It was 6pm on a cold, windy evening in Soho. I had two hours till my radio show and I was hungry. But I’d been invited to the video screening of the latest single from British rock band, The Blend and I was curious.
So I walked into one of my favourite haunts, Karma Sanctum Hotel and went downstairs into the screening room where was a fully stocked bar, a room of friends and family of the band and Brick Top from Snatch. (Cue record scratch moment in your head). BRICK TOP?! The legend Alan Ford stars in the video and he came down for the screening. What a gent. I got to chat to him about music. We told me about watching Chet Baker at Ronnie Scott’s weeks before he killed himself. And after the screening and set from The Blend, we retired to the rooftop for drinks. Ah yes. The set. THE BLEND!
What a band.
After we’d watched the premiere of Back To Business, The Blend treated us to a 20-minute set which they started by apologising for the volume we were about to be hit with. And rightly so. It was loud.
Imagine if Pete Townsend, Mick Jones, John Bonham and Rick Wakeman made a supergroup, that’s The Blend. Not that I’m making comparisons or alignment – there’s no rock god status here. But they’re young and have incredible potential. This is the rock and roll we all say we don’t see anymore. Boundaries are being pushed, or rather, put back in place to be smashed apart again.
At times, it felt like The Blend were just jamming. At one point the keys player started attacking the keyboard. Loved that. Passion. Pure rock and roll. There’s not always a lyric structure and it’s nice to be reminded that we don’t need it.
There was even a brave instrumental track where, if I closed my eyes, I could see a hundred teenagers in the 70s losing their minds on that weird jittery film footage you see on BBC4 documentaries. Oh, and there was a drum solo. Magic.
Oh and one last thing. I always think a band should look like a band but these guys don’t and I think I like that. Instead of co-ordinating outfits or at least having some level of coherence, they look like they’ve rocked up (literally) in whatever they already had on that day, and for once I don’t mind. The drummer looked like he had a work shirt on from Burtons. But he also sounded like Keith Moon so… There’s no pretentiousness here, just honest rock music.
If you get a chance to see them live, see for yourself.