A fine array of melodic rock talent brought down the curtain on HRH AOR V and HRH Mag caught the best of an eventful day.
‘Meet The Singer’ Saturday
It was the day when the main stage simply wasn’t big enough and various frontmen queued up to put themselves at the mercy of the baying masses. First up was former Danger Danger frontman Paul Laine – egged on by his good pal Jack, his various trips to the summit of the main barrier caused palpitations among disbelieving venue security. Michael Monroe upped the ante with two impromptu trips stage left and right before bringing down a VIP sign and capping it all off with an old school crowd surf. Mark Slaughter’s jaunt around the main arena was sedate by comparison but lasted long enough for his band to roll out a competent classic rock melody – and for a long overdue catch-up with UK fans after 26 years away.
Small But Mighty
Those up early enough witnessed the phenomenon that is all-girl trio Haxan – opening up the main stage with a heady blast of old school rock. Bolderson sisters Sam and Charlotte might not be tall enough – or look old enough – to get served at the bar but the band’s raucous riffs dwarf many rivals. And once wasn’t good enough for the Anglo-Welsh three-piece as they returned for a second shot at second stage glory as a last-minute replacement for a late dropout. All hail Haxan.
Sun Shines Brightly
The Radio Sun eared their corn at HRH AOR V. Warming up with some acoustic goodness on Friday, the endearing Aussies unleashed the full force of their feelgood electric set 24 hours later and brought the house down. Ninety minutes later they were back to chaperone the slightly unstable Paul Laine with a super-tight set that perfectly complemented the American singer’s ‘laid back’ approach to performing. If an unstinting work ethic is the new rock and roll then it won’t be long before The Radio Sun eclipse their rivals.
Guns Hit The Target
LA Guns shot a heavy dose of Sunset Strip-inspired sleaze straight through the heart of Camp HRH and watching Phil Lewis and Tracii Guns in tandem again proved to be a true festival highlight. With hatchets buried and the future embraced, could the newly loved-up couple go on to write a second, equally compelling chapter in rock and roll history? In this form here’s hoping a short but deliciously sweet HRH AOR set was just the start of something special.
All Hail HRH AOR VI
Camp HRH bosses have already signed up a series of big-name acts for next year’s AOR jamboree – with the prospect of a brand new announcement very soon. And if any artist still sitting on the fence needed convincing that this is the place to be then a quick conversation with Bang Tango’s Joe Lesté, the irrepressible Paul Laine, various members of The Radio Sun or festival regulars FM – to name but a few – would swiftly persuade them to sign on the dotted line. Once again Camp HRH reinforced its reputation as the place for new bands to break into the big time and old stagers to revive the glory days.
*Exclusive Images Courtesy Of HRH Festivals Photographer Simon Dunkerley