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Breaking Point

Breaking Point
Breaking Point
Photograph courtesy: Tamworth Herald
The Gallery

Musical Genre/Type: Indie-Rock
Formed: 1984

Band Members
Kevin Briggs - Guitar/vocals
Daydo - Bass Guitar/vocals
Jason Farrow - Drums

Other Band Members:
Steve Child - Bass Guitar
Clarke Stewart - Drums
Chris Orton - Drums

Gigs:
06/04/84
Breaking Point
Hardware

Tamworth Arts Centre

11/05/84
BHX
Breaking Point
One On One

Tamworth Arts Centre

07/07/84
Breaking Point
Polesworth Carnival

13/10/84
Breaking Point
Caprice

Tamworth Arts Centre

16/12/84
Breaking Point
Artful Dodger

Tamworth Arts Centre

26/04/85
Breaking Point
The Sway
The Magnets
Tamworth Arts Centre

30/06/85
Breaking Point
The Magnets

27/09/85
Love On Board
Breaking Point
The Royal Family
Tamworth Arts Centre

23/02/86
Breaking Point
Terroa
The Cradle
Spirit Lake
Battle of the Bands
Tamworth Arts Centre

28/02/86
Burnin’ Sky
Breaking Point
Wolfsbane
One On One
Battle of the Bands Final
Tamworth Arts Centre

18/05/86
The Red Beards From Texas
Breaking Point
The Rathole

16/07/86
Breaking Point
Kimberleys

05/12/86
Breaking Point
Attica
The Rathole

27/11/87
Breaking Point
Great Express
The Conspiracy
Tamworth Arts Centre

07/02/87
Battle of the Bands
Rape In Yellow
Kara
Breaking Point
Tamworth Arts Centre

17/07/88
Tamworth Rock Festival
Cuddly Spiders
Rape in Yellow
Future Field
Fetch Eddie
Catch 23
Kraze
Scream Dream
Breaking Point
A5

Castle Grounds
Admission fee 11am-7pm

27/11/87
Breaking Point
Great Express
The Conspiracy
Tamworth Arts Centre

08/09/88
Breaking Point
Tavern in the Town

22/04/90
Korova Milkbar
Breaking Point

Lincolns (The Rathole)

05/09/90
Burton Rock Festival
The Gatecrashers
Satellite Spies
Breaking Point
Scream Dream
Eight Ball Joe

Burton Town Hall

Tamworth Herald Features
Tamworth Herald – 06/04/84
Musicbox – A two-day gigful…!

Breaking PointIT’S going to be a busy weekend for Tamworth’s rock fans, with two major gigs in the town over the next couple of days. Tonight sees ever-popular rock outfit Hardware take to a Tamworth stage for the first time this year, when they will be joined by new trio Breaking Point in an exciting-looking double-bill at the Arts Centre.

And the Arts Centre will be under the spotlight again tomorrow (Saturday) when One on One will team up with Lichfield group Artful Dodger in another potentially enjoyable evening.

Tonight’s concert looks interesting for a number of reasons. Hardware who still have a loyal following in the town, will be making their first Arts Centre performance in many months and will also be parading their new drummer Rob Horne for the first time.

The band, who many will remember for their triumphant headlining performance at last year’s ourdoor rock festival, have a well-balanced set of their own material which has a broad appeal along rock lines.

Their support band, Breaking Point, look equally intriguing. Although they have already played at the Tavern in the Town, tonight’s show is likely to be the first time most people will have had the opportunity to see them in action.

Comparison

The trio, Kevin Briggs on guitar and vocals, Steve Child bass and vocals and Clarke Stewart on drums, have a sound that has been compared to that of U2 and the Alarm.

Although this makes their sound quite raunchy, the band still have basic rock roots, with Kevin formerly a member of Java and Steve of Wild Child.

Breaking Point have promised a set packed full of original numbers, and with their variety of influences they look certain to appeal to a wide cross-section of the town’s music followers.

Just 24 hours after this double bill, the town’s premier venue, will welcome One on One, the band featuring a number of top well-known musicians from bands such as Omen and Ethis.

Mainstream

One on One have already built up quite a reputation for their quite original brand of rock, which encompasses influences from The Pretenders to more mainstream rock sounds.

Support group Artful Dodger come with a good pedigree from their native Lichfield where they have already built up a large following.

Both Arts Centre gigs kick off at around 8pm with entrance to Hardware being a pound and to One on One just 50p.

Both gigs look equally enjoyable so if you are in a quandary as to which to attend the solution is simple – go to both!

Sam Holliday

Tamworth Herald – 13/04/84
Musicbox – Pounding, Punching Powerful!
Breaking Point/Hardware – Arts Centre

When you go to see a new band for the first time it is normally dangerous to either dismiss or praise them on the strength of just one performance.

Many local groups need to be heard several times to be fully appreciated – and it takes a very special band indeed to have an immediate, over-powering impact.

But such a band is Breaking Point. After just 45 minutes in their company, I was left quite breathless after a show which exuded energy, style and power from start to finish.

With the impact of a giant cannon ball crashing into a china shop, Breaking Point took to the stage with a dynamism and fire that is sadly lacking in most Tamworth bands.

Their original and melodious sound soon became irresistible and the trio’s undoubted enthusiasm quickly transferred itself to the paying customers – many of whom clearly had never seen the band before.

The sound is similar to the new wave/rock crossover spearheaded by the likes of U2, The Alarm and Big Country. Based mainly round infectious melodies, they use stirring guitar breaks, pounding rhythms and airpunching lyrics, slaying the audience into voluntary submission.

Sparkle

At times the music does slip into ancient rock riffs but no sooner do they start to lose their sparkle when they hit straight back with anthemic numbers like “My Love Lies Bleeding”, “Run For Your Life” and “Fighting For the Gods”.

But the best number of all was saved right until the end, “The Ode To Nicholas Romanov” closed their set and was both exciting and very moving, making it without doubt the best new song I have heard a local band perform in a long time.

It was simply magnificent and I for one will be waiting with excitement to see them perform that and many of their other fine numbers when they take to the Tavern in the Town stage next Thursday. A band to support, a band to enjoy and a band for the future.

After the sheer delights of Breaking Point I felt Tamworth’s die-hard, enthusiastic rockers, Hardware would prove to be a little of an anti-climax.

But to their eternal credit the band soon won over the audience – many of whom were Hardware’s loyal clan-like followers – and they turned in a set which showed that the passing years had not dented their enthusiasm, drive and sheer enjoyment at making rock music.

Triumphant

Unfortunately the band had to pack in after around half an hour when illness forced one of their members to retire. The band promised to re-appear at the Arts Centre when everything is back to normal and judging by their determination to regain the crown as Tamworth’s top rock band, it promises to be another triumphant night for the fans.

So an evening of disappointment for Hardware but 100 per cent success for Breaking point. Leading into one of their cover versions U2’s “I Will Follow”, Breaking point’s lead singer Kevin Briggs said “Thank God for U2”.

Looking at the trio’s potential in Tamworth terms it is really a case of thanks God for Breaking point. See them as soon as you can – you cannot fail to be impressed.

SAM HOLLIDAY

Tamworth Herald – 11/05/84
Musicbox - All set for ‘big three’ sell out

THREE OF Tamworth’s top bands will tonight (Friday), converge on the Arts Centre to play a special charity concert.

The bands – BHX, One On One and Breaking Point – have all volunteered to give their services free in aid of the Marie Curie Fund aiming to fight cancer.

And with tickets costing just 50p, it means that local people can do their bit for charity – and have a great night out in the process.

The idea to do a charity concert came from top rockers BHX, who will tonight be aiming to re-state their case that they are Tamworth’s most popular heavy band.

The quartet, who recently gave a fine show alongside glam rockers The Sumo Giants, ahev a varied, melodious rock sound that many local punters have likened to Rush. The group who are getting more ambitious with every gig, will probably headline tonight’s show which begins at around 8pm.

Alongside BHX are One On One who have been steadily building up a following since they launched they launched themselves on the area earlier this year.

Much praise

One On One’s sound, although rock orientated, has a feel all of its own which distances them somewhat from the straight rock sound that some people have tried to confer on them.

Their recent show at the Arts Centre brought widespread praise, and they will be keen to keep up the momentum when they step out for tonight’s performance.

Also aiming to keep up the momentum are the excellent Breaking Point, who, after just two viewings, have convinced me that they are potentially the best band in Tamworth.

With passion

The trio play a set of nearly all their own material packed full of rousing guitar breaks, sing-along choruses and that vital spark of passion that can send shivers through an audience.

They are Tamworth’s answer to the Alarm, U2 and New Model Army, and I would urge anyone who likes bite and feeling in their music to come along and cheer them tonight.

All three bands have a lot to offer, and with a worthy cancer charity standing to benefit, Tamworth’s rock fans should pack out the Arts Centre and make it a night to remember.

SAM HOLLIDAY

Tamworth Herald – 18/05/84
Musicbox - Crowd savours this platter of treats
BHX/One On One/ Breaking Point

TAMWORTH’S music fans turned out of force on Friday night to give a bumper boost to a leading local charity.

For the Arts Centre was packed to near capacity to enjoy the special charity gig which was held in aid of the Marie Curie Fund for fighting cancer.

And the reward for Tamworth’s big-hearted music followers was a varied and highly enjoyable gig by three of the town’s best groups.

Opening the proceedings were the spirited Breaking Point, who had to battle not only against a fairly rock-orientated audience, but also some terrible sound problems.

The latter hampered the trio’s set from the beginning but despite this, the sheer awesome power and passionate delivery that characterise the band still shone through. Newer numbers like ‘Resurrection’ fitted in comfortably by ‘old’ favourites such as ‘My Love Lies Bleeding’ and the apocalyptic ‘Nicholas Romanov’ which still sends a shiver down my spine every time I hear it.

After the gig, Breaking Point were clearly very unhappy because of their sound problems – but the crowd still loved it and gave the band one of the best receptions ever.

Next up were One on One and although I prefer Breaking Point’s songs and style, I have to admit that they were the real show-stealers on the night.

Playing with a relaxed air of confidence, they delivered a set which had the audience mesmerised and the compliments flying round the room.

Musically they have no equals in the town, from the solid drumming of Stuart Blaine to the sheer skill and inventiveness of guitarist Tim Latham. For me the real icing on the cake is still the cool and harmonious vocal work of Dave Ingham, who seems to get better and more confident with every show.

How long Tamworth will be able to keep One on One remains to be seen for I have no doubt that sooner rather than later, someone is going to pluck them out of the town and make them very, very big indeed.

In the meantime just enjoy them while you can…

Thundering

Completing Friday’s line up were the gig organisers BHX, who brought their own original brand of rock to the still-enthusiastic Arts Centre crowd.

BHX turned in their normal high-powered selection of thundering heavy numbers and more gently melodious rock numbers. They have come on in leaps and bounds recently and now look like a total rock package.

They have sharpened up their image (always important in these look-conscious days) and they have become a tighter, more accessible outfit.

Perhaps they could have shortened their set somewhat – we had to wait until the encore to hear the excellent ‘Superstar’ – but that apart, they played a crowd-pleasing and entertaining set which has probably gained them even more followers.

So closed a highly-successful night which was good for the bands, goof for the crowds and, best of all, good for the Marie Curie Cancer Fund.

With the success of this one, it strikes me we ought to have more charity concerts…

Tamworth Herald – 10/08/84
Musicbox - A real night to remember
None But The Brave/Breaking Point – Tamworth Arts Centre
OK, I will stick my neck out – this was probably the most exciting concert I have ever seen in Tamworth.

Over the past four or five years, I have seen many memorable concerts – the first Fretz gig, Breaking Point at the Tavern, Reliants at The Guild Hall for example – but none have ever made my spine tingle more than the two acts who stepped out at the Arts Centre one Friday night recently.

Both bands turned the amps up, turned their sights on the audience and then turned on the style in a show that made an almost numbing impact.

First, Breaking Point, who were bursting with confidence after a hugely successful show the night before at Nuneaton. With real gusto and energy, they played the best I have ever seen them, to rapturous – and long overdue – acclaim.

Kevin Briggs gave a truly passionate vocal performance, screaming out the words of the frenzied ‘Emergency’ with a feeling that was almost too real. His guitar sound was spot on and with Daydo in racy, powerful form on his brutal bass, the effect was the sort of layered forceful sound rarely achieved by a trio.

‘Ode to Nicholas Romanov’, ‘Resurrection’ and the beautifully simple ‘Love Lies Bleeding’ wormed their way into the ears of the enthralled audience before the band stopped dead and left the stage.

An encore was called for, an encore was given and Breaking Point left the stage safe in the knowledge that they had done everything they could have done to win over the crowd. The best band in Tamworth? No danger.

After a short break. None But The Brave hit the stage and the excitement reached fever pitch. The band dazzled and distracted the crowd with their original, twisting and multi-faceted musical backdrop.

They gave a tight, very powerful set complemented perfectly by an eye-opening visual show. Engulfing dry ice, flashing lights and very evocative stage movements, showed that bands who work on the eyes often work better on the ears.

Particularly impressive was vocalist Sean Purcell who brought his wide-ranging voice down to bear on a variety of songs from direct U2 type anthems to the more sophisticated Death Cult style numbers which the group clearly felt more at home with.

The highlight of the set was saved right until the end when vocalist Sean was left alone on the stage singing the immensely powerful and moving ‘ Tomorrow Belongs To Me’. It is a number that was stolen by the Hitler Youth as a propoganda weapon and for that reason alone has quite a haunting feel. Carefully synchronised, flashing bombs marked the end of the set and None But The Brave received a much-earned crescendo of applause.

