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No Sinner: The Borderline, London
Tuesday 25th October 2016

liz medhurst
Liz Medhurst

no sinner

There are no shortage of blues rock bands around and every now and then one leaps ahead of the pack and marks their identity on you with such force that the impact remains long after the smudged ink from door stamps has washed off. No Sinner are one of these.

According to my social media feeds it appeared that most of London were over in Shepherd's Bush for the spectacular all-star celebration of Jack Bruce, and I would be lying if I didn't admit to travelling here this evening feeling a pang of envy at missing out.

Tonight's performance however had all the ingredients for a great night, put together in the right order and baked to optimum satisfaction levels.

The evening got off to a strong start with Sheffield quartet Bang Bang Romeo, whose heavy edge with a soulful vibe kept the crowd's attention. With lead singer Anastasia Walker's powerful voice, and the 60s inspired soundtrack, this may not have been a million miles away from the result of Grace Slick and Mama Cass cloned and sent out to gig with Hendrix. An impressive opening act.

no sinner

No Sinner started with a bang, entering to the dying strains of 'Ace Of Spades', launching straight into 'Be My Saviour' and keeping the energy dialled up for the rest of the night.

Skilled frontwoman Colleen Rennison stunned with the depth and passion of her voice which belied her years and transported us to a land of heartache and whisky-soaked road trips.

Whether giving us the defiance of 'All Woman' or the more traditional stylings of 'Work Song', Colleen was quality through and through, is completely the real deal and oh my god - that voice...

The band were tight, the Hammond suitably oozy and the whole thing was underpinned with a hardness and grit that balanced the rich vocal tones impeccably. They are coming to the end of a gruelling European tour, promoting current album 'Old Habits Die Hard' and appear to be natural road dogs. No sign of flagging here.

Essentially the songs can be divided into soulful slow blues or shouty rock, sometimes the two together in the same song, but it was never once boring. More helpings of the same dish were eagerly consumed, like eating a whole cheesecake, but without the regret.

The crowd were noticeably captivated and Colleen and co had a literal magnetic effect, as people naturally and gradually moved closer and closer to the stage as the set progressed. This current line-up gel brilliantly, and this added a further edge to 'Stuck In The Middle', a very direct song about the break up and fallout of the previous line-up.

Even with all this emotion and the proliferation of tortured rip-your-heart-out torch songs, things never got maudlin as the underlying beat and a down and dirty rhythm section ensured the dominance of strength and power.

What a great rock'n'roll band. Talent and dedication to the cause paid off tonight and ensured there were no complaints from me about where I spent my evening.


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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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