Breaking the Silence

It's been some year for McQueen with European tours, festivals slots at Rock Am Ring, SwedenRock, Hyde Park Calling and critical acclaim for their debut album. Thanks to their label Demolition sponsoring the Rock Legends stage they find themselves in the company of Saxon and Twisted Sister and the crowd that you'd expect that stage to bring with it.

It's good to see them finally gracing a big stage and playing to hundreds rather than forty or fifty and they're not about to let the opportunity slip by. The sound on this stage has been great all weekend & it remains so throughout their half hour set. As their last UK gig of the year they seem determined to go out on a high and give one of the best performances I've seen from them. There are no surprises in the set but the performance is energised and they are on top form. Leah has her stagecraft down to a fine art and it's especially good to see that new bassist Kat Bax seems firmly at home in this environment.

I've said it before but the intro is still way too long but all is forgiven when they crash into a pumped up version of 'Dirt'. They only get time for 8 songs today and rip through them in quick succession. It's the mark of a good band that no matter how many times you've seen them do it, the songs still sound fresh and vibrant & that's the case with most of the set, tracks like 'Neurotic' and ' Break The Silence' are as good as anything we've heard here all weekend. One or two of the older songs are starting to drag just a little, 'Blinded' in particular could do with putting it's feet up for a while but I have to remind myself that for many this is still their first exposure to McQueen.

It's all over too quickly but judging from the crowd reaction they have succeeded in finishing the live year on a high note. We always thought it would be a good year for McQueen and so it's proved, tonight being the finishing touch. Oh and if they hadn't done enough already they also got to play Twister with Twisted Sister! It doesn't get much more rock and roll than that.