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RRNI Hosts Rock Review 2010
Balattys Podcast 2010 Review
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Davys Den
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RRNI was started in January 2010 it has built up a Team of local rockers who have put in an awfull lot of effort and hard work between interviews , recording shows  and getting drunk at the RRNI gigs! , I have had a ball in 2010 with RRNI and have experienced some great new bands .

Below is the year in review from the some of the  hosts at RRNI , I wish to thank Nigel, Nik , Seatzie , Balatty , Keith , John Kelly , John Nellins and Davy for their dedication and help through 2010

Rock Radio NI

2010 for me was an eye opening experience starting RRNI , getting to listen to some great bands , meeting some great people and finding out first hand the ups and downs of Rock Promotion and running an online radio station but it was all worth it!.

The local rock scene has been booming with the hard work of all the promoters namely Derwin and the guys at the Diamond Rock Club Winterfest nough said!, Helen and Alan at Hells Bellz Promotions for some great nights down in Bangor, Davy Warren for his great Danny Vaughn gig ,Phil at SONI for some great nights in Belfast and Tina at Ma Nelsons for her Battle of the Bands/ Band Wars and other gigs all of whom have been keeping the local scene alive and kicking!

Not forgetting the Bands themselves who have supported RRNI through out the year between supplying great tracks , live recordings and playing at the RRNI gigs including   Last Known Addiction, Strictly No Ballroom , The Rubber Plants , Worldsend , Inch High, Black Freeway , Trucker Diablo, Triggerman , Double Wide , Balefull Creed, Rebels By Nature, Cross Eyed Mary , Escape Fails , Dirty Stevie, Mask Mantra , Sweet Taste , A Little Bitter , Ajenda, Cave Hill, Sister Marko, Hotter Than Hell  and a big thanks to Pat McManus and his band for ending the year on a high for us by having an absolute legend play at the RRNI Christmas Party.

Eamon Nancarrow for producing a great book Holywood Star if you havent heard about it probably because he doesnt like mentioning it ! , it's one of the funniest books i've read if you havent got it get it!

Big thanks to Greg at the Pavilion for supplying us with a great venue in 2010, Vic from Earth Music Studios for doing great work with sound at our gigs saved my bacon a few times  , The Roost Bar for Rock N Roost and my first experience at djing in a bar, Tina at Ma Nelsons for taking us on for 2011 and the guys at Paradise City for working with us on the DJ Rock Nights!

Finally thanks to everyone who has supported the local rock scene , bought cds/t-shirts from bands , attended gigs / club nights or tuned in to our shows you guys make it worth while!

Phil \m/


Balattys Podcast 2010.

Me, hosting a podcast that literally a few people listen to.....Who'd've thought that?
Because of that I've started to listen to music again.

I'd become the very thing I despise, a member of the "everything new is rubbish" brigade!
I now realise that only a lot of what is new is rubbish!

The good stuff.........

"The Devil Rythym" by Trucker Diablo. Love it. To see them live in 2011 is a priority!!

Last Known Addiction. Saw them live twice this year. Fantastic!

Bandwagon, Jaded Sun, Million$Reload, Crave and god knows how many more.......Irish Rock is in safe hands!!

Further afield, Cherry Suede, Heaven The Axe, to mention a couple, and the old guard still going strong, Springsteens "The Promise" (old stuff, but from his best era!!), Magnum have a new album out in January, Robert Plant can still deliver.........

I got to interview Cherry Suede, Cormac Neeson, Pat McManus and Eamon Nancarrow (more a half cut shouting match in the street, that one!!!)....Gentlemen one and all!!

We lost, amongst others, Ronnie James Dio, Solomon Burke, Captain Beefheart.......RIP

Here's to next year..........

Finally, big shout to Phil Black, without him etc etc etc (don't want you blushing Phil!)


NI Rocks

The local rock scene seemed to go from strength to strength during 2010.

On the recording side, highlights for me were great new album releases from Stormzone, Trucker Diablo, Worldsend and Double Wide, the EP from Bandwagon and a new record contract for Million Dollar Reload and re-release of Anthems of a Degeneration. Things are looking good for 2011 with an album release date in February for Last Known Addiction and hopefully something on the way from Swanee River, Black Freeway, Soundstone, Million Dollar Reload and a few others.

I attended almost 50 gigs locally during 2010, the majority of these featuring only local bands. Whilst it is great to be able to see so many gigs involving local bands, it is unfortunate that so many are poorly attended. There has always been a tendency for some “rockers” only to attend the big name gigs or shows by tribute acts, which is their loss. No doubt the economic situation has also had an impact and it could be argued that fans of local rock music are spoilt for choice.

