REVIEW – Blaize Launch Party, The Bongo Club, 5th June

BLAIZE is a new entry on Edinburgh’s live music scene and is a student-friendly event run by enthusiastic (and hard to spell) promoter Rurigdh. He wants BLAIZE to be synonymous with being “loud, energetic and awesome”, and on the strength of this – the launch gig at The Bongo Club – he might just have succeeded.

Le Salon du Jazz Refuse

Le Salon du Jazz Refuse

First up are Le Salon du Jazz Refuse, an eight-piece big band, playing jazz and funk numbers. Snappily-dressed and extremely tight, Le Salon’s groove got things off to a mellow and enjoyable start, putting big grins on most of the punters’ faces with their Love Boat Big Band style set.

With twin saxes, trombone, keys, bass and bongos, Le Salon du Jazz Refuse created a satisfyingly full sound which swirled intoxicatingly around the room before they cruised off into the sunset.

Jump: Press A

Jump: Press A

If it’s loud, energetic and awesome you’re after, Jump:Press A deliver in spades. The big stage at the Bongo suits this exciting six-piece well, allowing all the band members – from L-a on keys to Gavin on bass – their share of the limelight. Frontwoman Kelagh and guitarists Lesley and Ru take front and center and the band rip through a set full of powerful pop-punk tunes, each one of them blasting out like ballistic missiles full of guitar-driven fury into the appreciative audience.

Nora bangs out crashing rhythms on the drumkit as the band continue their assault, Lesley treating her guitar like a weapon of aural destruction as Kelagh’s strong and clear vocals fire out over the heads of the appropriately jumping crowd.

For all their sonic fury, J:PA’s songs are well-crafted and accessible, and by the time set-closer ‘Bulletproof’ comes along all too soon, they’ve shown why they’re gaining fans with every gig they play.

The Void

The Void

Headliners The Void take the stage next. This Edinburgh-based four piece are creating quite a buzz with their arrestingly anthemic and thousand-mile high indie rock, and tonight they don’t disappoint.

The Void’s set displays a sense of maturity and talent that is rare for an unsigned band. Surfing along in the wake of the likes of Biffy Clyro, their sweepingly epic guitar-fuelled music exudes passion and emotion, coupled with a dynamic onstage presence that carries them along with style.

With intelligent well-crafted songs and lyrics, this is indie rock music in great big capital letters – and are another band who will very likely not have to wait long before a label comes a-calling.

So, a new live venture has launched, in a great big explosion of loudness, energy and awesomeness. It looks like these events will be helping to keep Edinburgh’s live music scene blazing in the months to come and it’ll be well worth checking out what the boy Rurigdh’s got planned next.

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