Review: Cheltenham Underground, Slak

The Cheltenham Underground have a reputation for putting on interesting music nights. Not having any preconceptions or limitations as to style or genre, you are never quite sure what to expect on one of their shows except that it will be a good night with some great music.

And so, after a summer break the Cheltenham Underground returned, and where else could they put on the show but their spiritual home of Slak in Cheltenham?

First on to the stage, or at least the area of floor designated as the stage, was Johnny5thWheel. A mixture of traditional folk with more modern stylings, Johnny often plays with his roving band TheCowards but this evening he treated us to a solo set. A quirky sound with an odd lyrical and vocal style – something akin to The Decemberists deciding to play Monty Python songs – led to an interesting if uninspiring set. When the most memorable part of the performance is the singer”™s moustache (which was so impressive a Victorian villain would be proud) it’s not a good sign.


News: The Cheltenham Underground Returns

After a summer-long hiatus to recharge the batteries, Gloucestershire based music promotion team The Cheltenham Underground return with a new show to tantalise the taste buds.

Returning to their spiritual home of Slak on Friday 17th September, Cheltenham Underground once again present us with an exciting and eclectic mix of music.

The line up for the evening consists of the following:

Johnny5thWheel&TheCowards. With The Ark Magazine describing their music as ”˜transporting you to a tavern in the 17th Century with a tankard of ale in hand”™, this upbeat folk band sounds like a great way to start the evening.

Next up, Stressechoes. Having played the taverns of Cheltenham as a two-piece performing mainly covers for the last couple of years, they have now expanded into a four piece and are concentrating on producing their own material. The addition of drums and bass has seen Stressechoes go from strength to strength.

Finally, headlining are The Wilderness of Manitoba. This five piece Canadian folk outfit choose not to rely on electric instruments, but rather the strength of their melodies and vocals which include intricately weaved three and four piece harmonies wrapped around traditional folk elements.