A personal highlight from these local gigs would be Million Dollar Reload’s acoustic set in the Diamond Rock Club. This was an awesome night of music and entertainment that would be hard to surpass. The summerfest and winterfest in the Diamond must also rate high on anyone’s list for great events in 2010. Some great nights too at the Rock Radio NI gigs in the Pavilion. Highlights for me - Last Known Addiction’s two appearances, the Trucker Diablo/Double Wide/Triggerman show and seeing the new Black Freeway line-up for the first time when they played with Inch High. SONI continue to put on some great gigs :Trucker Diablo, Bandwagon, Last Known Addiction and Stormzone in The Empire stands out. The Distortion Project brought some great acts to Belfast as well as showcasing local bands – the Saturday afternoon gigs in The Limelight being a favourite. I should also mention the Hels Bells nights in Bangor and the Let There Be Rock nights in Draperstown although I have to admit that I haven’t managed to make it to either yet.

Some great bands played here during 2010, though I didn’t get to all the shows. The best gig I attended was Slash in The Mandela Hall – a truly amazing night. Slash’s album was probably the best of 2010 too. Other outstanding gigs for me would be Dan Reed, Tygers of Pan Tang and Girlschool in The Diamond; Winger and Y&T in Spring & Airbrake; WASP in the Mandela Hall and Danny Vaughn in The Rosetta.

The idea of NI Rocks was to promote local rock bands and gigs and when I started in 2009 MySpace was the best base for it. During 2010 it expanded to Facebook and Twitter. More recently the listings have been moved to the Rock Radio NI website.

The launch of Rock Radio NI during 2010 has provided a great opportunity for local rock bands to be heard further afield. The NI Rocks A-Z Show, Nik’s Battle of the Bands and the Friday NI Rocks Show all aim to promote local bands as well as playing a mix of “classic” rock music. The shows have also been great fun to put together; even starting to do the vocal links has been less daunting than expected, though I’ve no plans to give up the day job for DJ’ing!!  Recording and editing Nik’s interview with Danny Vaughn was a real experience and education and something we both enjoyed. Doing the e-mail Q&A session with Clifford Hoad of Kings of the Sun was also a great pleasure.

Hopefully Rock Radio NI and the local rock scene will continue to grow in strength in 2011.



When Phil asked us to each do a review of the year, this was the thought that entered my head…….this year has almost been as glorious as sitting watching Gerry Armstrong score the only goal against Spain in 82 and how that year is regarded as a glory year in the realms of Northern Ireland football. Well 2010 for me in terms of Northern Ireland rock music has been just as glorious, this is mainly due to wider access to new music thanks to RRNI starting, and me making more frequent trips to gigs especially The Diamond to check out local bands. So, in no particular order, everything that I can remember that’s been brilliant about 2010.

Trucker Diablo – releasing my favourite album of the year, The Devil Rhythm, I’ve seen these guys many times especially over the last few months, and the new stuff they’ve been playing live is at least as good as anything on the album! Keep an eye out for them in 2011, with a #1 single on Amazon, their song Drink Beer, Destroy being added to Scuzz TV’s playlist and dates on the mainland UK and Germany lined up amongst other things 2011 looks like being Year of the Big Truck!

Last Known Addiction – After hearing Belfast Daze on RRNI and loving it, I checked these guys out in February in The Diamond and was blown away. Live they are a cracking band, and in their 2nd song released to RRNI – Dirt & The Dust, they have a song which is one of my all time favourites. Rising from support band to local bands at the start of the year to headlining Winterfest, supporting Girlschool, and releasing their first single proper on iTunes – Beer Machine – 2010 has ended well for these guys. Album launch is set for 26th February, you’d be mad to miss it!

Triggerman – for a band that effectively were dead and gone a year ago this year has finished brilliantly. At the start of the year they released their cd Brand New Day initially as a free download as they were on the verge of splitting, but a change of mind, new bass player and finally getting back on the regular gigging circuit again has kept these guys at the top of their game! I’ve loved Triggerman for about 7 years now, but standing in Katy Dalys in October watching Daniel P Carter from Radio 1 Rock Show banging his head to them and tweeting about how good they were should sum it up for you how good they are. Definitely the strongest reception at Winterfest too, at one stage there were concerns for the floor because people were rocking out so much!

