Freeway – The Roman Bath, 18/10/08

Being honest, I wasn’t planning on going out this weekend. My original plan for this year was to try to average a gig every other week and, given that I’d been to two gigs last week, I thought I’d better stay home with Debbie for a change.

However, Freeway were playing the Roman Bath so we settled for a compromise. Our Daughter was dropped off at the grandparents and Debbie and I went out together, starting the evening with a nice Chinese at Happy Valley in Goodramgate and then heading to the Bath for some musical entertainment.

Freeway, you may remember, are a heavy metal covers band who perform songs by the likes of Thin Lizzy, Whitesnake, Gary Moore and the like. This was the first time I’d had a chance to see them since the sad and untimely death of drummer Howard Sparnenn and, while members of his family were present in the audience, this time there was no guest vocal spot by daughter Livvy.

The music was good – the usual mix of tracks, played excellently – and a good time was had by all.

Howard had been replaced on drums by Paul Gibbons who, as well as handing over a pair of splintered drumsticks to a female fan at the end of the gig, is also the drummer with Morpheus Rising which, in turn, is the long-time project of Pete Harwood, Freeway’s guitarist. Also, featuring Andy Smith (Mostly Autumn), with Grae Tennick on vocals and newly announced guitarist Damien Sweeting, Morpheus Rising promises to echo the New Wave of British Heavy Metal. They list their influences as the likes of Saxon, Iron Maiden, The Cult, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple and more. With a pedigree like that, they sound as though they are worth looking out for.

They have a single – An Ordinary Man – available for download from their site from the 27th of October and all proceeds will be going to Help for Heroes, a charity supporting injured forces personnel. According to their website, the band are currently fine-tuning their music before unleashing it on the world. I’ll be looking out for them playing live around York.


About Ian

Regular gig-goer in York, both to see local and touring bands. Huge music fan, with more CDs than my wife thinks any one person should own. I also collect American comics, read a lot of SF and fantasy and am a season-ticket holder at Leeds United.
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