Weer All Crazee Now
Get Down Get With It

My Oh My
Cum On Feel The Noize
Merry Xmas Everybody



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