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Thunderstick + Spyder Byte

Saturday 29th June 2024

Leo's Red Lion, Gravesend

On a balmy night down in Gravesend, this audience witnessed the initial performance of the new Thunderstick show aptly titled Circus Psychotica.

Delving into the theatrical, occasionally macabre world of Alice Cooper (the favourite artist of Barry Graham Purkis, aka Thunderstick himself, formerly of Iron Maiden and Samson) the show mixes a multitude of costume changes (by the excellent lead singer Raven Blackwing), magic, masses of characters, Peter J. Pinto (lead guitar, ex Modern Romance) in clown garb, Rex Thunderbolt (bass) resplendent in waist coat and top hat and a string of great songs delivered with panache, occasional venom but always a dash of style.

Pinto pumped through both speakers takes the lead immaculately with a number of great solos, the rhythm section is a thing of awesome power with Thunderbolt’s great bass lines and a huge amount of power and finesse from within the tented percussion area at the back within which Thunderstick may be not visible, but is certainly heard and then there’s the frankly great, powerful vocals of Raven underpinning it all.

Recently reduced from a five piece this felt tighter than the show I witnessed at A New Day Festival last year; there is a flow and purpose to this line up which merges perfectly together. The theatre of it all is great; making for a show that is both aesthetically and aurally pleasing.

It’s hard to pick favourite tracks here as the songs all sounded great and match the perceived characters so just see the setlist pictured below for your delectation. Thunderstick deserve a greater audience, I’d certainly highly recommend them as a band that have to be seen and heard.

A quick mention too for the excellent Spyder Byte who offered up a great support set suggesting they may also be heading places.

Les Linyard

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