They will be again in the future and I for one intend to be there. Gigs like this are a rarity to be savoured, so don’t miss either of the bands the next time you get the chance.

SAM HOLLIDAY

Tamworth Herald 14/12/84
Musicbox – Noisy carollers raise the roof
BOTH Breaking Point and Sitting Pretty will this week play their special Christmas Party gigs. Breaking Point will line up alongside popular Lichfield act Artful Dodger on Sunday and Sitting Pretty fans will have to wait until Thursday to hear their Christmas good tidings.

Pretty’s Arts Centre gig will be unique for a number of reasons. Not only will the band selling videos and tapes on the night but they will also be coordinating, a strange Christmas Carol Service by many of Tamworth’s local musicians.

People as varied as Mike Turner (Sitting Pretty), Brian Lacey (The Parade) and myself will join together in a series of traditional carols while a hat goes round for donations.

All the money raised will go straight to the Ethiopian appeal and any local musicians that want to help by joining in this most original of carol services is urged to come along on the night.

As well as the carol service the night will feature Sitting Pretty playing a host of new seasonal tunes and dynamic young trio The Parade – currently doing well in the Musicbox poll.

Farewell

Breaking PointThe night of fun starts at 7.30pm and everyone is urged to be early. For Breaking point their farewell to 1984 comes this Sunday and it will probably be the first time many fans have seen new powerhouse drummer Chris Orton in action.

Chris, formerly of Wild Child, has helped to instil a fresh power into the band and they are hoping to play several new numbers to make it a night to remember.

“1984 has gone pretty well for us and we are now confident that ’85 can be even better,” said Breaking Point vocalist Kevin Briggs.

So, two unmissable concerts which should put you really in the mood for a noisy, happy Christmas.

Tamworth Herald – 01/02/85
Musicbox – TOWN’S OWN BAND AID PROVES SUCCESS
ALTHOUGH Musicbox has decided not to do a full scale review of last week’s Ethiopia concert, we would like to take the opportunity to praise everyone involved in the epic event.

All the organisers did a superb job but their task was made all the more easy by six bands who showed an unselfish and very co-operative desire to make the event run as smoothly as possible.

Hence the times were adhered to, the bands performed with enthusiasm and every one of the acts played well.

The Royal Family delighted everyone who saw them, Breaking Point turned in perhaps their greatest set ever (no small feat) and there were also rave reviews for all the bands with a special mention going to Love On Board who really turned on the style.

So for every person that helped to make the event such a success Musicbox can only say a sincere ‘well done’. It’s not very often we can feel so proud to live in Tamworth, but last Tuesday night we certainly could.

Tamworth Herald – 22/02/85
Musicbox – Shock waves on battleground
Smashing time as riot hits stage

TOMORROW night Tamworth Arts Centre will play host to the final of the keenly-fought ‘Battle of the Bands’ contest.

The final, featuring five groups will be the culmination of four strong heats, the last of which is at the Arts Centre tonight (Friday),

Already the contest has attracted great interest and has been packed full of surprises and controversy.

It all began last Thursday when three very different acts – Dance Stance, One On One and The Original Royal Family took to the stage.

Controversy started to rage however, when one of the five judges was disqualified for walking out half-way through the gig of the last band The Royal Family. The disqualification gave One On One a clear victory, making them the first band into the final – and therefore the Bank Holiday rock festival.

Overflowing

Twenty-four hours later at the Arts Centre a packed-to-overflowing audience saw an amazing four-band contest. Childs Play opened the proceedings with their former guitarist, who had been dragged out of the bar because their normal player had disappeared!

The shock continued when Vicious Malicious – an unholy alliance of Select Elect and The Elusive They took to the stage and proceeded to smash up guitars and tape recorders as well as run riot with a chainsaw. The word was bizarre. All part of the act, of course.

And, if that wasn’t enough of a culture shock to the audience, then the new Pulsebeat, who after starting cautiously, had the whole crowd on their feet with some brilliant, individual guitar playing.

By now nothing could be surprising – but last band Scarab almost were. They came on and gave a blinding show bashing out 100mph rock anthems which sent their loyal fans into a state of acute frenzy. They threw in volcano-style fireworks, flashing lights and fake blood to provide a riveting performance. Needless to say they won, so booking their automatic place in tomorrow’s final.

The third heat was held last night (Thursday) and one of the following four acts will be in tomorrows final – Ideal Standard, Spirit of Water and Sitting Pretty.

The final heat will be tonight when Breaking Point, BHX, Sacred Oath and Caprice will battle it out.

Each of the acts has a lot going for them and predicting the result is extremely difficult.

BHX have proved their status by being offered several dates all round the country; Sacred Oath are now back fresher and more determined; Caprice get more confident with every gig and Breaking Point are Breaking point.

Surpassed

Don’t forget there will also be a place in tomorrow’s final for the highest scoring runner-up during the whole contest.

On the first two heats, Childs Play and Pulsebeat both with 59 points held second equal though it is likely that this total will be surpassed tomorrow night.

So an extraordinary night is in prospect. The finalists will be given only 20 minutes to impress the judges that they are Tamworth’s top band. The overall winner will be invited to play at the Young People’s Arts festival night in March where they will also be presented with their winning trophy.

Saturday’s final starts at around 8pm and entry is 60p. it is going to be packed to the rafters so people are advised to arrive early to enjoy this potentially tremendous occasion.

SAM HOLLIDAY

Tamworth Herald – 01/03/85
Musicbox – Cream of the bands surfaces in fine battle
LAST SATURDAY saw the climax of one of Tamworth’s biggest ever rock contests – with the trio, Breaking Point, being hailed as the town’s top band.

Fore the past fortnight, Tamworth’s music scene has been monopolised by the “Battle of the Bands” competition. It has been a full-blown fight between 16 competitors to find out the cream of the local groups.

After a series of heats which have seen musicians smashing up their instruments on stage, lead singers “bleeding” fake blood, a judge being disqualified for seeking refuge in the bar during the heat of the action and the Arts Centre filled to the brim night after night, there was no knowing what would appeal to the judges of the final.

Breaking Point did. The three musicians delivered a potent package with professional verve. Where other bands leaned heavily on the impact of barrages of sound, they concentrated on detail. Vocals were clear and rhythm and bass powerful and gripping.

Breaking Point were awarded 88 points out of a possible 100 and will receive their trophy at the Young People’s Arts Festival night later this month.

Five bands qualified for the last leg of this sonic spectacular. The five brought with them the crowds of faithful fans who were packed like sardines into the rainbow-lit auditorium.

Unlike sardines they represented five wildly different types of music. The discrepancies of opinion in the audience were mirrored in the judges’ panel…each judge showed a tendency towards extreme reaction to the bands – they loved them or hated them.

Poor imitation

Joint fifth place went to BHX and Spirit of Water. BHX were the first to perform and it was a disappointing start to the evening. The band were a poor imitation of some of the more forgettable heavy-metal groups.

No matter how much the vocalist screamed and bawled, he didn’t manage to put himself over at all. I did detect a melody at one point but it fizzled out pretty soon beneath the drummer’s monotonous onslaught. I hear BHX have a national tour on the cards. Perhaps they were having an off night?

I was surprised that Spirit of Water didn’t do better. There was plenty of variety in their performance and the group had the advantage of a talented vocalist. They were seen at their best in their final number called The Fox.

One On One were placed next. They produced a well rounded sound though unfortunately the performance was a little disturbed by microphone trouble.

The outrageous Scarab were the runners-up. If there had been a prize for the highest number of decibels achieved, they certainly would have won. After the fireworks, the fake blood, the amazing verbal ad-libbing from the band and the blatant flouting of the 20-minute time limit. I scarcely noticed the music. But frenzied fans seemed to like it. And that, as the lead singer pointed out in no uncertain terms, is what it’s all about.

Tamworth Herald – 19/04/85
Musicbox – Try an exciting triple
NEXT THURSDAY any local music fan who is not at the Arts Centre should be ashamed.

For on that night Tamworth’s top venue stages a gig that is nothing short of enticing.

Just for starters there is the Battle of the Bands winners Breaking Point who will be dishing out their tremendous powerplay for the first time since winning the ‘Battle’ accolade.

Then we have the much-vaunted Sway who will be making their debut Tamworth performance after opening their concert-account recently at JB’s, Dudley.

And just to complete this tasty trio we have the return to the scen of Tamworth’s oldest outfit, The Magnets.

The exciting triple bill looks set to be a sell-out and should prove important for all three outfits.

For Breaking Point the only thing they now have left to prove is – can they get better?

There should be a chance to find out when new material will be thrown in to supplement the already established classics that we all know and love.

For The Magnets they have to prove that there is still life left in a band many people thought would never last 12 months, let alone five years.

It is the band’s first full show since August and in many senses it will be just like starting over again for Andy and the lads.

One person who will have more than a passing interest in the Magnets’ performance is the former member Rikk Quay who plays with his latest outfit The Sway. Here is a band that has promised a lot and will no doubt deliver with the same belief and conviction.

So a gig not to be missed, which – at just 75p – is not going to be the breaking point of anyone’s finances.

Tamworth Herald – 19/04/85
Musicbox – Try an exciting triple
NEXT THURSDAY any local music fan who is not at the Arts Centre should be ashamed.

For on that night Tamworth’s top venue stages a gig that is nothing short of enticing.

Just for starters there is the Battle of the Bands winners Breaking Point who will be dishing out their tremendous powerplay for the first time since winning the ‘Battle’ accolade.

Then we have the much-vaunted Sway who will be making their debut Tamworth performance after opening their concert-account recently at JB’s, Dudley.

And just to complete this tasty trio we have the return to the scen of Tamworth’s oldest outfit, The Magnets.

The exciting triple bill looks set to be a sell-out and should prove important for all three outfits.

For Breaking Point the only thing they now have left to prove is – can they get better?

There should be a chance to find out when new material will be thrown in to supplement the already established classics that we all know and love.

For The Magnets they have to prove that there is still life left in a band many people thought would never last 12 months, let alone five years.

It is the band’s first full show since August and in many senses it will be just like starting over again for Andy and the lads.

One person who will have more than a passing interest in the Magnets’ performance is the former member Rikk Quay who plays with his latest outfit The Sway. Here is a band that has promised a lot and will no doubt deliver with the same belief and conviction.

So a gig not to be missed, which – at just 75p – is not going to be the breaking point of anyone’s finances.

Tamworth Herald – 19/04/85
Musicbox – Grabbed…by gutsy rock
Breaking PointI CAN STILL remember the first time I heard Breaking Point’s debut demo. It had me recharged with belief and hope for Tamworth’s music scene and I felt the whole town should go and buy the tape. And I feel exactly the same about this demo.

Quite simply, it is magnificent and is so full of potential that you can just sense the imminent arrival of something very big indeed. What makes it so good is the sheer tour-de-force of the music.

Jealous cynics often dismiss Wolfsbane as tarted-up rock parodies but on this tape all you get is the sheer guts of their rock and roll which is spellbinding.

It leaps out of the cassette deck and grabs you by the neck and rubs your nose in the splendid power of their sound.

Take ‘G.S.B’ a catchy chorus, a Hanoi Rocks guitar line, a thumping melody and a wonderful middle section – just four reasons why ‘G.S.B.’ means great stuff boys to my ears.

Entertaining

“Manhunt” and “The Followers” are also powerful, dynamic and entertaining but the best of all is the rousing “Clutching at Straws”. Here vocalist Blaze Bayley sings with an emotion most ‘rock’ singers would be too embarrassed to attempt.

Throw in another catchy tune (a Wolfsbane hallmark) and best of all a tear-jerking Jase the Ace guitar solo and you have a masterpiece to be put alongside “Ode to Nicholas Romanov”, “Wine and Roses”, “A Kind of Loving” and “Silent World” is the best ever vocal song section.

The excitement I feel about this tape is boundless. Wolfsbane have the live presence, the image and the charisma to go a long way. Now they have the tape to set them off. Put me on the guest list for the Birmingham Odeon lads!

Tamworth Herald – 02/05/85
Musicbox – WORDS FAIL ME AS THE HEROES SERVE AN ACE
Caption: Breaking Point…welcome to the pleasuredome.Breaking Point/The Magnets – Tamworth Arts Centre

IT IS NOT VERY often that I step out of a rock concert lost for words.

Mere adjectives were unable to sum up how I felt about this performance from Breaking Point.

Support act The Magnets were excellent themselves, but Breaking point were simply…incredible. I almost felt like weeping towards the end of their set as their magnificent power and purity swept over me like a rush of hope, and it was at this stage that I realised this band should be immortalised.

So what is so good about them? Well, everything, they have the sharpest ear for a good melody I have ever heard and anyone that does not find the hook of “Come The Day” or “Guns of Ambergold” irresistible must be deaf.

Also, they push the barriers of speed and power to new lengths, finishing one song bursting with energy and then going straight into another which is just as hard and uplifting.

Throw in superb musicianship all round, (Chris Orton drummed with a force and ANGER I have never witnessed in the town) and an excellent reaction from the crowd and you have a gig that to me could not be bettered.

Last Thursday, Breaking Point stepped out of being merely my favourite local band, now they join The Stranglers, Springsteen, Paul Weller and Joe Strummer as my heroes.

For The Magnets they probably had more to prove than Kevin, Daydo and Chris but they did just as well in their own way.

