Nottingham Rock City is one of those legendary music destinations, hosting bands of whom many have gone on to bigger and better things. So for a proud Burtonian, it was always going to warrant a trip to see Burton-on-Trent’s biggest musical exports Max Raptor do their thang!
If bands like AllUsOnDrugs are bringing the Seattle grunge sound back, then Liberty Lies are bringing back that smooth Seattle sound reminiscent of Stone Temple Pilots but with a bit of Black County thrown in. You’d have actually been a little surprised the Liberty Lies weren’t the headline band, due to the large amounts of Liberty Lies t-shirts littered about the Rock City Basement, and the abundance of people standing front of stage trying to out sing frontman Shaun Richards. In a saturated market of pop-punk bands emerging in the UK, Liberty Lies could offer a more than adequate alternative for the rock mainstream to latch onto.
EMP!RE are another refreshing sound in the pop-punk saturated UK music scene, they are a rock band with soul, and the only band I’ve ever seen to rock up on stage with a front man drinking a nice cup of tea.
Burton-on-Trent is not the type of environment that one would expected a band like Max Raptor to emerge from. Their anthemic yet scathing punk tunes de-construct themes including politics and current social issues, yet are still catchy sing-a-long punk anthems. Take in a Max Raptor show, and I dare you not to be screaming along with Wil Ray to tracks such as ‘England Breathes’ and ‘The King Is Dead’ it is impossible. When ‘The King Is Dead’ hits, you know there is going to be carnage, with bassist Matt Stevenson ending up a blur in the melting pot.
With the band coming towards the end of a two year ‘album cycle’ following the release of ‘Mothers Ruin’, the new material the Raptor had ready at their disposal was well received, and with rumours of a new E.P and album hinted at, expect to see a bit more of Max Raptor in 2016.