Year end time, 2014 was an interesting year music-wise, with some incredible highs including Team CB’s inaugural trip to France for a festival which features heavily in our end of year thoughts. So without further ado, here’s my top gigs of the year…
Reliving the psychedelic heydey of the late, great Robert Calvert the Warlords treated a packed Bannerman’s Bar in Edinburgh to an evening that included Captain Lockheed And The Starfighters and Hawkwind’s Hall Of The Mountain Grill in full.
9: Hellyeah Live at Bloodstock
To be honest the only reason I ended up watching Hellyeah at Bloodstock was to get away from Emperor on the main stage. Judging by the rammed tent I wasn’t the only one who had this idea.
8: Hang The Bastard Live at Sonisphere
And THAT ladies and gentlemen is how you cure a hangover. The Bohemia Tent at Soni was THE place to be in 2014, and Hang The Bastard’s early doors slot was one of the picks of the weekend.
7: Bad Religion Live at Download
The most anticipated set of the Download weekend didn’t disappoint, with an epic singalong to the LA veterans punk rock songs providing the highlight of an otherwise mostly forgettable Download 2014.
6: Airbourne Live in Glasgow
Airbourne are always good value, but of late they are threatening to break through to genuine heavy metal hugeness. They may have “only” been supporting Black Stone Cherry, but next time you see them playing arenas it’ll be Airbourne’s name at the top of the bill
5: Michael Schenker’s Temple Of Rock live in Glasgow
Now THAT’S what you call a supergroup. Temple Of Rock finds Schenker surrounded by a stellar group including Doogie White and Wayne Findlay along with ex-Scorpions Herman Rerebell and Francis Buchholz. This was an unforgettable gig.. when a set opens with Doctor Doctor you know you’re in for a treat !!
4: Evil Scarecrow Live at Bloodstock
Surreal, incredible, awesome. Evil Scarecrow drew a crowd that rivaled the main stage headliners at BOA, and the sight of 10,000 people scuttling left and right will not soon be forgotten.
3: Anthrax Live at Sonisphere
This was the big one, Anthrax in the Bohemia tent playing Among The Living in full. TeamCB, front and centre were well and truly caught in a mosh. Going to take something special to top that.
TeamCB didn’t need much of a discussion to decide the best festival of 2014, Hellfest in France was three days of awesome that knocked anything the UK has to offer into a cocked hat. Clutch, Phil Anselmo, Electric Wizard and loads more highlights but for me a rammed sweaty tent bouncing to some Finnish battle metal was just amazing. I’ve seen Turisas a few times but this was by far the best they’ve been.
Also, one occasion when the melee of the Hellfest photo pits played nice…
1: Sabaton Live at Hellfest (or Glasgow)
Things at Hellfest don’t end when the headline band take their bow. After Iron Maiden’s headline performance I stayed at the main stage in the nocturnal heat (well wrapped up in an alcohol fuelled haze) for my highlight of the weekend, in fact my highlight of the year. If I was allowed the same band twice in this list Sabaton would be first and second (Glasgow on the Heroes tour would be #2, if you’re interested).