After starting nervously (to be expected after a six-match lay-off) but they got better and better and earned an enthusiastic response from the appreciative fans.

Pleasure

They played with the sort of spirit and sheer pleasure that was endearing to watch and exciting to listen to.

They looked good, and tighter, and displayed some of the youthful exuberance that convinces me they are going to enter an exciting new chapter in their history.

Some of the older more simplistic numbers have been replaced by tracks of sheer quality like “Breath on Breath” and the stupendous “No Crime” which had Andy Baldwin singing with Jim Foetus emotion and power.

Also improving the sound is Clive’s transference to the bass which increases the visual as well as aural appeal of the band and also releases Gary Garry to play some more innovative keyboards.

Throw in some much-improved and often delightful syn-drum playing by Martin Woodings and you have a band playing crisp, tight, modern pop which is refreshing to hear and hopeful to think about.

So, a gig to beat most – if not all – gigs I have seen in months. They were bands steering along very different paths but both aiming and hitting the same target – sheer unadulterated entertainment.

Tamworth Herald – 02/05/85
Musicbox – Gossipbox
Buttercup’s blooming…
IS BUTTERCUP the oldest swinger in town? This was the question on everyone’s lips this week when the Tavern in the Town’s beloved DJ announced to the world he had just had his 37th birthday.

Buttercup, who has fine musical taste, is delighted at the thought that he may be the oldest local musical fan around – and he is certainly one of the most ardent.

At last week’s Breaking Point concert he nearly cried (along with me) with joy and he didn’t look a day over 36. So happy birthday Buttercup and unless Gossipbox hears otherwise, I hereby declare you Tamworth’s Oldest Hip Swinger. Long may you reign…

SAM HOLLIDAY

Tamworth Herald – 10/05/85
Musicbox – Wolfish thrills in the dark
If the idea of being a critic is to go along to a gig, let the band buy you drinks and then massacre them in print – as some people seem to think – that I’d better give up…

How can you massacre anyone when the bands are as good as the last couple I have seen? Breaking Point had me flying higher than the average Space Shuttle and now THIS.

Wolfsbane, were bold, brazen, broody and brilliant. In a dark, seedy, sweaty atmosphere Wolfsbane towered above the gloom to turn in a show that could have left less-inspired bands in the audience ready to split up on the spot out of sheer despondency.

Thrilling

They had everything. And more. At one stage all the lights packed in and yet they turned a power failure into an exciting new song as Blaze Bayley led the excited crowd in a series of arm-punching chants, which Marilyn Monroe look-a-like J.F. Bombshell would up as many people as he possibly could.

I mean nobody but nobody should be able to make a power cut thrilling but then again Wolfsbane aren’t nobodies. In fact I think I enjoyed Wolfsbane’s power cut more than I enjoy most people’s sets.

And when the lights came back up – belters like ‘G.S.B.’ the tumultuous “Sold Our Songs” and a terrific smash-and-crash song where Bayley declared he was an axe-wielding maniac hit the audience with the effect of a tidal wave of power.

The crowd loved every second of it. Thos of us who thought we were too cool to act stupid felt secretly jealous of the dozens that did and it was clear where Wolfsbane’s affections lay. Anyone that dared not sing along, jump in the air or get excited was put down in some of the crudest terms outside a Manchester United terrace.

Insulted

It was all quite Sex Pistolian actually. Sweating like madmen, the band insulted theor audience, made them feel excited to the point of mild hysteria and refused to let up the sheer venom of their sound.

I had to leave as the encores began because I simply couldn’t handle it anymore. It was just so good, so powerful and so completely entertaining that I just had to get out before I lost my cherished cynicism forever.

All I can say is, I feel sorry for the next band I have to review. After crying out ,y left eye for Breaking Point and out of my right eye for Wolfsbane, I have no tears left and I am all set for a savage anti-reaction next time.

Finally let me say thank you Wolfsbane. You gave me – and scores of others – a night which we are unlikely to forget for a very long time. Long may you continue to slay, destroy and massacre everyone that dares to watch you.

SAM HOLLIDAY

Tamworth Herald – 31/05/85
Musicbox – GOSSIPBOX
Let’s start with some great news – Breaking Point are finally coming under record company scrutiny. Their new demo (reviewed shortly) has caught somebody’s eye and we at Musicbox hope that somebody is a rich and powerful record company boss…

TALKING of the rich and powerful, the Folk Circus may be changing their name. According to ever-enthusiastic Norman Yates, people automatically switch off when they hear the word folk. Sorry, Norman what was that you said?

IF enthusiasm is the question, Rikk Quay is the answer. It seems Rikk and his fellow Sway-ers are to be interviewed on Radio West Midlands. Don’t touch that dial boys…

AND finally on the subject of vicars (??) shooting from the hip, keyboard player Derek Goodwin has been cast as one in a play. It will be the wild and wasted warrior’s first acting performance, but according to my sources, Marlon Brando isn’t too worried about the competition.

Tamworth Herald – 07/06/85
Musicbox – Good, but not good enough
Breaking Point (demo)
PREPARE yourselves for a shock.

Regular Musicbox readers will be well aware that for the past 12 months, I have given more compliments and praise to Breaking Point than most husbands give their wives ina lifetime. But today – for the first time – the superlatives will be kept to (almost) a minimum. Now don’t get me wrong, this demo is still light years ahead of most other releases I have heard recently but I just can’t help feeling this could have been so much BETTER. Where I was expecting a major classic all I got was a minor one and I must admit to my first sense of disappointment in my 12 months love affair with Breaking Point.

The main problems is basically the sound. My copy at least sounds like it was recorded deep in Buttercup’s armpit and that is hardly the place to get the best sounds.

This is very sad because the songs beneath the grind are of course quite brilliant. But, if you’re trying to sell yourselves, the sound MUST be as pure as the songs. A record company executive listening to this with a hangover may well think ‘good tune’ but will be so put off by the sound that he will bin the tape regardless. As I say, very, very sad.

Songwise, although I feel ‘The Phoenix’ is a strange choice for an ‘A’ side track, it is still a very powerful number. Kevin Briggs tones down his normal aggressive voice to give a touch of the ‘Bono’s’ to a song that is a typically, thumping piece of powerplay. ‘Guns of Ambergold’ is of course a love favourite but once again the sound mixing tends to muffle an essentially simple, powerful outburst that boasts a joyous chorus.

And finally, we have the song about John Lennon, the catchy ‘Breaking The Rules’. This sounds like a baby produced by the fusion of U2 and The Alarm and is very enjoyable despite the train that seems to be running on my copy of the track.

So, in conclusion, I was disappointed by this tape. Apart from Wolfsbane and Dream factory’s most recent releases, I can’t think of anything in the same league but it is not half as exciting as the band’s first tape – or any of their gigs.

It is now time for Breaking Point to go for broke and throw caution – and money – to the wind. Hey should go into a studio – as good studio – and record ‘Ode to Nicholas Romanov’ and ‘Emergency’ as a debut single. It is time the band took that firm decision to go for the big once because I am convinced they are good enough to go right to the top, but tapes like this won’t help that cause.

Tamworth Herald – 26/07/85
Musicbox – GOSSIPBOX
Also still alive and kicking are Breaking Point – who very nearly reached their own breaking point last week. Following a dramatic post-gig row, drummer Chris walked out on the band and their future looked in serious doubt. But guitarist Kevin and Daydo reconciled their differences and the band once again started to breathe.

Tamworth Herald – 02/08/85
Musicbox – Anyone for stardom?
A NUMBER of bands have contacted MUSICBOX in the hope of recruiting new members. So if you have nothing to do and fancy a trip on the road to stardom give the numbers below a ring. After all you never know what you are missing until you try it out…

THE DREAM FACTORY want a trumpeter. The band (in case you live on the moon and don’t know) play hard-edged soul music that has earned them a local – and national reputation – for being one of the most exciting prospects on the current music scene. On the verge of recording a new single, the band want a trumpeter willing to give a lot of time and energy to the band.

LOVE ON BOARD also want someone who can play the trumpet – but they want something a bit more. They are hoping their trumpeter will also be able to do bits of percussion, keyboards and other instruments, making him an all-round utility musician to top off their lively modern pop.

BREAKING POINT are still looking for a permanent drummer to complete their line-up. They have a stand-in to help them through the transitional period but they want to find someone permanent as soon as possible.

TORTURED ARTISTS, a band from outside the Tamworth area but who would be interested to hear from someone local, have sent out an appeal for a vocalist into music which lists such varied influences as Billy Idol, U2, Sex Pistols, Dire Straits, Van Halen and Joy Division.

Tamworth Herald – 30/08/85
Musicbox – Baby, what a day…
LTTLE Lisa Day celebrated her first birthday on Monday when her dad was playing with the popular Breaking Point.

Lisa (right) was born on the day her dad last played at the festival and this time she decided to come and have a look for herself at what it was that caused ‘Daydo’ to miss her birth.

And judging by Lisa’s smile, she certainly likes what she sees.

Tamworth Herald – 06/09/85
Musicbox – GOSSIPBOX
Now Breaking Point are Smoke-bound…
THE wonderful Breaking Point have been lined up for their first major London gig with the highly-rated rock band Torme. Torme have a huge following and play ‘straight to the head’ rock, ensuring a major event for Breaking Point. The gig at the large Walthamstow Hall came about because major acts playing their often look for support acts and loyal Tamworthian Jo-Anne Caulkin is luckily in contact with the promoter involved.

So if your band would like a major London support slot (other bands lined up at the hall are Hawkwind, Alien Sex Fiend and A Certain ration) give me a copy of your tape and biog, and I will send it down…

Tamworth Herald – 13/09/85
Musicbox – Mr. Nice Guy turns nasty
EVERYONE who has ever been involved in Tamworth’s music scene – including me knows only too well that there are a lot of people who don’t like what we are trying to do. These people can normally be categorised in to well-defined groups, but today I have to tell you we have a new and unexpected critic.

Mike Turner, the Sitting Pretty singer, has revealed his real thoughts about Tamworth, the local music scene and the people who try and organise it, in a new and exciting fanzine “Anarchy in Wonderland” (which is excellent and will be reviewed at length later).

According to Mike Turner the whole scene is appalling and all but three or four bands deserve ‘shooting’.

He cites Wolfsbane as being ‘pathetic’, Love On Board as ‘embarrassing’ and Breaking Point as ‘HM liars’. He says last year’s rock festival was a shambles – win which Sitting Pretty were light years ahead of anyone else – and he claims he doesn’t want to stay in Tamworth any more.

Nowhere

“As soon as we make it and get out of Tamworth I ain’t bothered if we ever play here again, Tamworth is a nowhere land,” he writes. Now personally I don’t care what people say about the music scene when they are outside it, but Mike Turner should realise he owes EVERYTHING to Tamworth.

Sitting Pretty are about as well known as the Chinese foreign minister outside the town, and in the past a lot of bands have worked hard with the group to help Mike Turner on route to his so called fame’.

He was given a prestigious spot in this year’s ‘shambles’ festival, and was also involved in TamAid so how he can use the town and then abuse it is beyond me. I am sure a lot of people will be very angry at what he has said.

As editor of Musicbox, I feel rather betrayed by Mike’s attitude. He reckons he never reads Musicbox anymore, yet he is without doubt the most written-about person since I took on the column – mainly because of his ability for self-publicity.

It is a real case of “Et tu Brute” and as far as I am concerned, if Sitting Pretty go on to be bigger than The Beatles I don’t want to write another word about them. After all they don’t need Tamworth and that is a fact that won’t escape their dogged fans.

*As the final irony, Sitting Pretty are tomorrow night playing a “Save The Arts Centre” concert. Mike who never reads Musicbox, remember, gave me a large press release, to promote the gig as well as free tickets and in his letter he says how important it is to keep open the Arts Centre.

The irony is that in “Anarchy In Wonderland”, Mike’s description of the Arts Centre is not quite as rosy as in his letter. He calls it a “dive”. Tomorrow’s Save The Dive Concert starts at 8pm.

Sam Holliday

Tamworth Herald – 13/09/85
Musicbox
Breaking Point are organising a coach to their first ever London Show on Sunday October 6th. Tickets are around £5 which includes the coach, admission to the gig with Torme and a few hours in the capital. Book your seat at The Tavern.

Tamworth Herald – 20/09/85
Musicbox – LOVE’S LABOURS ON SHOW…
Love On Board have been lined-up as one of three bands in a special labour Party benefit show at the Arts Centre next week. Love On Board have been lined-up as one of three bands in a special labour Party benefit show at the Arts Centre next week. The gig on Friday, September 27 will feature not only Love On Board (above) but also Breaking Point and The Royal Family in one of the first ever political gigs in the town. More details about this unique Arts Centre line-up in next week’s Musicbox.

Tamworth Herald – 20/09/85
Musicbox – Guide to the gigs
Breaking Point are to play JB’s, Dudley next week, although their prestigious London show is still uppermost in the mind.

The concert at Walthamstow promises to be a major event in itself so the band are lining up a coach to ferry supporters for a capital day out. Tickets cost around £5 and to book your seat , put a £1 deposit sown at the Tavern in The Town, Tamworth.

Tamworth Herald – 27/09/85
Musicbox – TamAid’s genial chief pops up
Midnight guy still smiling
WOULD YOU buy a second-hand demo fro the pictured-above gypsy? No? Well think again, for the gentleman above is none other than Paul Speare, the man who produced TAMAID and also added the sax on the tracks.

