Kick Out The Jams took place last Saturday in a hidden London gem; 229 Great Portland Street is an underground venue encompasing a large main room and a smaller second room as well as assosciated band/press/food areas. Arriving at the venue the streets around were filled with rock and metal fans. There was black, black and more black, metal, dreads and pretty much everything you'd expect to see at a metal festival; but not a common sight in the middle of London! Passers by were clearly intrigued with a lot of stares and a few comments - some implying they were a tad scared! Little did they know that some of the nicest people you'll find were congregating inside for 9 hours of immense rock.

With 16 bands across 2 stages you'd usually expect some ups and downs, but it's a testament to the organisers that there was not a single bad set through the night, in fact everyone was on top form with crowds ammassing for each set. Alli Hodge (organiser) has an eye for talent and has the knack for scheduling acts to ensure that the crowd are kept entertained from start to end.

From the start the 2nd stage commanded a decent crowd that just grew as the night progressed. As the main stage opened the crowd just seemed to keep growing and the chatter everywhere was about the high quality of the bands on offer.

R13's night kicked off by witnessing a strong set by Colchester boys Day of the Sirens in the second room. Self proclaimed as being 'a bit light for the day' they held their own with a strong presence and exciting energy. [keep an eye out for the full set review]

Neverborn were large, loud and full of life. A massive depth of sound filled the 2nd room; and they looked damn good doing it. They're a band who are made for a big crowd and witht a small crowd they started slow, but once the crowd ammassed they came into their own and showed just how strong they are. 10/13

Opening the main stage were The Spinde Sect. Dual rappers filled the stage with their presence while funky grooves complemented rolling beats and the band moved from smooth slinking into energetic bouncing thoughout the songs. 12/13

Imicus followed with their immense sound. Lead by Miller's deep soulful voice and complemented by intense powerful music they took the room to another level. 12/13

Back on the 2nd stage Aghast had the crowd watching intently. A good portion of the room had heads banging and fists pumping while the rest nodded to the beats. With sweat streaming and voices straining they fought the heavy air in the room and raised their sound. They worked hard but ultimately sounded a bit rough 9/13

Hard rockers Starseed have never put a foot wrong at a gig and their set on the main stage was no exception. Flawless vocals and a stage simply oozing with passion and energy they once again wowed the crowd with their sheer talent and passion. 13/13

Back on the 2nd stage Spirytus showed they are a band that thrives on audience participation and luckily they had it tonight. The 2nd room followed their every move and danced non stop to their funk metal beats. [keep and eye out for the full set review]

Filling in for vocalist Kerstin who's off having a baby, iMMa was the perfect complement to Senser's mixed rap/melodic style. They had the crowd going mental while they took control of the main stage. iMMa and frontman Heitham played off each other's energy while the rest of the band were super laid back and cool. 13/13

Breed 77 suffered from techincal difficulties which really slowed down the flow of their set on the main stage, and resulted in some improvising. They didn't let it faze them and the songs were super tight and engaging. Unfortunately the technical difficulties meant we got a severly reduced set. 10/13

And finally to headliners ill Nino. Delays during the day meant they started a full hour late at 2 minutes to midnight. But the fans were ready and waiting and lapped up every second of their stellar performance. [keep an eye out for the full set review]

It was a great end to a great night for this writer; the festivities continued on into the early hours with DJ's pumping the tunes and from all accounts there was not a disappointed person in the place. Kick Out The Jams is a stellar festival for rock/metal fans and we'll be looking forward to the next one!