What a year it's been for Be Sharp Promotions. In 2018 they've booked Teenage Bottlerocket, A Wilhelm Scream, Lightyear, Random Hand, The Toasters, Pkew Pkew Pkew, Red City Radio, The Penske File, Fandangle, [Spunge], Nothington, Vanilla Pod, The Bennies, Get Dead, Death By Stereo and, of course, Goldfinger. It's been absolutely incredible. Now as we're getting towards the end of the year, the brothers Smith had yet another incredible band lined up to play London's best venue, the New Cross Inn. Rehasher were in the middle of their first ever UK tour and boy golly I was excited. If you're unaware who Rehasher are, they are Less Than Jake bass player Roger's other band who play fast punk rock songs rather than the ska that has made Less Than Jake famous. I have loved Rehasher since I heard their debut album Off Key Melodies almost fifteen years ago and have excitedly checked out all of their releases since. Emma and I were also lucky enough to catch them live a few years ago when we visited Gainesville for The Fest. Knowing what a big fan I am of both Rehasher and Less Than Jake, Be Sharp's Paul let slip that he was in talks with the band about five months earlier and that blew my mind. When it was finally confirmed at the beginning of October, I actually did a little jump of celebration. This eclipsed any band announcement of the entire year and I excitedly awaited the day to arrive.
Fintan Stack were another band playing only their third gig together. We've also attended the other two, supporting Red City Radio and The Penske File at the New Cross Inn. Before the set I'd been telling some new pals, who had yet to see Fintan Stack, how good they are and how excited I was to see them. Of course they didn't disappoint and during the set the pal told me they they're really good. Fintan Stack are really good at highlighting their strengths, with co-vocalists Adam and Duncan really shining. Both these guys have really powerful voices that work really well together. Some of those harmonies make me so happy. Their two singles Nap All Day, Sleep All Night, Party Never and I'm Done are obvious highlights and I enjoyed having a sing-along to two of my favourite songs of the year but I'm itching for these chaps to get back into the studio and record some more music. Fintan Stack are my favourite new band of 2018.
It's not been long since we last saw Saving Sebastian, playing the Fandangle all dayer at the beginning of the month. I enjoyed them then but this set was when I really got on board with the band. This weekend they were recording some new songs with Fandangle's Andy Baker but jumped at the opportunity to get on this bill. I guess this meant they were at their sharpest musically and it really showed. Now I've never been involved in recording music but I imagine it's quite a tiring process, so for the band to play with as much energy as they did was quite something. These guys weren't stationary for a single second as they blasted through their 2000s inspired pop punk gems. We all know how much I love a band with multiple singers and it works so well with Saving Sebastian's sound – it really amps up the energy even more. They're also such fun to watch on stage as they jump around the stage or, at times, in the crowd. There was a cool moment where Cereal Box Heroes Conor Yates, who was only there as a fan, joined the band on stage for a Blink-182 cover which went down a treat with the New Cross crowd.
And maybe if Rehasher don't come back, Roger will have seen just how incredible the New Cross Inn is and will suggest his other band play an intimate show there instead.
This review was written by Colin Clark. Photos by Emma Prew.