Paul is pictured from the inner-sleeve of the last Dexy’s album “Too-Ry-Aye” where our resident Rosie Lee performed on such mega hits as ‘Come On Eileen’ and ‘Jackie Wilson Said’.

The question is how can anyone who has spent hour after hour with that difficult genius Kevin Rowland still be smiling? Questions on a postcard to Expresso Bongo Studios, Lichfield Street, Tamworth.

Warning

A slightly less famous band than Dexys are Gaf The Horse In Tears who have decided to split up. The band, who have made quite an impact in their short career, have decided to change their name, line-up and sound. Ted, Stuart and Robin are staying together and now they are seeking new musicians to build a fresh group altogether.

Bass players and keyboard players are especially welcome…

Also changing are Depth Charge who appear to have recruited the ever-loveable Mick Goodby as lead vocalist. A wise move indeed lads, but just a warning – Mick’s dog is a killer. In a word, AVOID!

Certainly not to avoid are Breaking Point who have completed their line-up by acquiring a new drummer, Jason Farrow. The ex-Wolfsbane, Childs Play amd Lost Johnny drummer has delighted bassist Daydo, who even had a shave by way of a celebration.

“He seems to fit in really well and we are delighted he has joined us,” he said.

Still on joining things, Ian “When does he find time to sleep?” Gibbons has been appointed as the first ever rock representative on the Arts Advisory Council which overseas the Arts Centre. Ian has more devilish tricks to unveil and all will be revealed in the near future.

And finally, a sad farewell this week to Femme Fatale bassist ‘Jean-Jacques’ Higgs who is leaving the area at the weekend to go to college.

According to the handsome man-in-black bassist, he will still be returning occasionally to keep the Femme Fatale ball rolling.

The real question is how will he ever be able to drag himself away from the beautiful, picturesque and completely unviolent (!) City of Coventry?

Tamworth Herald – 27/09/85
Musicbox – Tuning up for Party time…
THE PARTY political conference season may be in full swing, but more unusually Tamworth hosts two party political concerts!

For the Arts Centre is staging a tremendous three-band line-up under the Rock Against The Dole banner, organised and funded by the Tamworth Borough Labour Party.

And just up the road on the same night, Femme Fatale will be joining rock and roll eccentrics Jet Morgan and the Phantoms in a St. John’s Hall show in aid of the Ecology Party.

Both concerts look like being very entertaining but according to a MUISCBOX opinion poll, Labour has a slight percentage lead over the Ecology Party. The reason is that they have Breaking Point, The Royal Family and Love On Board rocking on their behalf.

The Royal Family, who have started to make a name for themselves out of town, bring their inspired lunacy to the Arts Centre at a time when interest in the group is at a new peak. And with love On Board, bringing their bubbling cocktail of talent and enthusiasm to the show it promises to be a night for literally rocking against the blues.

Up the road at the same time, you can rock for the greens with Femme Fatale’s black melancholy sound providing the perfect foil for the rock and roll extravaganza that Jet Morgan and the Phantoms serve up.

Tamworth Herald – 04/10/85
Musicbox - A clash of metal for men of passion
Caption: Breaking Point…ready for their biggest ever challenge. TAMWORTH’S premier passion players Breaking Point were this week putting the final touches to the set of their most important gig ever.

For on Sunday, the talented trio will play alongside heavy metal favourites Torme at London’s Walthamstow Hall.

The prestigious support slot will give Breaking Point the chance to play at a venue which seats 2,000 – and the popularity of the main band ensures that nearly all those seats will be filled.

And even though Breaking Point admit they would rather alongside someone more in line with their musical philosophy, they can’t mask their obvious excitement.

“This is a great break for us and we are obviously going to be nervous on the night,” admitted guitarist Kevin Briggs. “It is certainly our biggest gig yet we hope it will lead to many other gigs.”

Breaking Point will be opening Sunday night’s show to be followed by London-band Elixier and then finally Torme – a group who boast several of the most popular HM musicians in the circuit.

But Breaking Point are being realistic. They know the perils of holding the support slot, a peril increased because their music is so different to that of the main band. In fact they are expecting the worst…

“We don’t expect to go down very well,” said Kevin. “There will be people from Tamworth their supporting us, but I think most of the heavy metals fans may not like us too much.”

The concert will be especially nerve-racking for new drummer Jason Farrow. He ahs only been with the band a matter of weeks and now he is being called on to play a very important gig indeed.

“He has already done JB’s Dudley for us and everything is going well with him so there should be no problems,” said bassist Daydo.

A supporters coach will be travelling to London on Sunday, leaving the Tavern at 2.30pm. Fare around £6.50, people will get a £3 ticket to the gig, transport there and back and a few precious hours in London. The band need the support so why not treat yourself to a day out. It is an important day for Breaking Point – and an important day for Tamworth’s music scene as a whole.

Tamworth Herald – 18/10/85
Musicbox – Only The Sway was left at breaking point!
IAN GIBBONS has been roving outside the town recently watching three of the areas top bands, Breaking Point, The Sway and The Royal Family, take on new audiences in London, Birmingham and Dudley respectively. Here are a few of the comments he made about these very contrasting gigs:

The Royal Family – (playing with hardcore punk band Conflict). Dave Smith looked scared to death and come to think of it, I don’t blame him…The Royal Family firmly stamped their blend of R ‘n’ B on the anarchist punk audience who just looked on spellbound as the band went from strength to strength.

Fun approach

In a night of political anarchistic numbers, the audience really appreciated this type of fun approach and it seemed that every member of the band grew in confidence as the set went on – my only criticism of the band is that I would like to see them write some of their own numbers, but thanks anyway lads for a good night out!

The Sway – Birmingham would not know a good band if it trod them on the foot…It soon became apparent to the band that this was going to be hard work and after their best number “The Sea”, lead singer Chris asked when they would start the bingo which summed up the whole situation perfectly…It seemed a great shame that the small and boring audience didn’t seem to want to listen, but don’t worry lads, the music was fine – though not the ideal sound for a funeral parlour.

Breaking Point – I was left completely overwhelmed by the performance of Daydo and company…Breaking Point looked and sounded hungry and raw, they worked hard for their applause and looked genuinely grateful when they received it. ‘Ode to Nicholas Romanov” was performed with conviction and feeling which in turn produced a strength, power and raunchiness miles above the other two bands that were to follow.

A new band with a Cramps feel sent out an urgent appeal for a new guitarist. The unnamed band can be contacted via Simon Mills.

Tamworth Herald – 08/11/85
Musicbox – A night to remember
Caption: Ian Gibbons…working flat-out to make the event a great success. THE final details about Tamworth’s exciting 12-hour musical marathon for Ethiopia have just been released.

The show on Saturday December 21, will feature among others, The Dream Factory, Wolfsbane, Breaking Point, The Royal Family, The Sway and Femme Fatale.

It will also include the first – and probably the last – live appearance pf ‘TamAid’ and as a whole it promises to be a night which musicians and spectators alike will not forget.

“This is our way of saying thank-you to Bob Geldof, all the artists involved in Band Aid and relief agencies all round the world who are trying their best to stamp out poverty,” said crusading organiser Ian Gibbons.

As many of you may know, the show which can virtually be seen as a festival, is the centre of a nationwide ‘Live Aid’ bonanza which promises to raise thousands of pounds.

On the same night as the Tamworth show, there will be similar gigs all round Britain with around 30 or 40 other towns expected to take part. As an example Leatherhead this week sold out ALL of its 2,000 £8.50 tickets showing just how the idea has caught on nationally.

“Everything is going very well but we must make sure Tamworth which started the whole thing off, id the best of all,” enthused Ian. “It is going to be a brilliant night.”

The show has been given the full support of Band Aid – who have said they will try and fix a rock VIP to visit the town on the day to give the campaign a boost.

Also on the same day, the Ethiopian Committee are calling on all nightclubs, working men’s clubs and a multitude of other organisations to join in a day of action for Ethiopia. Whatever happens it is going to be a night where a lot of money is going to be made for famine victims, and a night when Tamworth can hold its head up high.”

“I am sure we will sell all our tickets in Tamworth, and as it is just £2 for the whole twelve hour show I am sure people will take part in raffles and put money in buckets,” said Ian.

For that meagre £2, people can enjoy the spectacle of not only six brilliant rock bands but also the more diverse sounds of The Banned Wagon and The Trout Brothers. In addition there will be lots of good disco courtesy of Beuwey and the much-loved Buttercup and raffles, speeches and numerous other sidelines.

The doors open on the event at 11.30am and musically it gets off to the most powerful start with Wolfsbane at 1pm. The Banned Wagon appear an hour later, Femme Fatale are set for 3.30pm and then The Trout Brothers hit the stage at 5pm. At 6.30 Breaking point step out to do their passionate parade, and an hour later Rikk Quay and the boys are up on stage. The Dream Factory are due on at around 8.45 and then The Royal Family get into the swing of things at about 10.15, ‘Tam Aid’ are expected to hit the stage after 11.30 to round off a day that already looks exhausting just thinking about it!

Tickets should be available soon from Tamworth Ethiopia Committee members or members of the individual groups. They are expected to sell out quickly so be warned. It is a night which you simply cannot date to miss.

Tamworth Herald – 13/12/85
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point return to Tavern-in-the-Town stage on Monday night when they finish off a special 24-hour pool marathon arranged to raise money for their debut single.

Tamworth Herald – 20/12/85
MUSICBOX – Big hearts fine sounds unite
Tonight we have the excellent Terroa lining up with alternative poet Joolz at the Arts Centre and then tomorrow night at the Assembly Rooms, we have probably the greatest local gig ever seen in Tamworth.

The Dream Factory, Royal Family, Breaking Point, Wolfsbane, The Sway and many more will present a 12-hour Christmas present for the town’s rock fans and the silent millions such concerts are designed to help.

The doors open at 11.30am and after a nice session with that most impressive of DJs Buttercup, it is straight onto Wolfsbane at 1pm.

After the marvellous slice of ear-bashing, there is more disco and then it is the turn of the Banned Wagon to do their bit for charity and musical culture.

Femme Fatale hit the stage at 3.30pm to be followed by the DJ with impeccable taste Beuwey and then it is time for Trout Brothers. By now it will be time for Breaking Point…The Sway…The Dream Factory…The Royal Family.

During the day there is the possibility of a few star guests, new bands, raffles, competitions and fun by the literal bucketful.

Tickets for the event are a mere £2 and that entitles you to come and go as you please – although it would be better if you stayed of course!

It looks like being the best day of the year for the areas music scene, and one which will show that for thousands of people up and down the country the Ethiopia tragedy is still very much on our minds.

On a personal note. I would like to express a vote of thanks to everyone – especially Ian – who has helped to arrange this marvellous weekend.

1986

Tamworth Herald – 10/01/86
Musicbox – Here comes Battle of the Bands
TAMWORTH is to stage its second annual Battle of the Bands contest in February. The event, won last year by Breaking Point, will seek to find the area’s top outfit and will be run over four consecutive Sunday nights at the Arts Centre.

It is hoped there will be a celebrity to judge the final and there is also the possibility of a special prize for the winners along with the traditional festival trophy.

In order to make the event more professional – and give the bands a better chance to show their wares – there will be just 12 groups in the event and just four in the final. If you would like your band included, you must attend a special meeting at the Tavern in the Town this Sunday (January 12) starting at 8pm.

Anyone who does not attend will lose their chance of entering and earning the right to win the best band in Tamworth tag for the rest of ’86.

Tamworth Herald – 17/01/86
Musicbox – Bands tune up for five nights
TAMWORTH’S second annual Battle of the Bands contest looks set to be a great success with 16 groups – some completely new to the scene – taking part. The event has been stretched over five nights, with four heats and a final which will possibly be judged by a celebrity.

And as well as winning the accolade of Tamworth’s best band, and a Young People’s Arts Festival trophy, the successful band will also win £50 worth of recording time at the Expresso Bongo studios.

The whole event will get underway two weeks on Sunday at Tamworth Arts Centre.

Sunday February 2Caprice and Femme Fatale take on the unknown quantities of Coleshill’s Burnin’ Sky and new Anice Byfield group Precious Toys.

Sunday February 9 – The Australians, One On One, Dance Stance and another new one, Drowning Pool.

Sunday, February 16Depth Charge, Wolfsbane, The Me and The Parade.

Sunday, February 23Terroa, Spirit Lake, Judas Cradle and Breaking Point.

Friday February 28 – The Final.

Tamworth Herald – 24/01/86
Musicbox – Rikk Rocks a Happy Cradle

The enigmatic Rikk Quay is back in business – as singer and frontman of new-look outfit, The Cradle.The enigmatic Rikk Quay is back in business – as singer and frontman of new-look outfit, The Cradle.

Rikk, who only left The Sway a fortnight ago, was snatched up by The Cradle immediately. And the rather surprising marriage has pleased both partners.

“I am really happy,” said Rikk. “I went to see them practice and I thought they were tremendous. Now I think we can be even better.”

The Cradle is the new name of Sacred Oath, or more recently, The Judas Cradle. The band had been striving for moths to get rid of their highly inappropriate heavy metal label, and now with Rikk joining, they are hoping to bury the HM ghost forever.

“This finally proved we are not a heavy metal band,” said the always enthusiastic guitarist Paul Keeton. “Now perhaps people will see us in a different light.”

Rikk first noticed Sacred Oath as they were then, when they played a very enjoyable set at last year’s festival. Like many people, he was impressed with their growing maturity over the past 12 months and so when they approached him to join, it didn’t take them long to agree.

