Slam Dunk Scotland
Less Than Jake, Anti Flag, Goldfinger, Set Your Goals
27th May 2011
For pop-punk fans across the country, the summer festival season is usually kicked off by the ever-growing Slam Dunk travelling circus. Taking lead from the tradition established in 2010, this year’s North and South festivals were accompanied by gigs further afield whose line-ups gave a taste of what was on offer at the main event. We headed along to Slam Dunk Scotland to get a piece of the action…
First up were Set Your Goals, who took to the stage a mere fifteen minutes after doors. They filled the impassive ABC stage with a barrage of ruthless guitar riffs and ear-bending vocals. As the crowd began to grow, so too did the energy of the room with those hanging bar nodding in time as the diehard fans gave it their all in the pit. Nothing could hold this band back – not even a persistently broken guitar strap – and as they left the stage it was in the comfortable knowledge that they’d gained a fair amount of new fans this evening.
Next it was the turn of Goldfinger who commended the crowd like the seasoned pros they are. Tracks such as Superman were punctuated with jibes from John Feldmann who likened tonight’s crowd to a bunch of Justin Bieber fans. A cover of Nena’s 99 Red Balloons ended the set, before the band marched off stage military style. In terms of both musical stylings and stage gimmicks, tonight bore all the hallmarks of a typical Goldfinger show.
Anti-Flag brought a touch of straight up punk rock to the evening, with their fast paced political anthems. Engaging the crowd almost immediately, there were fists and battle cries aplenty during Turncoat and Sodom, Gomarrah, Washington D.C. (Sheep in Shepherd’s Clothing). Anarchy definitely was the name of the game as the set crashed to an end and drummer Pat Thetic attempted to move his kit into the crowd. Having to settle for the photo pit instead, the set ended in a chaos that matched the ferocity of Anti-Flag’s set perfectly.
Finally then it was time for ska punk legends, Less Than Jake. Immediately the floor bubbled to life with a sea of skanking as the band tore through hits such as Sugar In Your Gastank and How’s My Driving Doug Hastings? Light hearted banter was also on the menu this evening, as requests to raise the houselights resulted in Chris Demakes engaging in casual conversation with the security staff.
Overall tonight’s line-up may have looked slightly eclectic on paper, but in the flesh it resulted in good times had by all. As the band’s headed south for the main Slam Dunk festival, the Scottish crowd headed home content with their slice of the pie. Here’s to Slam Dunk 2012!