Dead Of Winter Festival @ The Jubilee Hotel, Brisbane (14/07/2012)

Dead Of Winter Festival, what more could you ask for? A day complete with everything from all the craziest hair styles and Goth outfits you can imagine to zombies, a zombie fashion show, wound painting, burlesque and of course…plenty of live music. Celebrating the many great rock, hardcore, heavy metal, punk and rockabilly bands in our fine country, Dead Of Winter brings them all up to one place, the Jubilee Hotel in Brisbane and celebrates with style. With five stages located around the hotel including the car park and beer garden as well as inside, Dead Of Winter takes out all of the walking and waiting around in the hot sun to make this a truly enjoyable experience.

Kicking things off early in the day is the Brisbane metal mayhem of Demoniker. These guys and gals are absolutely chaotic with everything from the usual guitars and makeup of metal but with violins, fire performances and stripteases added. Even if you are not a fan of this bands music you are still left standing there watching in amazement at what unfolds on their stage. An interesting start to the day to say the least and just in case you were likely to forget about them, lead singer El Loco Motive throws their CD’s into the crowd as they leave the stage.

Next to take to the main beer garden stage is the Brisbane four piece rockabilly sounds of Regular Gonzales. With a double bass and some pretty slick hair styles, the band crank through their set gaining a few new fans along the way. Not shy of the crowd, guitarist Dan E Deville takes a run through the punters, sparking a little bit of excitement among the few fans.

As Snakes and Daggers take the beer garden stage you quickly get the idea that these guys are a bit old school, and their first song confirms it. Delivering their onslaught of rock ‘n’ roll, Snakes and Daggers have a very Guns & Roses sound, even the guitarist, James Snake, seems to be channelling a bit of Slash. The bands driving guitars, pounding drums and awesome guitar solos deliver one of the best sets of the day.

The first female fronted band of the day takes to the stage in the form of The Meaniacs. The six piece punk band with a brass section get punters from everywhere coming in to dance, kick and even twist to their brilliant live show. With a sound that could be compared to the Mighty Mighty Bostones, The Meaniacs deliver a high energy set that everyone is having a great time to.

Taking a walk out the car park stage and you met with the cool bluesy rock sounds of Greg McHugh’s Loose and Nasty. The surprise in this set is that it’s only one guy. McHugh plays a great foot stomping set all by himself on guitar, drums, tambourine and harmonica. Sculling a Bundy and playing his guitar with his drumsticks, McHugh’s gives a very entertaining set to many new fans.

Bringing some more Rockabilly and dirty blues to the main stage are Brisbane favourites Transvaal Diamond Syndicate. Lead singer Christian Tryhorn’s harsh voice mixed with the great guitar riffs gets the crowd up dancing and participating in what is a very fun and enjoyable set. Rocking music and a lot of energy makes these guys one of the finest bands on the day.

Taking some time to walk around the venue now and there is a whole host of different things on. From the inside crowd head-banging to the thrash sounds of Spitfireliar to the interesting burlesque shows of Madeline Glasseater and Venus Vamp, this festival makes sure it has something for everyone.

Sydney Horror Punk band Horrorwood Mannequins bring the screamo and crazy outfits to the beer garden stage along with some very classic sounding metal riffs. Front man Audri Medicate makes it very clear to the crowd on several occasions that he is not wearing any pants and it is clear that these guys are simply here to rock out and have a bloody good time.

Finally just when you thought the bands couldn’t get much better on the night, a duo by the name of Hell and Whiskey come out to give the crowd a cracking good time. Two guys, the Snakes and Daggers front man Captain Diklich …as he goes by, and Benny Whiskey put on the set of the night. Even though he may look like Kid Rock, Diklich has some incredible vocals and sure knows how to connect with the crowd whilst Whiskey’s acoustic guitar delivers some face melting solos that are truly impressive. Anyone and everyone that is watching this band is clapping their hands, stomping the feet and dancing their assess off as the duo rip through their half hour set.

All in all Dead Of Winter offers a different and interesting experience with a whole range of diverse acts that will leave you gasping, laughing, moshing or just stunned in complete amazement. A great time had by all.