“At the practice, they were even better that at the festival, and I am convinced that we can go further now,” said Rikk.

Rikk will be joining The Cradle as lead singer, frontman and keyboard player. It is the first time he will have actually led a band as the main singer, but his on-stage charisma and style ensures that the band will become eminently watchable.

Different

“If he acts anything like he did at the practice, things should be very different indeed for us,” said Paul. “We are all really happy.”

The original…The Cradle had all been going in a Cult Direction, and with the extravagant, fashion-blitzed Rikk joining their image should become much sharper all round. And with his experience and contacts, he will be able to push The Cradle much quicker.

Already he is planning trips to the studio for the band, and it was his idea to drop the ‘Judas’ from the title and thus leave the heavy metal ancestry well behind.

The former Judas Cradle singer Star Trek apparently wanted to continue to play more heavy music. The band admit he will be sadly missed…to scoop one of Tamworth’s hottest properties.

The new band should make their first appearance as the Battle of the Bands on Sunday, February 23, where they will take on the might of Terroa, Breaking Point and Spirit Lake.

Tamworth Herald – 14/02/86
Musicbox – Gossipbox
THE LOVEABLE Freight Train can be heard through the Radio One airwaves tomorrow night on the ‘Saturday live’ show. Apparently the band tickled the fancy of Richard Skinner (in the nicest possible way of course) and for that reason they have earned their slot on tomorrow’s show which kicks off at 5.00pm.

Also very funny is news that the always charming Buttercup is going to do a guest slot with The Cradle at the Battle of the Bands next week. He will apparently be introducing a brand new dance, so it looks like being a night not to miss.

Finally, if you thought running a studio must be a really rock-filled life, well think again. Last week amidst working with Terroa and Breaking Point, Messrs. Spear and Smith, of Expresso Bongo fame, had to record hour after hour of an 11-piece Punjabi folk band. This bizarre outfit cut a whole album at the Expresso Bongo studios, enough to put off the biggest Punjabi folk fan! Personally, I think they ought to now re-name their studios Ali Bongo!!

Tamworth Herald – 21/02/86
Musicbox – Battle of the giants is full of promise
Breaking PointTHE most eagerly-awaited heat of the ‘Battle of the Bands’ blazes into action on Sunday night when the mighty Breaking Point take on the powerful trio of Terroa, The Cradle and Spirit Lake.

The heat has been the source of fierce debate and speculation among local rock fans for some weeks, and with all four bands confident of doing well, the atmosphere promises to be white-hot.

Breaking Point, who of course are holders of the Battle of the Bands trophy, undoubtedly start the heat as favourites – but guitarist Kevin Briggs is not as convinced as some people that their success is assured.

“I honestly think Terroa will win our heat and probably the whole contest,” said Kevin last week, “It should be a very good night.”

Whether Kevin is bluffing or displaying false modesty remains to be seen but there is no doubt that the night looks like being one of the best on the local scene for months.

Kicking off the Arts Centre package will be Terroa. After their excellent show in the MUSICBOX poll – and the recent triumphs of their first demo – things are going very well indeed for the band, and many local rock watchers have tipped them as the band to steal Breaking Point’s ‘Battle of the Bands’ crown.

Lead singer Eddie Madden admits that this puts the band under a pressure they can do without, but they have promised to go all out for victory and with the songs they have chosen to play, they could well do it.

They have also promised a unique start to the show so if you’re not there at 8pm to witness it, that is your fault!

Second up will be Spirit Lake, a band of Davids, who are quietly confident of beating the Goliaths. Built around the songwriting skills of former Spirit of Water leader Dylan, the band contains a host of respected musicians including Norman Yates and Tim Burgess and according to the normally calm Norman the sound that is being produced by the band is very good indeed.

They are the surprise package of the night and for that reason they certainly cannot be dismissed – particularly by the other three bands.

Next up will be the band that has had everybody talking recently; The Cradle. The band who have now buried their former heavy metal tag forever, have taken a walk on the wild side and discovered the likes of The Cult.

They have also discovered Rikk Quay who makes his first appearance as the band’s frontman on Sunday. Rikk (surprise, surprise) is very enthusiastic about it all and has told Terroa and Breaking Point that the game is up – the is The Cradle’s year. To put it mildly they should be very interesting indeed.

And so to Breaking Point, the last band in the whole competition and the one most people feel will become the first band. The group, who recently recorded a tantalising demo, are as determined and buoyant as ever, and they will aim to take the contest by storm.

Knowing Breaking Point I think they will, but like most people, I am not going to bet on anyone.

So a concert you simply cannot miss. It is free entertainment of the finest sort and should leave no-one disappointed. If you miss this one you will regret it for a long time.

*Sunday night’s judges will be Paul Spear, Phil Smith and The Dream Factory’s Mark Mortimer. Only one winner can go through to next Sunday’s final which already includes Burnin’ Sky, One On One and Wolfsbane.

Tamworth Herald – 28/02/86
Musicbox – Here comes clash for battle honours
LOCAL ROCK fans are expected to swarm to Tamworth Arts Centre tonight to watch the exciting finals to the hugely-successful “Battle of the Bands” competition.

The contest has been a marvellous celebration of the local rock scene with packed houses every night and good performances all round.

And to cap the whole event off, one of the four heat winners – Burnin’ Sky, Breaking Point, Wolfsbane and One On One will tonight be crowned as local rock champions.

Another full house is expected for the intriguing four-way battle and although it wasn’t confirmed at time of going to press, it was hoped that world-famous soul favourite Edwin Starr will chair the judging panel.

The draw for the final positions was held during Sunday’s heat and it will mean that last year’s winners Breaking Point will open the event.

Breaking Point just secured their place in the final on Sunday night, and there is no doubt that they would like to hold onto the Battle of the Bands crown at all costs.

The trio will once again produce a set mixing their old material with the new, and they will literally set the contest alight and leave the other three bands following with a mighty hurdle to clear for victory.

Second up on the night will be Coleshill’s finest Burnin’ Sky. The group emerged as surprise victors of heat one and they will be hoping to increase the support they found in the Tamworth audience on the night.

The sound they produce is a light, progressive rock and although on paper Burnin’ Sky are probably the outsiders if President Marcos can claim victory in the Phillipines, anything is possible.

Third band on the night will be One On One – who scored the highest marks in the heats. The band have undergone something of a radical transformation of late, and their new brand of rock shocked many people who saw them defeat Catch 22, The Australians and The First in perhaps the best heat of the whole contest.

They should prove a hard act to beat and although One On One are wisely trying to play it down, there is a grounds’ well of opinion that tonight will be their night.

Finally Wolfsbane will hit the stage and will aim straight for the jugular. The band only just scraped into the final with a slightly below-par show two weeks ago and they will be determined to cast that performance aside and turn on some of the acknowledged Wolfsbane magic tonight.

So, four bands all with a good chance of victory. Sandwiched between Burnin’ Sky and One On One there will also be the sardonic and rabid humour of Tamworth’s answer to John Cooper Clarke – Jed Moore.

All in all it makes for a night when no self-respecting rock fan should be seen on the streets. Entry to the gig will be just 75p and the winner will be crowned as the 1986 Tamworth Young People’s Arts Festival Band of the Year. They are all at the starting post, the bets have been placed, now watch them go.

Tamworth Herald – 28/02/86
Musicbox – Thunder, fog and buckets of hair gel…
Heat rises and the victors live up to their name

Battle of the Bands – Heat Four – Review
BREAKING POINT squeezed into the final of the ‘Battle of the Bands’ on Sunday night in another absorbing and contrasting night of local music. They won their heat by just one point in another show which was packed to the rafters with sweat-soaked, rock-hungry spectators.

Biggest disappointment of the night was that the injury to John Reeman’s hand meant the much tipped Terroa were forced to pull out. It was a blow, but in the true spirit of the local scene new band Kara agreed to step in and were sent scuttling back home to get their guitars after they had arrived for a peaceful night out.

Opening the show were Spirit Lake, who attempted, and to a large extent succeeded – to create the feel of the early 70s. Comparisons with Deep Purple and even from one judge, Jimi Hendrix, showed the direction the band were clearly trying to go and there was no doubt they worked together well as a tight professional combo.

Lungs

Keyboard player Tim Burgess came in for a lot of well-deserved praise, but the highlight of the set was undoubtedly a tremendous number called ‘Armageddon’ complete with a sparkling smoke effect which embraced everybody’s lungs and made the atmosphere even thicker.

Next up were The Cradle – and what a revelation they were. When they came on the stage (leaving behind buckets of hair gel) they looked and …stamped all over it, with that man Quay racing around the stage like a headless chicken.

The opening number ‘A State Of Mind’, was quite brilliant and although the band were a little rough around the edges, they were extremely promising. I have no doubt their Cult-style sound will soon give them a cult following and it certainly was a spine-tingling show. The haircuts were pretty irresistible too.

Kara came next and turned in a very tight and powerful show which brought wide applause from the audience. Kara displayed none of the nerves you would expect from a band who had been in the competition for just two hours.

The swing

Best number of a well played set – a special credit to the male and female vocalists and the group’s new guitarist, Paul – was ‘Promises’ which had a thunderingly good chorus and a clean, likeable sound.

Closing the contest were heat winners Breaking Point. Despite having a slightly under-stated sound, they soon got into the swing of things and somebody walked past me after two minutes and said “They’ve won it – no contest!”.

Well, in the end, it didn’t quite work out that way, as the band managed just a one point victory, but there is no doubt they will take some beating tonight (Friday).

So Terroa or not Terroa (that was the sadness) with was a fine all-round show, loudly applauded and supported by the biggest audience yet. The three judges Paul Speare, Phil Smith and the Dream Factory’s Mark Mortimer, were clearly impressed with the overall standard.

Tamworth Herald – 07/03/86
Musicbox – Starry tribute to superlative finale

Caption: Edwin Starr with One On One – the 1986 Battle of the Bands winners. Edwin and Andy Malkin are pictured with the £50 free recording time cheque presented by Expresso Bongo.
Caption: Edwin Starr with One On One – the 1986 Battle of the Bands winners. Edwin and Andy Malkin are pictured with the £50 free recording time cheque presented by Expresso Bongo.

DELIGHTED ONE ON ONE emerged as the new champions of the Tamworth rock scene on Friday night when they won the 1986 Battle of the Bands contest.

Hundreds of spectators enjoyed a night packed from start to finish with frenzied, powerful music which was a tribute to the whole local scene.

Among them were international soul singer Edwin Starr and his multi-talented musician brother Angelo. The duo’s appearance was a boost to all the bands involved and the enthusiasm they showed surprised everyone.

“I came here expecting to be disappointed but I have been shocked at the real talent on show,” Edwin Starr told the mass ranks of spectators. “I don’t care where I am or what I am supposed to be doing at the time, when you have your festival, I will be there because these local bands deserve every success.”

Edwin and Angelo’s enthusiastic support for the result of a four-band show that was every…Breaking Point, Burnin’ Sky, One On One and Wolfsbane, all played better than they did in the heat stages and the high marks all round reflected this.

Breaking Point opened the proceedings with – in my opinion one of the greatest sets they have ever produced. I have lost track of the amount of times I have seen this, my favourite band, but watching them on Friday was like watching them for the first time all over again. They were direct, powerful and dynamic with Kevin, Jason and Daydo sounding as confident and clear-sighted as ever.

“Brotherhood of Israel” was the set-stealer but there was a loud cheer for that old nostalgic classic “My Love Lies Bleeding”. A set to remember.

Burnin’ Sky followed and their show was far better than the one that won them the first heat of the competition. They played with a relaxed air that belied their relative inexperience. Their original r ‘n’ b rock was one with a potential cult appeal that is perhaps only just being hinted at.

And so to the victors – One On One. The moment they hit the stage you knew they meant business. Dave Ingham was supposed to have had a cold, yet he showed all the usual confident and vocal ability that has made him the undisputed king of singers in Tamworth.

All the other members of the band weighed in with their normal faultless musical performances with guitarist Tim Latham being described afterwards by Edwin Starr as “like a young Eric Clapton”. Praise indeed for Eric Clapton.

Best number of an electric set was “Different Drums” which fused together all the bands assets into one mesmerising number.

The night was concluded by Wolfsbane whose power-blasting set put their show in the heats in the shade. They were fast, furious and great fun in the true Wolfsbane tradition with several numbers, notably “I’m Not A Baby” and the 800 mph “Manhunt” splitting heads in two.

Wolfsbane were clearly pleased with their show, the audience loved it and the night ended on the highest possible note.

Pleasure

In the middle of the concert the audience also had the dubious pleasure of a 15-minute tirade by tasteless poet Jed Moore who risked life and limb and prosecution with a set brimming with nastiness. (As for the attack on me, well there’s nothing wrong with Sigue Sigue Sputnik anyway Jed, and they have got more chance of being number one than Everton!)

The whole event closed with the speeches, presentations and congratulations. The atmosphere at this stage was a festival-style friendliness and genuine mutual appreciation, that was truly heartening to witness.

Dave Ingham summed it all up for me by saying “The Tamworth music scene is brilliant and so are every band who’ve been involved”.

Amen to that one David.

Tamworth Herald – 14/03/86
Musicbox – STOP PRESS
BREAKING POINT will tomorrow (Saturday) go into the studio to record the marvellous ‘Ode to Nikholas Romanov’. The money for the whole venture has been paid for by local pool players and fans of the threesome.

Now at last the world will see what I have been saying all along – these boys are the business!!

