Young Knives Are Back!

  Montreux Jazz Festival 2021

  Music & Brexit

  USA Inauguration 2021

  Ani DiFranco New LP +

  Discover David Ford

  New 2021 Releases

  Happy New Year?

  Black Sabbath VOL 4 Revisited

  All Things Must Pass 50th

  The Wainwrights Plus Virtual

  My Best Albums for 2020

  Joe Bonamassa Guitar Man

  Katie Melua Live

  Foo Fighters Live & New LP

  Is The USA Nightmare Over?


  Download Back in 2021!

  On Barbra Streisand

  Roger Waters Us + Them Review

  Skunk Anansie 2021 Tour

  CHERNOBYL By Serhii Plokhy

  Metallica’s S&M2 Review

  Barbara Thompson @ The BBC

  Delicate Sound Of Thunder

  The State We’re In…

  Welcome Back! But To What?

  What Have We Done?


  New Album Reviews

  Montreux Jazz Fest at Home!

  Photojournalism Hero

  Samantha Fish Live

  Gill Landry Live in Chester

  Noah Gundersen Live

  David Gilmour’s Interview

  Snow Patrol Live in Manchester

  New Model Army Live

  Shakespears Sister Live

  Lamb Live in Manchester

  The Struts Live

  Sting & Shaggy Live

  Ana Popovic, Lynne Jackaman Live

  David Gray Live in Liverpool

  The Slow Readers Club Live

  Karine Polwart Trio Live

  Benjamin Folke Thomas Live

  Chilly Gonzales Live

  Gomez Live in Manchester

  John Lennon Interview

  My 100 Favourite Albums

  Ray LaMontagne Live

  Satriani’s G3 Live

  Emily Barker Live in Manchester

  Jim White Live in Manchester

  Tori Amos Live

  Bush & RavenEye Live

  Grandaddy Live

  Laura Marling Live

  Martha Wainwright Live

  Jimmy Eat World Live

  Beverley Knight Live

  Ludovico Einaudi Live

  Roger Waters on Amused To Death

New Model Army Live


Chester Live Rooms, Chester, 19 November 2019

Back in 1999 I attended a 10 day music festival in Ireland in county Cork. It was held in a wonderful place called Liss Ard and attended by hundreds of the most dedicated and serious Irish music fans. To give you a flavour of the festival’s quality it included John Cale, Nick Cave, Pulp, John Martyn, Bernard Butler, Bonny Prince Billy, Japan’s wonderful Cornelius, Handsome Family, Mark Eitzel, Afro Celt Sound System, Arab Strap, Drugstore and many more. It was here I met Justin Sullivan who performed several solo acoustic shows. Sullivan attended with his partner Joolz who was there for the literary segment of the festival and read her opwn prose. It was a very special event and I got to like and respect Sullivan a lot but, until now, have never witnessed a performance by his band New Model Army.


The Chester Live Rooms is the city’s best rock venue by a country mile and of late has featured some excellent talent. Now this is very handy as it’s my home town so when New Model Army came to town, I quickly put my hand up… But first on tonight’s venue is a band I did not know. Headsticks hail from Stoke On Trent in Staffordshire so this venue cpould be loosely described as local.

Band Members

Andrew Tranter (vocals, harmonica)
Steve Dunn (guitar, backing vocals)
Nick Bayes (bass, backing vocals)
Tom Carter (drums)


It’s the first time I’ve attended The Live Rooms to find a long line of punters waiting to enter the venue. It then struck me that Headsticks may have brought along many of its loyal fans and as their show started (without ceremony) the ruckus that ensued proved that this was the case. Tranter exploded out of the blocks and continued to display a rare passion and enthusiasm. Steve Dunn was superb on electric and acoustic guitars while the bass section provided a floor-shaking, solid foundation. I am not familiar with the band’s music but loved the political and special musical themes underpinned by powerful melodies. Midway through the set and Tranter recited the most beautiful and heartfelt poem exploring despair and hope. The fans’ enthusiasm built through the show and included some pretty skilful backing vocals…I was deeply impressed by the band’s performance and frankly could not think of a better folk/punk/rock warm-up act for the feature band.



Mississippi’s Burning
Flatline Town
Cold, Grey English Skies
Dying For A Lie
What If They’re Right?
Out Of Fashion
Paper Flowers
My Own War

Headsticks Biography

Formed in 2012 Headsticks have developed their own brand of Revolutionary Punk Roots Rock’n'Roll, through constant gigging which has seen their profile continually rise alongside the growth of a fanatical fan base.

Supports with bands as varied as The Wildhearts, Lindisfarne, Spear Of Destiny, Buzzcocks, and Ferocious Dog have seen their music cross over genre barriers and has been received with the same enthusiasm and passion that they themselves produce in their live shows… honest and raw social commentary delivered with a wry sense of humour, uplifting and always giving 100%.

The release of their third studio album KEPT IN THE DARK in March 2019 has been received with favourable reviews from pillars of both the punk rock and folk worlds, as the band continues to cement it’s reputation for crowd pleasing, genre crossing, passion infused live performances.

Fast becoming festival favourites, Headsticks continue their crusade to say it like it is and were delighted to be one of just a handful of bands asked to play two sets at 2018’s Rebellion Punk Rock Festival, playing full electric and almost acoustic sets to thunderous receptions and look forward to a busy schedule for Summer and Autumn 2019.

Hard hitting, emotive, yet infectious songs and melodies a-plenty have seen the band grow from being an afternoon band to a headliner at many grass roots festivals, and sub headliner at larger events too, as well as playing endless benefits, events, line ups and headline shows of their own… KEPT IN THE DARK already appears to be propelling the band to new heights, and the band have every intention of capitalising on these early signs of success as they aim to reach new audiences with their very unique blend of Punk, Folk, Roots and Ska.

Page: 1 2


Shakenstir Photo Supplement
Manchester 2009 - Gallery: Rodrigo Y Gabriela
Rodrigo Y Gabriela

Conductor - Gallery: Sir Simon Denis Rattle
Sir Simon Denis Rattle Composer, Conductor - Gallery: John Adams
John Adams
Shakenstir - Homepage Links Reviews Live Interviews Features News Contact Gallery Shakenstir - Homepage