Bandwagon – Strange in some ways seeing a band so young and playing music influenced heavily by 70s era rock but this 3 piece carry it off superbly and are excellent musicians. Have seen them a few times over the year and enjoyed every gig! Their single Get Used To It was no1 on as well

Black Freeway – 2010 has been a year of maturing for these guys, replacing their guitarist mid way through the year with 2 older more experienced guitarists was a masterstroke, allowing versatile frontman Matt Fitsimmons to concentrate solely on vocals has worked out well, and in the last quarter of the year the new 5 man Freeway have demonstrated a tightness and maturity that was hinted at in their gigs earlier in the year. They played a fantastic set opening for Danny Vaughn from Tyketto in the Rosetta a few weeks ago and I’m looking forward to hearing the new material they’ve been working on

Sister Marko – Have yet to see these guys live but they have a 3 track ep on iTunes and I’ve been regularly playing 2 tracks off it, Just Let Go and the superb Train From New York, if you like Mindcrime era Queensryche you’ll love the Train song

NASA Assassin – Having gained a superb live reputation I finally got checking them out towards the end of this year and all I can say is WOW! They left me speechless for the first 2 songs and I highly recommend you check them out live and the self titles song Nasa Assassin its like Faith No More on Crack! Superb band live looking forward to a full album in 2011!

Million Dollar Reload – Having been “quiet” recently aside from the odd few gigs, the reason became apparent over the summer when it turned out they’d had an enforced record company change. They have re-released a remastered remixed version of Anthems of a Degeneration and while I was sceptical at first about how different to the original album it may sound, 1 listen through on Spotify killed any scepticism I had! The album may be 3 years old but the new version is like a complete breath of fresh air all the tracks sound so much better sound quality wise and although its 4 songs lighter than the original, like a lot of things, slimming down can be really good! With a UK tour lined up as part of a 4 band bill and hopefully a new album in 2011 I’m hoping these guys finally get the break they deserve!

Worldsend – Their album has yet to materialise but I really like the 4 sampler tracks the band sent in, especially Warning sign which is very Queensryche Mindcrime in feel and live this year I’ve been very impressed with them especially frontman Eddie Currie. Hopefully the album will get released soon and I can finally hear it all! Ended the year opening for Toby Jepson and jamming some tunes with Toby including Little Angels Young Gods song!

Baleful Creed – Playing on the RRNI gig in January, have heard 5 tracks by this band and I’m quite intrigued to hear them live. Most recent download Needing Heaven reached no2 on go check it out for yourself!

Escape Fails – bit of a surprise these guys, had missed them on the gigging circuit but ending up in the last 3 of Kerrang’s Guitar Hero comp soon got people noticing them! They released a cracking free ep Fractions a couple of months ago and its like a less screamy version of 36 Crazyfists and I love it!

Double-Wide – Releasing one of the most discussed albums on must have been their highlight of 2010 lol! Seriously though, a cracking album, and in my opinion a brilliant cover of Dio’s Holy Diver in tribute to the man himself. I hope they release some new stuff in 2011, though their album still regularly gets loaded up on my ipod!

Cherry Suede – Hailing from Canada and with a large slice of acoustic based Jovi in their influences I was very impressed with the album these guys gave away free. They were also the first interview on RRNI as well. Looking forward to hopefully seeing them live on these shores in 2011!

Furyon – how this band have never been signed I’ll never know. Gravitas is a superb album, well worth checking out, from Brighton but produced in Chicago by Shinedown’s producer shows you how serious these guys are!

A Little Bitter – Again a band I’d seen maybe 5 or 6 years ago and picked up again on this year. Check out their awesome Ghengis video on Youtube. Cracking live 3 piece with 2 albums behind them!

Kesus – Another band whose reputation insisted I ahd to check them out, and I wasn’t disappointed, Desert Rock I believe is a good description of them and I’ll look forward to seeing more of them in 2011!

The Diamond – this venue has provided so many of my best memories of 2010, the team down there work really hard and the welcoming atmosphere is second to none! Over the year I’ve seen Dan Reed play 3 awesome gigs, Toby Jepson twice, Ricky Warwick, Summer Minifest, Winterfest, and so many local bands. Looking at their line up in the first 3 months of 2011 just blows me away, considering they’re in a wee village 30 miles from Belfast! Jaded Sun, Virgin Marys, Ricky Warwick, Gun, Dan Reed, Warrior Soul, as well as the LKA Album launch!

Of course the year wouldn’t be complete without mentioning all the new friends I’ve made over the year via the gigs, RRNI, facebook etc, at the minute the scene in Northern Ireland is at the strongest I’ve seen in a long long time, and long may it continue that way! You and me we’re in this together now……



Davys Den

The Guvnor (a.k.a. Phil ) asked me to write a brief view of 2010 even though I'm the new old kid on the block !!! So view on 2010 from a music persepsctive?? Album wise there's been some excellent releases...Alter Bridge, Hinder, Crazy Lixx, Crash Diet, Maiden, Ratt, BLS, Pretty Maids...could go on for a bit!!Locally...Trucker Diablo's album is the stand out for me but that's not taking anything away from releases by many of the other great bands currently around our scene (can't ever remember us having so many good bands!!). Gig wise, once again seems to be improving....with  the arena shows (two nights of Metallica!!!) and trips to Dublin for Kiss and Maiden....we've seen Wasp, FM, Winger, Y&T, Slash, Diamond Head, Glenn Hughes,Danny Vaughn, etc. Highlight for me?? Possibly Y&T but can't think of a gig that I haven't enjoyed.