Tamworth Herald – 21/03/86
Musicbox – Succeeding with talent and mouth
Bambu CurtainI HAVE recently been filing all my old MUSICBOX columns from the past three years or so and as one of those academic exercises, I decided to see just who has been the most featured band in the column over that time.

People often accuse me of bias in various directions but I think the ‘top ten’ of mentions shows that I have managed to cover the whole spectrum of local music from the ‘lightest’ to the ‘heaviest’.

This was not a scientific exercise, I merely flicked through the columns and noted the names of bands whenever I saw them. So a ‘mention’ could be just one line or a full feature. Anyway here’s the top ten from 1983.

1. The Dream Factory (60 mentions), 2. Sitting Pretty (57), 3. Breaking Point (53), 4. Wolfsbane (52), 5. BHX (51), 6. Love On Board (49), 7. One On One (37), 8. The Magnets (32), 9. Sacred Oath (25) and The Cradle (25), 10. The Royal Family (20).

Outside of this batch as a matter of interest were Terroa, Dance Stance, A5 and Caprice. At the other end of the scale there were local bands whose name were featured only once such as Alibi, The Fashionable Gents, Bambu Curtain and The Time Bandits.

Tamworth Herald – 04/04/86
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point have just finished mixing what will be there first single ‘Ode to Nicholas Romanov’. In my normal unbiased way let me tell you sounds brilliant and more details on the progress of the single will follow.

Tamworth Herald – 09/05/86
Musicbox – SNIPS
The very wonderful Breaking Point bring their immense talent back to the Tavern in the Town on Thursday night. This is the first time in too long that the boys have trodden the Tavern boards and a large, enthusiastic crowd is expected. It all starts at 9.30pm.

Tamworth Herald – 16/05/86
Musicbox – The Texan joke boy’s with real rocking party
THE RATHOLE stage sits first major non-local show on Sunday night in the marvellous shape of The Red Beards From Texas.

Supporting the Red Beards – whose debut single comes out on Friday will be Breaking Point.

Not much needs to be said of Breaking Point except for the simple fact that you would have to be deaf, stupid or six feet under not to toe-tap to their sound.

By all accounts The Red Beards From Texas are a walking, breathing rock and roll party, so miss this at your peril. It comes at a ludicrous £1.50, starts at 8pm.

Tamworth Herald – 06/06/86
Musicbox – Kevin’s super signing
BREAKING POINT’S excellent singer/guitarist Kevin Briggs has at last landed a major coup – a wedding contract.

For tomorrow the ever optimistic Kevin will tie the know in Burton, although I am assured it will not stop his extra martial love affair with driving, powerful music.

Rumours that the church choir will burst into a chorus of ‘Come The Day’ have yet to be confirmed but regardless of that MUSICBOX would like to wish Kevin and the soon to be Mrs. Briggs the very best for the future with the sincere hope that they never meet breaking point!

Tamworth Herald – 11/07/86
Musicbox - SNIPS
BREAKING POINT return to the Tamworth stage on Wednesday night with a concert at Kimberley’s wine bar. The band, who should be on stage at around 9pm, have promised a number of new songs to make the night even more enticing. Kimberley’s is well in the rock public’s eye at the moment, as it has legendary DJ Buttercup behind the decks, and also has the supreme taste to have ‘New Rose, by The Damned on the video juke box. So if you like Breaking Point, Buttercup and The Damned there really is only one place to be on Wednesday.

Tamworth Herald – 22/08/86
Musicbox – Here’s the fabulous festival line-up
TAMWORTH’S fourth annual Bank holiday rock festival blazes into action this weekend and promises to be the biggest and best the Town has ever seen.

Eighteen bands will take to the Castle Grounds stage on Sunday and Monday offering a varied and exciting package of local talent.

And, to give the festival the best possible start, Tamworth Arts Centre will tonight (Friday) and tomorrow stage two festival party nights featuring among others Wolfsbane, Breaking Point and a one-off show from Love On Board.

All in all it looks like being a festival to remember and here in full details is what is happening where and when.

Tonight

The festival starts with an Arts Centre triple bill featuring three bands from the heavier side of life. New boys Shellshock will join up with not-so-new boys Kara and positively-old boys Wolfsbane for a sparkling three band show. As with last years, the Arts Centre pre-festival nights are designed to be party-style events and everyone petting into the spirit (and spirits) of the weekend. It starts at 8pm costs 50p and should be excellent.

Saturday

ANOTHER enticing triple bill will especially interest people of an alternative (sic) persuasion. Breaking Point, who hope to have their debut single out this week, will headline the show and in support will be two unusual acts. First is 13th Reunion featuring the immortal Gerald on bass and second is Love On Board making a special one-off comeback gig to join in the party atmosphere. It adds up to a superb bill which marks the debut show for 13th Reunion, and once again is a meagre – nay, measly! – 50p

Sunday

AND SO to the main event. Two days of exciting, varied rock music in the Castle Grounds. Once again the stage will be set up in front of the tennis courts at the far end of the Castle Grounds, and as with the past couple of years, it will cost you nothing to watch. Here is a quick one-line description of all the bands on show and their (approximate) appearance times…

Heavy

Freefall (12.20) A Coventry heavy band (that’s all I know!)

Attica (1.05) Powerful bass-driven combo who crimp their hair and slice their guitars.

Shellshock (1.40) Young lusty metal sound, who smile a lot.

Soil Brothers (2.15) Skiffle-style pop played with coconuts, cardboard and oodles of enthusiasm.

One On One (2.50) Nose-perfect rock music played by soon-to-be superstars.

Noise

Kara (3.25) loud Americanised noises played by local Anglicised noise-makers.

XPD (4.00) Stylish alternative pop music, which cab be summed up as ‘ego-shock’ rock.

Catch 23 (4.35) Pure-punk-period pop music with panache, power and passion.

The Magnets (5.10) Modern synthesised pop music played by modern synthesised pop people.

Monday

ONCE MORE the Castle Grounds plays host to nine more varied outfits who line up like this.

Burnin’ Sky (12.30) Coleshill-based r ‘n’ b band who revel in the smoky, sleazy way of life.

Beyond Elysium (1.05) Dark sombre sounds with a modern appeal and feel.

Funky

Cuddly Spiders (1.40) Laid-back harmless flares rock.

Breaking Point (2.15) Passion-packed soaring, roaring rock music.

Dance Stance (2.50) Tight, funky nouveau-pop with a burning soul.

Wolfsbane (3.25) Gentle, middle of the road folk band made up of four charmingly polite young boys. A mud afternoon break from all this rock nonsense.

Depth Charge (4.00) Cuddly rock and roll pirates bursting with good times.

Orange (4.35) Deceptively light pop music with a telling edge. Bright, breezy, orangey.

The Royal Family (5.10) regal r ‘n’ b with guaranteed dance-ability and toe-tapping tendencies.

Tamworth Herald – 29/08/86
Musicbox – SNIPS
THE WOLFSBANE and Breaking Point singles are both on the immediate horizon. Wolfsbane have had the first test-pressings of ‘Clutching at Straws’ sent back to them and they are apparently delighted. It should be launched in the next couple of weeks.

Tamworth Herald – 17/10/86
Musicbox – Gossipbox
ALSO going apparently is a number of old Breaking Point songs. It seems that Kevin Briggs has been busy writing new material and has come up with at least eight new titles which will be premiered when the band release their debut single ‘Ode To Nicholas Romanov” which I am assured should be out before Christmas.

Tamworth Herald – 05/12/86
Musicbox – Nicholas will star in a big-hearted bonanza
BREAKING POINT are back! The exciting trio play their first gig in several months tonight (Friday) when they team up with kindred spirits Attica to play a special charity show at The Rathole.BREAKING POINT are back! The exciting trio play their first gig in several months tonight (Friday) when they team up with kindred spirits Attica to play a special charity show at The Rathole.

The double-header is the official launch of Breaking Point’s first single ‘Ode To Nicholas Romanov” which will be on sale tonight. And to make the night even mores special all profits go to the Tavern in the Town appeal for the blind.

“The Tavern were very supportive by helping us to raise money for the single,” said Breaking Point singer Kevin Briggs. “In return for their help we said we would play a gig for their appeal and we hope a lot of people will turn up to boost the campaign.”

Breaking Point have spent the last three or four months preparing for the launch of their single. It was recorded earlier this year at Paul Speare’s Expresso Bongo Studio and the band have spent the interim period working with Edward ian Armchair on a special concept sleeve.

The song will be easily recognised by all the band’s followers – and many who aren’t – as it boasts an amazing hook and a tremendous atmosphere that catapults the listener back to the era of revolutionary Russia.

It was my Song of the Year two years ago and remains one of the finest songs ever written by a Tamworth band. You will be able to find out for yourself just how that epic style has translated to vinyl by buying the single tonight.

“We have been looking forward to this concert for a while and we hope it will be a good party atmosphere with a good crowd,” said Kevin Briggs.

Joining Breaking Point tonight are Attica, a trio who share the headliners’ enthusiasm for fast, loud and tingling music.. Eddie, Jim and Pete have also not played too many Tamworth concerts of late, but as usual their enthusiasm is infectious.

“We are really looking forward to it and hopefully we will be able to make a big impact,” said lead singer Eddie Madden.

Dancing

What should also be interesting is an unofficial ‘bass wars’ battle. Breaking Point’s Daydo and Attica’s Pete Wright are my two favourites bass players around, and I for one will be keen to see who produces the meatier bass-grind tonight.

So, a whole host of reasons for you to dust off your dancing shoes and head for the Rathole tonight. Two great bands, one great charity cause and a first chance to but Breaking point’s debut single. I have a strong feeling it is going to be one of the gigs of the year and anyone who does not turn up will have to send a note from their mother the following day or answer to Eddie Madden.

Tamworth Herald – 12/12/86
Musicbox – Two Big Shows – One Big Smile
IT WAS some weekend wasn’t it? Two great “Rathole” gigs, two large, lusty audiences and four exceptional performers. I would settle for the following every week…

ATTICA
NOT quite as powerful and ear-blistering as usual (p.a. problems I’m told) but still a very enjoyable set full of purpose and restrained anger. Pete did unspeakably wonderful things on his bass. Eddie seemed his normal calm, inhibited self and the only disappointment was that Tamworth’s favourite skin-breaker, the traditionally violent Jim Pighand was rather too quiet. Still, any band that can write songs as food as “View” have nothing to worry about.

BREAKING POINT
A VERY passionate night and a very passionate set. Breaking Point received the belated adulation they truly deserve and at times reached the sort of peaks that I don’t think any Tamworth band has ever surpassed. The single was of course the highlight (pure, beautiful emotion) but for sheer impact and audience participation it was impossible to beat the sizzling ‘Guns of Ambergold’. Watch out for ‘Hitlist’ and ‘Stars’ as well, two new songs that Breaking Point are still as dazzling a prospect as ever. Great fun.

ORANGE BLOSSOM SPECIAL
Short, sweet and entertaining set which was even better than their Festival show. The band seem to have settled on the direction they want to follow, and are now producing music which is mature, original and very refreshing. Glen “Hogmany” Lewis remains one of the coolest dudes around and Orange remain one of the brightest hopes.

STRAP ON JACK
ANYONE who didn’t LOVE these is officially dead. That’s all I can say. Wonderful.

Tamworth Herald – 13/02/87
Musicbox – Points ahead for fire-cracking set
FIRST NIGHT of the ‘Battle of the Bands’ turned into an entertaining, controversial and thoroughly enjoyable night. All three bands played well enough to leave large sectors of the audience thinking their favourite had won, and the scores couldn’t have been tighter.

In the end the three judges – Edward ian Armchair, Kevin McGough and chairman Martin Warrilow – were split somewhat, and the difference between the first and third bands was a mere five points. And this is how it all went…

KARA
A lively, well-structured enthusiastic set from a band who certainly had the backing of the majority of the large, noisy crowd. The band three out the cover versions and replaced them with their own much stronger material which fully displayed their inherent knack for writing commercial, powerful and anthemic metal pop. A strong, intelligent set.

BREAKING POINT
Making their first appearance for some time, Breaking Point were loud, brash and exciting. Their material combined the dazzling old (‘Nicholas Romanov’ and ‘Ambergold’) with the dazzling new (‘Britannia and ‘Israel’) to produce a fiery, well-balanced set. All three members sounded musically better than I can remember, but a special word for bassist Daydo who was simply magnificent. A fire-cracking 30 minutes.

RAPE IN YELLOW
A confident and extremely promising debut which led one judge to say ‘they’re going to be the best band in Tamworth’. Rape In Yellow’s sound mixes the Sixties feel of The Kinks and The Beatles, with the Eighties feel of the Cure and Julian Cope and is played with inventiveness and considerable musical prowess. Graham Harwood has a superb voice, the band have a strong, marketable image and when they get through the inevitable early teething problems they have literally masses of potential to be very big indeed. A band with a big future and very nice haircuts.

THE JUDGES’ VERDICT
Breaking Point sneaked into the February 27 final by the smallest of margins. They won it through their choice or material and general impact although all three judges scored very highly for both Rape In Yellow and Kara.

MY VERDICT
Although my love for Breaking Point is well-known and unabashed I think on the night Kara just about deserved to win. They played with spirit and enthusiasm and looked hungry for success. In a sense it was perhaps unfair to judge Rape In Yellow as they were making their debut but I am sure if they had sneaked in there would have been few complaints from anyone. Three good bands and a hard decision for three good judges. The debate will go on about the final result but one thing is certain – Tamworth definitely won!

