Punk as Fook
The Martini Henry Rifles
Manchester Night & Day Cafe
Hailing from deepest darkest Wales, this is the Martini Henry Rifles first headlining tour in support of their recently released 'Superbastard' album.
On a snowy mid week evening in Manchester there is a surprisingly healthy crowd in the Night & Day. Something tells me though that some of the audience are not expecting what they're about to witness. Two minutes into the band's set & my suspicions are confirmed, faces in the crowd display a full mix of emotion from confusion to horror & even glee. The reason behind this is the MHR's relentless assault on your senses, guitarist & vocalist Cez describes their sound as 'Noisy scum rock' & that's a pretty apt description.
From the outset the MHR's blast your ears with a scything mix of guitars, beefed up bass & hard hitting rhythms (currently supplied by a drum machine). Lyrically your guess is as good as mine as much of it is shouted, although I did manage to catch something along the lines of 'Run Jimmy run, you motherfucker run'. Needless to say it's not the most sensitive of tunes I've heard recently but what a tune it is. The MHR's deliver short sharp shocks to the brain, the audience are caught unawares by the brevity of some of the tracks (most last two minutes or there abouts), they finish as abruptly as they begin & for a while many are not sure what to make of it all.
Sharing guitar & vocal duties is Chris, he walks across the monitors & plays to the crowd but it's not long before the rest of the band follow suit. Bassist Fudge leaves the stage & walks amongst the crowd, even giving his bass to one lucky chap whilst he goes off for a wander backstage. Cez gesticulates & delivers his vocals with a refreshing intensity before Chris tops it all by walking off the stage onto an unsuspecting piano as the set ends in a total sonic frenzy; feedback meets the strobe light & pounding drums coming back on themselves. It's mad, totally mad, twenty minutes after it began it's all over.
The Martini Henry Rifles will blow you away, but then that's their job isn't it?
Slash the Seats