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ConcertsHard Rock Hell VI - Fistful Of Rock Day Three @ Pwllheli, Wales 12/02/2012

Posted on Sunday, December 23 2012 @ 09:44:23 CST by Dean Pedley
Heavy Metal Completing our extensive coverage from Hard Rock Hell VI is the review of Day Three which featured on some of the very best contemporary metal on offer from both sides of the Atlantic. Led by the feisty Kobra Paige, Kobra and the Lotus wowed the HRH crowd and other highlights included sets from Fozzy, Breed 77 and an explosive headline performance from Buckcherry.

Sunday 2 December

With just the one stage on the final day there is still no shortage of quality bands and Northern Ireland's Trucker Diablo kick start the action with a bang. With some high profile supports and a strong work ethic Trucker seem destined for bigger and better things. They also have the songs to match the attitude and 'Rock Hallelujah', 'Drive' and 'Drink Beer' are as fiercely executed as their titles suggest.

Breed 77 have been around for a few years now and have got a strong body of material to draw from, their flamenco metal hybrid really bursting into life with some fluid riffing and the precise and emotional vocals of Paul Isola. They work in a crowd pleasing cover of Alice Cooper's 'Poison' alongside their own back catalogue and continue to hold a unique niche in the world of metal.

All girl power trio The Amorettes are a late replacement for blues rockers Stray and certainly make a strong impression. A fellow reviewer remarks that they have come a long way in the last twelve months and they deliver a tightly executed set, something that is critical for the three piece format. Taking their inspiration from AC/DC, Slade, Sweet and The Ramones they whip up a storm with guitarist / vocalist Gill showcasing some catchy riffs and razor sharp solos.

The re-pairing of vocalist Matti Alfonzetti and guitarist Myke Gray in Red White & Blues is a sight welcomed across the whole festival site, they were last seen playing together in Jagged Edge some years ago. Performing their unashamedly classic rock, powered by some frantic riffing, it's a set that really lifts the whole of the arena. Like the bastard son of Bad Company & Whitesnake the riffs rock through the site and the hair flows in the audience to the massive chorus', cracking stuff.

Another band that are on an upward curve is the dynamic Kobra and the Lotus, led by one of the most striking front-women in rock and metal, the stunning Kobra Paige. Their electrifying hour long set includes an inspired cover of Maiden's 'The Wicker Man' alongside the modern metal assault of 'No Rest for the Wicked', 'Welcome To My Funeral' and new single '50 Shades Of Evil'. Kobra and the Lotus are a band that are fast assembling the songs and the stage-craft to go with their much-hyped reputation and headline tours of decent sized venues are surely imminent. The pub-rock r'n'b of Dr Feelgood provides a nice change of pace with 'Milk and Alcohol' and 'Down by the Jetty' highlighting some tasty blues licks and solos from guitarist Steve Walwyn. Robert Kane has been fronting the band for more than a decade and whilst he can never capture the charm or charisma of the late Lee Brilleaux this current incarnation are keeping his memory alive.

Has Y2J come to save us? Maybe not but make no mistake that Chris Jericho means business with Fozzy and latest album Sin and Bones is their best yet. A commanding hour of punchy contemporary metal sees Jericho in fine form and looking every bit as comfortable as a mic-wielding metallic frontman as he did in the wrestling ring. 'Spider in my Mouth', 'Sandpaper' and 'Sin and Bones' are dramatic highlights from the latest album and when Fozzy close out with 'Enemy' and 'Blood Happens' the HRH crowd are firmly on their side. No mere sideshow to their singer's other career, Fozzy have what is takes to become a major league metal band.

Ryan McCombs is back in the fold after leaving for Drowning Pool some years ago, however to regain past glories is somewhat of an uphill struggle. Songs are fine, performance is fine, even Ryan's voice and walkabout into the crowd is acceptable but Soil sound thin. When I witnessed them on their first UK tour they were immense, maybe they need to employ an additional guitarist to fatten up the sound on fan favorites 'Halo' & 'Unreal'….good set, if somewhat tired. Hard Rock Hell VI comes to its climax with the ever reliable Buckcherry, some long tours; the last in support of their album All Night Long has seen them become hardened road veterans. With new album Gluttony on the horizon Buckcherry are keen to shake off the cobwebs and finish this party in style. Josh Todd is the perfect front man transcending his bands sleazy message to the screaming cougars on the barrier. A great set, balanced with hard rockers and a sprinkle of ballads sees Hard Rock Hell melt into a wave of crowd participation on 'Sorry' and the climax of 'Crazy Bitch' sees Wales turn into one big strip club…awesome ending to a truly spectacular weekend.

And so the curtain falls down on HRH VI with the memories of some of the best that the rock and metal world currently has to offer. The beauty of HRH is its sheer diversity of genres as Quireboys and Testament sharing the same stage goes to prove. Tickets are going fast for HRH VII in twelve months time and we're already looking forward to more of the same!

Words – Dean Pedley & Mark Davies
Images – Mark Davies
Thanks to Jonni, Claire and all of the Chic PR Team

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