Tamworth Herald – 27/02/87
Musicbox – BATTLE ROYALE!
TAMWORTH Arts Centre will tonight host one of the most exciting concerts of the year – the grand final of the ‘Battle of the Bands’.

Four varied and enjoyable acts – Catch 23, Wolfsbane, The Cheesy Helmets and Breaking Point – will battle for the crown which was won last year by One On One.

The success of the whole ‘Battle of the Bands’ event has been staggering. Already all the overheads have been covered meaning every penny raised tonight will go towards the ‘TAMAID’ charity.

Tonight’s final promises to be the most wide-open in the three year history of the tourney. Two years ago when Breaking point won it, they went into the final as favourites, last year’s winners One On One were widely tipped to take the title, but tonight looks like ‘anybody’s game’.

Because there are four bands, the concert will start at 8.30pm instead of 9pm – and opening up the proceedings (a draw was made after last week’s heat) will be the Cheesy Helmets. These are certainly the dark horses in the contest, but the way they won over last week’s judges implies they could yet pull off an overall victory. Musically it is powerful post-punk new wave which has a modern and absorbing atmosphere and is fiery, frantic and frenzied. With the temporary help of outstanding drummer Richard Deane the overall effect is an earburning experience of pure power. Get there on time, because you should not miss this band…

Following the Helmets, will be the youngest band ever to appear in a ‘Battle’ final – Catch 23. Despite their tender age the Atherstone outfit have matured beyond belief in recent months, and are now at the stage where their confidence matches their considerable musical talent. The five piece were simply magnificent when they took their heat with their aggressive, commercial, pop which won friends of all musical persuasions. Many people think they will win tonight’s final – including both Jeff and Steve from Wolfsbane – but whatever the outcome the group intend to enjoy the night to the fullest. The audience will do the same if Catch 23 are even half as good as they were in the heat.

Following Catch 23 will be those mayhem-merchants of metal (good alliteration, huh?), Wolfsbane. The quartet, who seem to be following the old maxim every day in every way we’re getting better and better’ thoroughly enjoyed last week’s heat and are keenly awaiting taking the audience to pieces tonight. Particularly looking forward to it is drummer Steve Ellett whose exhilarating performance and appallingly ‘cheeky’ trousers last week showed that he is a true bonafide Wolfsbanian fruitcake. Wolfsbane are a lot of fun and on their night they are simply unbeatable. Is tonight that night.

Completing tonight’s line-up are Breaking Point – an ambitious trio who thankfully seem now way near their own breaking point. Kevin, Daydo and Jason will enjoy the large, noisy audience the night will certainly produce and their modern guitar-orientated power-rock should find favour with followers of all the other bands on the night. They will enjoy going on last and should put the perfect, pulsating end to a fine night.

So four great bands to make one great final. The judges will be Stu Blane (One On One), Mark Mortimer (Great Express), Mick Goodby (Depth Charge), Denis Byfield (Reverb PA) and Martin Webster who has helped throughout the contest. Entry is just £1 – and remember all of that is charity-bound. The winners will pick up £50, individual ‘Battle of the Bands’ trophies and maybe the odd surprise gift. Ina sense all four bands have won already by getting to the final, but the battle is still not over.

By about 11.15 tonight one band will be crowned Tamworth young Peoples’ Arts Festival Band of the Year. Will it be the Cheesy Helmets, Wolfsbane, Catch 23 or Breaking Point. Make sure you are there to find out – and don’t forget get there early because we are expecting an Arts Centre sell out!

Tamworth Herald – 06/03/87
Musicbox – Crowning glory for the kings of rock
SUPER WOLFSBANE turned in the performance of their rock and roll lives on Friday night to deservedly scoop the ‘Battle of the Bands’ title for the first time.SUPER WOLFSBANE turned in the performance of their rock and roll lives on Friday night to deservedly scoop the ‘Battle of the Bands’ title for the first time.

Wolfsane were simply outstanding and even their rivals on the night knew they had come up against a rock and roll tidal wave. Catch 23’s guitarist Ray Clenshaw summed it up perfectly “If you’re going to lose, you might as well lose to the best,” he said.

But talk of victors and vanquished must be held for a few minutes, because the real winner of this whole contest was the Tamworth music scene itself. All four finalists turned in superb performances in front of the biggest crowd ever seen at an Arts Centre concert.

Equally pleasing was that the continued support of the area’s music fans means that somewhere between £300-£350 was raised for the local pop charity ‘TAMAID’.

This will be held until the TAMAID demo is available in the next few weeks, and then a cheque will be presented to the Quince Tree Special School at Amington as a token of the goodwill and good spirits of the local rock scene.

Everyone should be proud of their efforts over the past four weeks and none more so than the four finalists themselves who helped to give the judges – Messrs. Stuart Blaine, Denis Byfield, Mark Mortimer, John Reeman and Martin Webster all manner of headaches.

Opening up the proceedings were The Cheesy Helmets who turned in a shorter- than-allowed but still very strong set. It was loud, brash and adventurous and once again Richard Cuttler and Mark Brindley bounced around the stage as if they had just discovered the ancient art of the pogo. Guitarist Andy was also very impressive, slicing away at his machine with devilish delight and with Richard and John adding power and subtlety respectively, it was a fine mesmerising set.

Next up were Catch 23 who were greeted with the sort of roar that showed they have carved a very big niche in a lot of people’s hearts. Once again the group showed enthusiasm, spirit and inspiring confidence and although their set didn’t match the one they produced in the heat (how could it?) it still showed that there is so much this outfit have to offer.

Best of all was the final crucial number ‘Twisted Mind’ where the band displayed a touch of amateur dramatics to complement a staggeringly tuneful number. It was my song of the night.

And then came what can only be described as 30 minutes of pure joy – Wolfsbane. The group were in tremendous mood and this reflected in the way they played, slayed and drained the hungry, sweating crowd.

Everyone of their numbers was played to musical perfection and their look and stage presence would be the envy of many national heavy metal bands.

All the songs “Get Up”, “Dance To My Tune” and the rejuvenated “Clutching At Straws”, brought applause the like of which the Arts Centre has never seen, and by the end of their set you would have to be devoid of all five senses not to realise that here is an almighty force. I loved ‘em to bits.

New Song

Finally up were Breaking Point who had the unenviable task of following Wolfsbane. Well, Breaking Point are as professional as amateurs can be and their style won over many new friends. One new song in particular “Hitman” was quite outstanding, and the most exciting thing about this most exciting band is they seem to be writing newer and better material all the time.

They have about as much chance of drying up as the River Tame and I for one found all my hopes for Breaking Point rekindled after their strong and increasingly passionate set.

So to the finale. All four bands were called up on stage, given a bottle of champagne and the result was announced – Wolfsbane were the Tamworth Young People’s Arts Festival band of the year. They picked up individual prizes (plus a deserved one for Brian Edwards), a £75 prize and the knowledge that no-one begrudged them their victory after such a sparkling set.

It brought to an end four great weeks on the local music scene. Weeks that proved that the enthusiasm of both bands and followers show there are signs of life.

Tamworth Herald – 10/04/87
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point’s debut single ‘Ode to Nicholas Romanov’ was reviewed in the Melody Maker last week. To put it mildly the review wasn’t quite as enthusiastic as my normal Breaking Point glorification, but as both The Dream Factory and Wolfsbane will testify, ANY national publicity is good publicity.

Tamworth Herald – 03/07/87
Musicbox – SNIPS
BREAKING Point are still holding auditions for a new drummer and are still interested to hear from any would-be stick-bashers. So far they have auditioned self-confessed Breaking point fan Terry Cooper and former Sacred Oath and Eye Do It drummer Vicki Gwinnett. If you would like a bash at becoming a Breaking Point skin-basher give Kevin Briggs a ring.

Tamworth Herald – 17/07/87
Musicbox - SNIPS
Breaking Point – who were in action at West Bromwich on Saturday night – are still searching for a new, permanent drummer. The group stress that they have a lot of good live concerts on the horizon and any new member can expect to join a tight unit committed to a powerful musical future. It sounds interesting, give Kevin Briggs a ring during the day.

Tamworth Herald – 04/09/87
Pick of the songs
AND THE SONGS of the Festival? Well this year I had to plump for ‘Get Up’ by Wolfsbane, ‘Disguises’ by WIN and ironically ‘Come The Day’ by Breaking Point. I say ironically because that song wasn’t even played until the disco after the event, but it contained a line that summed up that whole thing ‘come the day we will sing our song in tune – and together’.

Well the day(s) came this weekend, Tamworth’s music showed itself to be united as never before and everyone from the ever-busy Bayley Cooke to the bizarre roadie ‘George’ deserves credit for a festival that provided heroes without villains.

Next year cannot come quickly enough.

Tamworth Herald – 04/09/87
Musicbox – Power and glory songs
Spotlight on two opposites with a certain bond
The Parade – Demo/Breaking Point – Demo

ON THE SURFACE, Kevin Briggs and Brian Lacey have very little in common. They don’t listen to the same music, like the same music, share the same dreams or believe in the same attitudes. And yet these two highly-contrasting individuals have a unique and precious bond – they are both totally natural, gifted songwriters.

For some bands’ images, style – even politics – are easy enough to sort out but songwriting is murderous. For both The Parade and Breaking Point this is not the case. These two demos show perfectly their ability to make difficult songwriting seem easy, and prove that to be able to pen the tunes is far more important than to be able tom play them.

The Parade’s demo, for example, is a mixture of the all-new line-up in ‘live’ Expresso Bongo action, and a host of solo acoustic material by Mr. Lacey. The former tracks show that The Parade have settled on a stronger, more defined line-up and sound.

New drummer Alan Bayliss shows surprising confidence and competence for one so relatively inexperienced, while new backing singer Heidi Thomas adds some lovely well-pitched edges to Brian Lacey’s more aggressive tones.

Of the tunes on offer on this 45-minute collection, oldies like ‘A Kind Of Living’, ‘All Of the Time’ and especially ‘Seventeen’ have been given a new uplifting feel while one or two new tracks seem quite priceless. I was particularly won over by the mesmerising ‘Understanding You’ and the romantic ‘I’ll Be With you Tomorrow’ which reminded me very much of Simon and Garfunkel. This is less of a demo, more of an experiment but on both counts it works very well indeed. Welcome back Parade.

As for Breaking Point, well they have been going for so long now that we have perhaps become a little blasé about their immense songwriting panorama. The two tracks on their latest demo – ‘Brotherhood of Israel’ and ‘Come On Brittania’ show that the band can still produce those tear-jerkingly flowing melodies that made Breaking Point such a revelation when they first hit the scene.

‘Brotherhood’ is the stronger number with its almost metallic drive and thumping chorus, but I was just as impressed with the more pop-angled ‘Come On Brittania’ where Kevin Briggs’ passionate appeal for ‘change’ adds a harder edge to an unusually soft musical base.

The two tracks together represent Breaking Point at their punching, powerful best. It could be argued that the band have just missed out on a time when this music was more popular, but when they have the ability to write songs like this they should never lose their faith.

They are STILL one of the finest creations of the Tamworth rock scene and when they have the talent of songwriting – which they share with The Parade – they have a talent which is immortal.

Band come and go. Songs live forever.

Tamworth Herald – 18/09/87
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point and The Conspiracy are hoping to team up soon for some special concerts. Meanwhile Breaking Point have organised a concert at The Mermaid in Birmingham with old rock legends The Groundhogs at the end of October. A coach should be going and more info is available from band members.

Tamworth Herald – 04/09/87
Musicbox – Power and glory songs
Breaking PointSpotlight on two opposites with a certain bond
The Parade – Demo/Breaking Point – Demo

ON THE SURFACE, Kevin Briggs and Brian Lacey have very little in common. They don’t listen to the same music, like the same music, share the same dreams or believe in the same attitudes. And yet these two highly-contrasting individuals have a unique and precious bond – they are both totally natural, gifted songwriters.

For some bands’ images, style – even politics – are easy enough to sort out but songwriting is murderous. For both The Parade and Breaking Point this is not the case. These two demos show perfectly their ability to make difficult songwriting seem easy, and prove that to be able to pen the tunes is far more important than to be able tom play them.

The Parade’s demo, for example, is a mixture of the all-new line-up in ‘live’ Expresso Bongo action, and a host of solo acoustic material by Mr. Lacey. The former tracks show that The Parade have settled on a stronger, more defined line-up and sound.

New drummer Alan Bayliss shows surprising confidence and competence for one so relatively inexperienced, while new backing singer Heidi Thomas adds some lovely well-pitched edges to Brian Lacey’s more aggressive tones.

The ParadeOf the tunes on offer on this 45-minute collection, oldies like ‘A Kind Of Living’, ‘All Of the Time’ and especially ‘Seventeen’ have been given a new uplifting feel while one or two new tracks seem quite priceless. I was particularly won over by the mesmerising ‘Understanding You’ and the romantic ‘I’ll Be With you Tomorrow’ which reminded me very much of Simon and Garfunkel. This is less of a demo, more of an experiment but on both counts it works very well indeed. Welcome back Parade.

As for Breaking Point, well they have been going for so long now that we have perhaps become a little blasé about their immense songwriting panorama. The two tracks on their latest demo – ‘Brotherhood of Israel’ and ‘Come On Brittania’ show that the band can still produce those tear-jerkingly flowing melodies that made Breaking Point such a revelation when they first hit the scene.

