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As part of the HMV Next Big Thing series of gigs in London showcasing the finest of what's out there, and more importantly what Joe Public are missing out on, tonight sees two bands that I've already seen over the last year and I'm back here again tonight because I know I'm in for a good evening of not only great but original rock music at it's finest.


The Trews are already a household name in their native Canada with twelve top ten hits already under their belts. It's no surprise to see a bevvy of Canadian beauties down the front in sheer disbelief that they are seeing the Nova Scotia heroes so up close and personal.

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Playing a short set from their first four albums, the band rocked harder than when I've previously seen them, with only the single and title track of their latest opus 'Hope And Ruin' relying on an acoustic guitar from Colin MacDonald. His brother John-Angus MacDonald is well up for it, cranking out the riffs and holding the six string above his head.

'Poor Ol' Broken Hearted Me' rocks like seventies Aerosmith whilst the single 'Hold Me In Your Arms' would be more familiar to fans of Nickleback. The Trews certainly lived up to the billing of the night... Next Big Thing?... They already are in some parts. Wake up Britain.

the trews

Macclesfield is not very famous for producing the world's finest rock bands but that will soon change when the world finally gets to hear The Virginmarys. A power trio with Beatles and Nirvana influences which can clearly be heard in their sound.

The power and fericious energy the band pour into their set is highly impressive. Bassist Matt Rose plays with his head slouched down pounding his instrument with a thundering attack. Drummer Danny Dolan must go through a new drum kit at every show as not since Keith Moon has someone so animatic been on the stool, often standing for maximum effect and using the gong for 'Bang, Bang, Bang'. By the end of the show Dolan's hands were bleeding and no doubt covered in splinters.

Singer guitarist Cooly stands behind the mic, unaware of the commotion going on around him and looking like a stoned Marc Bolan.

the trews

The Virginmarys haven't even released a full length album yet but I can't wait to hear it when they do one. 'Just A Ride' and 'Portrait Of Red' are just a couple of gems I already know but there was a whole arsenal of gems tonight... Next Big Thing... They made a bloody big noise not heard since Nirvana.

The Trews

The World I Know
Not Ready To Go
She's So Leaving
Hope And Ruin
Poor Ol' Broken Hearted Me
Misery Loves Company
Hold Me In Your Arms

The Virginmarys

King Of Conflict
Takin' The Blame
You've Got Your Money I've Got My Soul
Just A Ride
Out Of Mind
Lost Weekend
Keep Me On The Run
Believe In Me
Dressed To Kill
Portrait Of Red
Bang, Bang, Bang

Off To Another Land



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