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Damian Wilson Band, Confuzion, Oakwood Centre, Rotherham 29th November 2003

Well, here we go again, leaving sunny Leicestershire (?) to the south Yorkshire area to see the two above bands.

Now, we knew all about Damian Wilson, but opening act Confuzion were quite entertaining.  Front person and singer is 22-year-old Emma Pook, and with her all black outfit and long blonde hair kept the male part of the crowd glued to the front of the stage.  The music is a mixture of pop type rock, with a splat of prog in the riffs, and drummer Nick Mylum along with bassist Dave Woodage kept the bones of the band ticking along well.  Guitarist Pat Kohlhammer stood out in my opinion, nice licks around the songs, and fast fretwork, he could play in any band.  On keys is Nick Willson, who had some great moments too.

Confuzion has one CD available at the moment, and most of the set was lifted from it.  They ended with a cracking version of Deep Purple’s Black Night, which got a big cheer.  A tidy performance!

Damian Wilson and his fine band took to the stage, and many of them had not played together before. The ‘two’ bass players took turns in each song, a bit like the Mr Ben shopkeeper approach, and Damian took to the stage like it was his home.  The two sets packed with songs from his two solo outings, made a nice balance between acoustic and electric, and not to mention certain styles which included a bit of country.  When I Leave This Land got us underway, a nice moving number and this was followed by Fable, which is like a sing a long number which most of the crowd knew.  Ending the first set was Commune, a great number where everyone joined in!

Set two soon came around, and the highlight for me was Homegrown, very apt for the venue, as there is no smoking in the place anyway, good job there were no teachers on duty!  Naked was a fine song too, which directs us towards the new album, due out soon we were informed, and it should be a big seller along with the first two albums.  Encores were Just The Way It Goes and One Life, and the band left the stage to a welcomed applause.

This was a great evening.  Damian is arguably one of the best vocalists around today, and he should take the honours at the Classic Rock Society awards night next weekend at which HHH will be in attendance of course, and we hope Confuzion will go on and get good reviews too.

Danny Mayo


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