‘Brotherhood’ is the stronger number with its almost metallic drive and thumping chorus, but I was just as impressed with the more pop-angled ‘Come On Brittania’ where Kevin Briggs’ passionate appeal for ‘change’ adds a harder edge to an unusually soft musical base.

The two tracks together represent Breaking Point at their punching, powerful best. It could be argued that the band have just missed out on a time when this music was more popular, but when they have the ability to write songs like this they should never lose their faith.

They are STILL one of the finest creations of the Tamworth rock scene and when they have the talent of songwriting – which they share with The Parade – they have a talent which is immortal.

Band come and go. Songs live forever.

Tamworth Herald – 27/11/87
Musicbox – Here Comes Two Cracking Nights
Breaking PointTAMWORTH’S music scene bursts into life again this weekend with two cracking concerts at the Arts Centre.

Tonight (Friday) powerkings Breaking Point spearhead an alternative bash which features The Great Express and The Conspiracy and then on Sunday, rock music takes over with metal men Shellshock teaming up with Atherstone twosome The New Age Gypsies and Kubla Khan.

Both concerts offer a mixture of new and old favourites and both offer the respective audiences a wide range of exciting modern music.

Let’s start by looking at tonight’s show. Topping off the bill are Breaking Point who are looking to tonight’s concert as an important new starting point in their long and enjoyable career.

As well as parading many of their oldies and goldies, the band will be serving up several new tunes all of which they passionately believe stand up to the best of the rest. Breaking Point have, in former times, produced some of the greatest ever Arts Centre concerts, where their mixture of dynamic, power, skilful songwriting and often moving melodies have slayed their audience unmercilessly.

If they can play to their crunching best tonight – as they sincerely hope to do – it could turn out to be a very special set indeed.

Also hoping to turn on the style will be two new bands who have made a big impact on Tamworth this year – The Great Express and The Conspiracy. The Express and now back in business after a lay-off of several months, and they are returning with virtually a brand new set of songs which have been conceived while the band have been away from our stages.

All the new material has fired the group’s enthusiasm and when it is supplemented by the likes of ‘Over and Out’ and ‘You Are My World’ it should make an excellent set. Completing tonight’s intriguing trio will be The Conspiracy, a group who have been busy with live work since their first dramatic attack on the local scene at the Rock Festival. The groups new-wave-based modern rock sound should fit the bill perfectly tonight, and they have the ability to grab the attention and keep it riveted.

Their appeal is wide-ranging, their sound is strong and their talent is obvious. Long with Breaking Point and The Great Express they represent some of the best and most original music Tamworth has enjoyed and all three groups together should make an irresistible treat.

It starts at around 8pm, the entry fee is very modest and it should be a great night out for local music fans at the Arts Centre tonight.

Then, just 48 hours later, there are yet more tasty morsels on offer. The bands on view at Sunday night’s Arts Centre bash – Shellshock, Kubla Khan and New Age Gypsies - are all hoping to have a real rock and roll party, which should appeal to everyone who likes their music hard and punchy.

Shellshock are a band who play far too few concerts in my opinion, but always impress o, the occasions they do hit the stage. Their last powerful bash at the Rock Festiival earned them praise from all sides and when coupled with their recent thundering demo it shows a band very much alive and kicking. Musically, the band produce meaty metal with a commercial edge.

It has all the ingredients you expect from metal but has those cute tunes and stylish arrangements that are less familiar in the land of blood, guts and axes. The New Age Gypsies, meanwhile have a reputation as a late-Sixties hippy band but their sound owes much to the likes of The Cult as it does to the likes of Love.

Hard rock

It is hard rock with psychedelic overtones – a neat blend of Sizties abd Eighties which happens ironically to sound very Seventies-ish! If that’s confusing, go along on Sunday and you may just see what I mean.

Competing Sunday’s show are the highly-likeable Kubla Khan.

Their music has a lot of touches of the immortal Spirit of Water, a sort of anthemic rock sound with sweeping melodies, brash rhythms and glitzy guitars. Their whole sound is influenced by so many different musical strands it unsurprisingly ends up feeling very original. Such was the impression they made at the Tamworth Rock Festival, that they are certain to be lapped up on Sunday.

So that’s the second of two fine shows this weekend. Both offer three good strong local bands at knock-down, value for money prices. Both should offer local music fans a real plethora of delights so put your dancing shoes on and head for the Arts Centre tonight and Sunday.

Tamworth Herald – 04/12/87
Musicbox – Gems among a week of gigs
MUSICBOX reviewers have been out and about in the last week or so catching up on a host of bands at various venues. Here is a selection of their comments with the code to the reviewers being SH – Sam Holliday; DC – Dan Collins; HM – Helen Machin and DR – David Reeves.

Breaking Point – Tamworth Arts Centre
At the end of Breaking Point’s set, lead singer Kevin Briggs said, with a certain degree of bitterness, that this would probably be the band’s last ever main Tamworth show. This announcement, treated with apathy by an apathetic audience, finally confirmed that Tamworth and Breaking Point were about to divorce. This sorry state of affairs came about partly because of Breaking Point themselves, but probably more so because of a Tamworth public who refused to give the band the credit they deserved. Just because Breaking Point are that little bit older that little less ‘cooler’, that little less compromising and that little more arrogant, the Tamworth music scene has decided to desert them. It is a sad end to what has been a very important story in the Tamworth music scene, and an end which some of us at least will feel rather disillusioned by. Breaking Point were yesterday’s heroes and yet today are ignored. Today’s heroes – Please take note.

SH

Tamworth Herald - 02/09/88
Musicbox – Back to the Point…
Musicbox – Back to the Point…ONE of Tamworth’s longest-established bands make a return to local action next week.

Breaking Point, for a long time Tamworth’s premier holders of the passion torch, will be in action at their native Tavern in the Town on Thursday night.

It will only be the band’s second Tamworth show this year and they have promised fans new and old a real treat.

“We have got quite a loot of new songs and we want to show people that we haven’t gone away and we are still raring to go,” said the band’s ever-enthusiastic bassist Daydo.

The band will once again be showing off the relatively new drummer, Dave Miller. Dave who hails from Burton is the latest in a long string of Breaking Point drummers but fellow members, Daydo and Kev Briggs, believes he is a man to stay – and a man for the future.

So if you want to check out the all-new Breaking Point, complete with a new set and a newly sharpened confidence, the Tavern in the Town is the place to be on Thursday night.

Tamworth Herald - 16/09/88
Musicbox – Review Special
Breaking Point – Tavern in the Town
When Breaking Point stated some time last year that they would not be playing Tamworth again after a poor Arts Centre gig, some people were upset, some relieved and some probably even jumped for joy. I for one am thankful this hasn’t happened. At the Festival they showed they were as good as anyone else. At this gig they proved they are one of Tamworth’s best.

From start to finish this gig was excellent. The Tavern had been transformed into a real venue, complete with a packed audience, lighting and a sound to be proud of thanks to Rikk ‘I’ve Got My Fingers On The Knob’ Quay and Reverb Sounds. When Breaking Point finally appeared things just got better and better. Their set was packed with new songs, nearly all with a catchy tune, singalong chorus and powerful driving bass and drums.

Songs standing out from the rest included ‘Rebel With A Burning Cause’, ‘Guilty’ and ‘Love Lies Bleeding’ and their classic ‘Israel’. They played a well-deserved encore and left many people saying this was their best performance for a very long time.

EDWARD IAN ARMCHAIR

Tamworth Herald - 23/09/88
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point made quite an impact in their Burton Battle of the Bands show last week. The trio, fired on by their excellent Tavern show, picked up quite a lot of notice and have earned themselves several more bookings. According to MUSICBOX spy Buttercup it was Breaking Point ‘at their very best.’

Tamworth Herald – 27/01/89
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point have auditioned former Terroah and Dream Factory drummer Batman. The band, who have had stacks of drummers in their five year history, were very impressed with Batman’s stickwork although it is not known whether he will be able to be a permanent addition.

Tamworth Herald – 25/05/89
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point as was are no more. Members Daydo and Kevin Briggs have now teamed up with Eddie Madden and Batman (ex Terroah) for an all new band who will make their debut at the festival in Breaking Point’s slot.


Breaking Point were a band who as older readers of MUSICBOX will remember could do no wrong in my books.Breaking Point

Breaking Point were a band who as older readers of MUSICBOX will remember could do no wrong in my books. From the first time I them I fell in love with Kevin Briggs’ brilliant sense of melody, Daydo’s wicked bass and a set full of classic power rock tunes. They kept getting better and better earning more and more respect as they did so but they ended up being victims of the Drummer Virus. Try as they might, they couldn’t find that vital permanent sticksman link and in the end it killed them stone dead. Sad though, because when they were bad they were good and when they were good they were BRILLIANT.

Tamworth Herald- 19/01/90
Musicbox – Snips
Breaking Point – as featured in last week’s Best band of the 80s feature – are releasing their last demo ‘Guilty’ which we hope to look at shortly. In the meantime it is likely to be on sale at Rebel Records or from band members as of now.

Tamworth Herald - 02/02/90
Musicbox – SNIPS
Breaking Point’s new demo ‘guilty’ has excited the interest of RCA Records. If you want to see why you can buy a copy of the tape at £1.50 from Rebel records. The three tracker features Kev Briggs, Daydo and Fave Miller and was co-produced by Breaking Point and Rikk Quay who also adds some keyboards. The band are still after a permanent drummer.

Tamworth Herald – 20/04/90
Musicbox – Lincolns Preview
Tamworth legends ‘Breaking Point’ make a long-awaited return this weekendTamworth legends ‘Breaking Point’ make a long-awaited return this weekend when they team up with Birmingham-based Indie act Korova Milkbar for a promising show at Lincolns.

Breaking Point’s permanent members Kevin Briggs and Daydo present yet another new line-up for the show on Sunday night which should attract followers of the band’s own brand of very powerful music.

A quite different attraction will be provided by Korova Milkbar who went down well when they played at Lakin’s last December.

That gig showed quite clearly that New Order fans are in for a treat because Korova are very heavily influenced by the Manchester synth band.

Reviewer Sam Holliday said the band were virtually a copy of New Order but – most importantly – were very good at it, and that’s what counts.

Korova will be supported by Breaking Point – a band who refuse to be pinned down to any one influence.

Kevin, who promises virtually all new material for the gig, said: “There is no one influence – we are influenced by too many bands and styles.

“How would you describe a band like The Icicle Works? We are as different as that.”

But he added: “The music is still Breaking Point although it is more solid, and more wholesome – it is still very powerful and romantic.”

For the new line-up Kevin and Daydo are joined by their 150th (at least) drummer Steve Watkins. The band has now extended to a four-piece with Dave Ross on keyboards adding anew dimension to the Breaking point sound.

Breaking Point have definitely moved on but Kevin says that they may include one of the ‘oldies’ in the set. Let’s hope so, because the old Breaking Point were surely the best local band for Alarm/U2 fans during the 80s.

So, to find out what the Breaking Point of the 90s will be like, and to see Birmingham’s answer to New Order get along to Lincolns (above Manhattans) on Sunday evening.

Gig previews by Sean ‘Two Haddocks’ Atkins

Tamworth Herald – 20/04/90
Musicbox – Town set for a taste of Oz
Tamworth is a three gig Town again this weekend – but thankfully one of them is on Saturday for a change!

For, as well as the Breaking Point and Korova Milkbar gig extensively previewed on the right, there is also a visit to the Arts Centre on Saturday of the sophisticated sound of George Villiers and then a full blown Indie gig at Night Moves on Sunday featuring The Australians and The Great Divide.

The George Villiers and Australians gigs couldn’t be more different and if you want to know more about any of the shows this week, then just read on…

George Villiers (Tamworth Arts Centre, Saturday night)
George Villiers is described as a ‘composer, lyricist, multi-instrumentalist and heir to the Earldom of Jersey’.

Breaking Point/Korova Milkbar (Lincolns, The Rathole, Sunday)
Powerful combination of modern pop/rock previewed in full.

Tamworth Herald – 04/05/90
Musicbox – Local Reviews
Breaking Point – The Rathole
Perhaps it has just been too long since Breaking Point last played but I really expected better from them. The new material seemed to lack the impact of the old songs and the aggression of a few years ago was lost in self-indulgent guitar solos. But perhaps the comparison is unfair because the ‘old’ Breaking Point had spent years following their distinctive, powerful style while this is just the beginning of a new slightly different brand of music. The power is still there though, as they showed with a performance of ‘Brotherhood of Israel’. I’m prepared to accept that they’ll never write a song the same as that…but I’m still waiting for one that’s as good.

Sean Atrkins

Tamworth Herald – 31/08/90
Musicbox – Joe goes for a Burton
The annual Burton Rock Festival is invaded by Tamworth acts on Wednesday night when no less than four of the five bands on view hail from Tamworth.

Following an opening show by a group called The Gatecrashers, Burton rock fans will be able to see Satellite Spies (ex-A5), Breaking Point, Scream Dream and then headliners Eight Ball Joe as Tamworth well and truly goes for a Burton.

The three day Fest – at the impressive Burton Town Hall – runs on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday with other bands on offer including The JFKs (Thursday), The Lemondrops (Friday) and the National People’s Gang (Friday). Eight Ball Joe are pictured.

 


Recordings
A-side : Ode to Nicholas Romanov
B-side: Come the Day

Recorded at Expresso Bongo Studios
Engineered by Paul Speare and Phil Smith
Produced by Breaking Point
Sleeve Design by Sallie Cole
Printed by Edward ian Armchair

 


The Gallery

Breaking Point

Breaking Point

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Breaking Point

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