Sunkfest 2012 Review

This year Sunk Fest celebrated it's fifth birthday in great style. As always showcasing the best in local talent and national bands alike, with a diverse mix of rock bands. From ska/punk/gypsy/hip-hop (I know right) to doom/thrash/metalcore, there was something for everyone. 

Kicking off proceedings this year with his acoustic renditions of songs that you just wouldn't dare cover, was Trash. After snapping a g-string (oo err) during his first song, a lovely curse-coated cover of the Young Ones themetune, Trash returned with a set that got all the crowd singing. Seeing a group of metalheads singing the likes of Take That, Lady Gaga and Carly Rae Jepson is quite a comical experience. Trash also roped in a couple of friends to share vocal duties and in all they played a great set.

Local barfly Trash doing his thing.

Next were Downfall, mixing doom and thrash elements with metalcore. These guys play very loud, very heavy, but sadly for them, and most bands on the day, it was a mostly sit-down crowd. An all too familiar scene in Hull at the moment. Saying that, two 'old dogs' showed us young 'uns how it's done, by starting up the headbanging and in turn throughout the day they did build a small group. Good on yer Andy and Shaun! 

The next act were the winners of the Public Vote, Beware The Wolf. Having not heard their stuff and going by the name only, I was expecting a hardcore band, so you can imagine my surprise, and delight, when they kicked off their hard rock set. With Lizzy-esque duel guitar riffs and confident stage presence, they played a great half hour set. Ending their set with their take on Steppenwolf's standard 'Born To Be Wild', but I felt as though Joe's vocals were too similar to Glamour of the Kill to sing Steppenwolf. All in all, a good set.

Next were three heavier bands, to try and pick up the crowd and get them moving, Fools To Favour, XIII and Mitzi's Revenge. Since their inception, Fools to Favour and Mitzi's Revenge have fast become two of the strongest hardcore bands in the area and with the strength of the sets shown at Sunk, then the future is set to be good for them both. Although it's not really something I would normally choose to listen to, I found myself enoying them both a lot.

 This was the first time I had seen Hull's thrash heroes, XIII as a three piece and they showed that less is more. Using some sort of metal wizardry they seem to have created a bigger sound with the loss of a member. I was looking forward to seeing the Sunk reaction to their well known track Fuckin' Scum, however they decided to end their set with the brutal 'Triskaidekaphobia' a song that I found catchier than bird flu and was belting out long after I first heard it. I don't care how they've done it - i love it! 

XIII's James and Dan 

After these had built up a few headbangers at the front, Leeds based heavy rockers Asomvel took to the stage. Then the crowd died down again, perhaps through tiredness or through fear of being blown away by Asomvel's up-to-eleven attitude. Either way Asomvel did what they do best, stroll on stage, smash your eardrums to hell and back, and calmly stroll off again. I'll definitely be making an effort to catch this tyrant of a threepiece again.

As darkness fell, the crowd rose, put on their dancing shoes and had a damn good time. Reason? Counting Coins had took to the stage. With a genre like ska/punk/gypsy/hip-hop, I expected one hell of a show, and I was not disappointed. CC's ethos is simple, jump around and have a damn good time. Check out the video for their track What Gives You The Right, and then get to one of their shows for the full hype. Only a band this epic that could get away with brandishing their trumpets at a metal festival. Yes we meant that exactly how it reads. 

Counting Coins and a lot of drunk Yorkshire folk - recipe for a damn good time

Alt. Rockers Skarlett Riot were next, their sound has become a lot heavier than the last time I saw them, supporting Taking Dawn many moons ago. With Chloe making guys drool and Dan, Tom and Luke supplying a punk attitude. SR provide a refreshing take on the female fronted rock band formula. They performed an array of tracks, including ones from their current EP, 'Villian'. It's been a rollercoaster of a year for the band, and they deserve every little bit of attention they've recieved. With killer hooks, a no-nonsense, no-bullshit attitude, but still enough modesty for the rest of us to relate to, Skarlett Riot are set to hit hard very soon and there doesn't seem to be anything slowing them down. 

Skarlett Riot's Dan and Tom rocking out 

Headlining this year were british metal titans, Beholder. Having seen them tear up SOS Fest in Manchester, i was pleased to see them get an even better reception at Sunk. Mass amounts of headbanging, circle pits and even a wall of death! The highlight of their set for me though was their cover of Redneck by Lamb Of God, which Simon dedicated to Randy Blythe and all those who supported him. During Redneck Simon even threw his mic to someone in a LoG shirt to sing a few lines. Beholder really are an awesome live band who do everything for the fans, hell yeah!

Closing up the event were the honorary party band, Scissor Kick, fronted by Chunk. Covering a great collection of rock hits, including 'Here I go Again', 'Don't Believe a Word' and of course 'Gay Bar', Scissor Kick got everyone singing along. During their version of 'God Gave Rock 'n' Roll To You' almost everyone in the crowd invaded the stage, including me, Danni and Tom, though admittedly the night was a bit hazy by this point. By 1am the stage was silent, but that didn't by any means show that the festivities were over. Everyone vacated to their designated partying locations  and continued to drink, dance and eventually drop until the sun rose. 

Sunk Fest really is the ultimate party; great bands all day, great people to hang out with, and an amazing atmosphere to boot. Over the years Chunk and Law's brainchild has fast become a standard calendar event for the Hull rock scene, and with the inclusion of merch this year it can only get bigger and better. So get there next year, and be a part of it!

The Sunkfest stage, made from the blood, sweat and beers of the music scene, for the for music scene.

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