Review: Gary Grainger & Virgil & The Accelerators





I played a support slot for Virgil & The Accelerators on Saturday Night. I had a great time, hanging out and shooting the breeze with the guys and Martin, their manager. The audience were very receptive, listening to my almost hour long set, which was great. I then had the pleasure of introducing Virgil, Gabriel and Jack for their storming set.
Here’s a review from Mike Craggs, a big fan of the band:


Mainsforth Community Centre and, my 10th VATA show. What a show it was: going in and chatting to the guys beforehand, the glint they had in their eyes, I knew something special was on the cards. Mainsforth is a 1920’s dancehall come theatre, so the guys were let loose on a big stage in a big, booming room; maybe not for the first time, but tonight, they weren’t backing and they weren’t supporting, it was THEIRS and they were going to make the most of it. Mustachioed Gary Grainger from Bishop FM did an opening set for the lads, some well picked (and chosen) acoustic Americana; ZZ Top, Grateful Dead, Little Feat, Janis Joplin, Steve Miller were among the selection. Good listening to get the “new meat” audience in the mood. Wow, VATA didn’t hold back. Gabriel’s drumming messed with everyone’s heart rhythm while Jack’s bass was fluttering the diaphragms , the Virgil kicked-off and the “Working Man” opening riff sounded more like the Jurassic Park T-Rex than the previous night’s wounded bear. From then on, it was “business as usual” in terms of the set list, but Virgil had a stage to own, and he set about it in fine style – not running about like he was on fire, but prowling to the edge to check out this strange phenomenon – people dancing!!! It wasn’t just Virgil and the good folk of Ferryhill enjoying themselves, Gabe and Jack were having a high ol’ time too. Then came “The Strorm” and “Voodoo Chile”; I know Virgil is good, damn good to be precise, but this night, he went right through the zone and took everyone with him. “Silver Giver” set closer and a great encore left the crowd wanting more right until curfew time. There aren’t many bands come to Ferryhill, Mainsforth, which is a shame as it’s a cracking venue, but there’s even fewer make such a mark as VATA did. Bill made a bold decision inviting the band, so hats off to him, and a big show of appreciation to the guys on the sound desk for letting VATA roar.

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