This was a reunion of the bands who competed in Highway to Hell with Screaming Eagles, Maverick and Baleful Creed. Sinoncence were unable to join their hard rock compadres owing to an injury to their drummer.
Despite that disappointment this line-up, promoted by James Loveday's Distortion Project, showcased some of the tremendous talent that this small country offers.
|Fin Finlay - Baleful Creed|
From Hex to Autumn Leaves to self-titled Baleful Creed, this was a set that snarled like an alligator in the Lousiana swamps. Allen's soulful solos more than equalled by Finlay's riffing. Finlay's vocals were complemented by backing from drummer Stewart,while Fleming nailed each and every bass run.
There was a dark elegance to this collection of tunes, with Thorazine a stand-out.
|Maverick demanding your presence|
From the declaration that they are indeed Maverick the five-piece pounded the boards with Davey Balfour leading the crowd a merry dance like a hard rockin' pied piper trapped in the 80s but bursting into the 21st Century.
With new tracks and existing material off their existing e.p. this was a stormer - even new guitarist Richard Cardwell shredded despite only being with the band a short time.
|Screaming set from Screaming Eagles|
Fry's vocals powerful and soulful throughout with McAlleenan's guitar work shredding and soloing throughout with Lily and Cruikshank anchoring the whole set.
Devil in the Dust tuned down southern vibe quickly rattled into Fight the Fire as mid-set highlights, while set closer Rock 'n' Roll Soul epitomised the effort the band put into their work.
All three bands on display are pure examples of what Northern Ireland can offer. With Million$Reload, Payola, Zombified and Terminus playing elsewhere in the city on Saturday night there is no clearer evidence that Northern Ireland, right here, right now is the heart and soul of rock and metal nirvana.