As for local bands...well the gigs keep coming fast and furious!!  With the usual stalwarts of the scene (Distortion Project & The Diamond) keeping the gigs flowing, we’ve also seen SONI take a foothold and our very own Presidente starting the RRNI’s monthly nights, giving a variety of live shows around the country.  Also the Paradise City rock nights and now Bad Medicine at Ma Nelson’s (along with their regular High Voltage night) provide an alternative to watching live bands.

On the down side of the year musically, the passing of Ronnie James Dio has got to be talking point for me.  Tremendous vocalist who’s voice will be sorely missed on the stage but with a vast catalogue of albums will not be forgotten.

I think 2010 was a great year as far as the music scene goes, been spoilt for choice with gigs, local bands flourishing, rock clubs return and  personally,  a return to promoting for myself  with the Danny Vaughn gig. 2011? Well already many shows in the pipeline, plans afoot for the clubs, and a radio station to help push these events....and also give me a chance to inflict my taste of music upon people out there!!


Sweet Jonnys Rock Show


Well what a year 2010 has been on the local scene.

It has completely surpassed anything in my memory including the heydays of the mid to late 90’s.

Local albums, gigs new venues aplenty, and of course the launch of the essential RRNI!

In true Channel 4 style (well it is New Years Eve) here are my highlights and Lowlights.
First the highs

Album releases from Trucker Diablo and Double-Wide

My song of the year: Violent Revolution by Spiral Force (seriously, try and get it out of your head)

A Little Bitter: The best band in the country by a, well, country mile! An honour to see these guys live and a bigger honour to share the stage with them!

Black Freeway: True future superstars and Glenn Gray!

Gig of the year: Stormzone in Dublin. (fridge of beer helped swing this one) Also learnt never to trust Freeway in a chinese.

Personal highlight: Releasing our debut album, causing a ruckus on Metal Ireland and being the biggest band in China (to come out of Richhill)

Oh and a mention to all the promoters especially Hels, Alan and our own Phil for all their good work.

Em, not a lot (really should have thought this through)

Gig attendances can be disappointing in relation to the massive pool of talent this country has to offer. I feel that 2011 can turn this round as the professionally organised and managed nights will come to the fore and once again pack em in.

Facebook. A necessary evil, but seriously they should have a filter to exclude all the mentally unfit users whose dirty laundry just has to be aired in public.

So thanks for listening and I’ll see ya in 2011 for even bigger and better things.

Keith’s New Release Show Review Of 2010

What will you remember 2010 for?....Recession, Snow/Ice, No Water…

Sounds a bit like the end of the world!!!

From a music perspective we saw bands reform, record albums and tour.  A few that come to mind are Treat, Nelson, Giant and Strangeways…the melodic rock scene seems buoyant again like the 1980’s.

2010 was 1 of the best years for new releases by bands, and proves that the Hard Rock/Metal scene is very much alive and kicking. Unfortunately the scene seems to be staying underground. Lots of the big names in Metal got new albums released:

Iron Maiden, Ozzy, BLS, Blind Guardian, Ratt, Scorpions…etc.

The amount of Remastered reissues this year has been increased, especially Japanese Remasters.

Northern Ireland has seen an increase in bands playing in venues in Belfast, and also the Hard Rock/Metal scene seems to be acceptable again in pubs! We saw the big names come to Belfast….Metallica, Guns & Roses…a few of the smaller bands…Y&T,  Blaze, FM etc. The local scene is thriving with amount of bands playing on a regular basis, which is helped with the local rock fans and venues putting in the time and effort required to set this up and promote.

We lost a few Rock Hero’s in 2010...RJ. Dio, Paul Gray, Steve Lee and our very own Trevor Fleming...and  Alex ‘The Hurricane’ Higgins!!

The Scorpions and Judas Priest decided to call it a day and hang up the instruments.

The future…What does 2011 hold.

We’ve already had a good start to gigs, with Accept and Iron Maiden been announced to play here.

The local scene will thrive, with bigger names playing and more demand for our own local bands playing in venues. The sales of cds will continue to decline, as more cd player manufacturers decide to halt production on players and invest on media streaming players.

We have already had a strong start to this year, with Mr. Big and Stratovarius  announcing album releases for January.

Rock Radio NI will become a bigger player in N.I. as a promoter of local venues and gigs.

A local band will get signed by a label and release a classic slab of rock!!!


Last Updated (Monday, 27 January 2014 23:30)