Stockton Calling. 16.4.22

It’s a blistering hot day in Stockton, something which the promoters, venues and Stockton council would have been hoping for on a day that brings commerce and culture to the region.  My day starts off with Pave the jungle who play a glorious set at the Georgian caked in the post punk/ mental style of Savages with thunderous bass riffs and deep, almost Nico, vocal parts in places.  They’re a great start to my day.
A quick run around to KU sees a packed-out show for local indie pop hero Michael Gallagher who’s good time nature and style plays straight into the crowds hands and leaves a line of people outside desperate to get in. 
It’s a quick run upstairs to the lovely Social room next for a lovely acoustic set with rn’b vibes from Faye Fantarrow including the standouts Ten and L.O.V.E.
Joe Ramsey’s up next at the ARC with a band line up that might be the best star studded line up of the day, including local starlet Jodie Nicholson.  Ramsay’s set is full of pop rock gems like Stride and Two sides all of which sound like they’ve all come off Santana’s Supernatural and are fully supported fully by excellent guitar licks from Josh Brown.
A quick change of outfit and stage setting see’s Jodie Nicholson return to the ARC stage next for her own set.  Off set slightly by a last-minute change to the line-up (two of her band were ruled out with Covid on Thursday) Nicholson’s set is solo, mostly driven by piano, and features gems like the lovely acoustic guitar track Second Sun.  There’s a future Stevie Nicks here I’m convinced.
A jump across to the KU sees Liverpool’s Stone take to the stage for a Clash and IDLES inspired set of hardcore heaviness, left-wing politics and American psycho t shirts.  Full on from the word go, and over the barriers into the crowd on more than one occasion, they deliver potentially the best set of the day.
A wonderful Georgian double header is up next with post punk English Teacher (full of energy and with the wonderful track Good grief) and the sublime glam-opera stomp of Walt Disco glam (utterly flawless and full of compliments for the crowd) before a final tear-up from Pigeon Detectives brings the house down on a terrific day of music for me which inly touches the vast line up of the day.  I wish I could be in six places at once.