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Elle Hudson

elle hudson

badlands bandits

Never let it be said that the West Country, better known for glorious beaches, cider drinking and pasties, is the backwaters for rock music 'cos let me tell you, as a life-long rock fan and scribbler of words, our home-grown bands know how to rawwwk up there with the best of 'em!

The venue for this gig is The Wharf, arguably among the most respected and popular music venues in the region and everyone and their dogs want to play there. It's geared more to staging the bigger established tribute acts but has become an increasingly popular stop off over the last few years for bands like UFO, Imelda May, Fish and Joe Bonamassa.

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So for Badland Bandits to be headlining the venue under their own steam is a major step up for a band more used to the pub gigs.

First up was support band Sleaze from Plymouth who really are the ultimate Spinal Tap tribute band, wonderfully over the top whilst becoming literal caricatures of all that was excessive about the 1980s Rock God era of Bon Jovi, Poison, Guns N Roses, Def Leppard and Whitesnake etc; quite simply, what's not to love?!

I don't know if any of the Sleaze boys write their own music but if they did it's a nigh on certainty they'd come up with their very own 'Suck My Love Pump!'

The band are immensely popular throughout the local pub scene for good reason; faced with a packed venue full of people ready for some serious good time 'rawwwwking', they can be relied on to turn the power and the sleaze right up to No 11. Here they were truly on fire but it somehow doesn't work without a baying crowd so shame on sleaze lovers for not making it out to the gig, it really was their loss.

And then we had Badland Bandits and their set actually surprised me. Having not seen them for a couple of years they've evidently come a long way and honed their craft quite remarkably with some incredibly mature guitar playing that belies their young years, not to mention Adam Vickery's strong presence as an immensely confident singer.

To encounter such a young band writing their own music and lyrics with a real raw passion to succeed in the industry today is quite humbling, so easy would it be to just become another covers band playing the same old tunes.

Quickly rising up as one strong contender for bigger and better things the Bandits have developed an array of songs with rock solid grooves, good melodies and hooks on which to hang your coat. They are definitely a band on a mission.

A wide ranging self-penned repertoire ranging from Motley Crue-esque fist punching rockers like 'Scream N Shout' to slower softer moments like 'Those Eyes' and the wonderful radio friendly 'Lost In Berlin', a firm fan favourite, the BB's are heading in the right direction.

It's easy to see why one producer they worked with proclaimed: "If AC/DC heard this band they'd shit themselves!"

I believe what AC/DC would probably do is shake each of them by the hand and say: "Thank fucking God, with bands like the Badland Bandits coming up through the ranks the future or rock and roll is in safe hands!"




Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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