The Toilet Boys, Sonic Boom Boys and Neo, the Boatrace, 22nd feb.

Neo first, and WOW. They get better every time I see them. In case you hadn't guessed, this is in no way a subjective review as I love this band.
Punk pop plus some, with intelligent lyrics, catchy and just plain wonderful
tunes, immense stage presence, fuckloads of energy - they're amazing. High points for me were 'Die in America', 'Mundane Monday' and Beautiful' - at
the end of the gig despite having heard two bands inbetween it was Neo who were bouncing persistantly round my head as I was walking home. Beat the other bands hands down in terms of quality and feeling.

Not that the others were exactly bad. When Sonic Boom Boys came on I looked at their gelled-to-excess quiffs and felt a little apprehensive, but when they began playing I was pleasantly surprised by straight-forward and non-too-bad rock'n'roll. Snearing, pouting singer, guitarists smothered in leather, unnaturally fiddly guitar riffs, the lot, combined in the traditional wall of noise with not an ounce of pop allowed to creep in. And the most energetic guitarist I have ever seen performing alarming contortions - people were backing off slightly when he came off the stage for a drink for fear that his on-stage persona might re-emerge without warning.

And speaking of rock'n'roll personas... the lead singer of the Toilet Boys is the most androgynous performer I have ever seen in real life. He looked more like a girl than I do, though this was spolit a little by seeing him in
a t-shirt and jeans once the gig was over - it kinda damaged the whole 'fishnets, leather, tight top with holes in and "Boytoy" belt buckle' image. Maybe he should invest in a little black dress and long cigarette holder, or
try to give off vibes of 'whore on her day off'. Just a thought. But ANYWAY, the music. Stadium rock, Kiss-esque stuff, which I'm non too big a fan of in normal circumstances and know too little about to describe in detail - I just found it instantly forgettable, though you can dance to it very nicely. But the music is almost beside the point when compared to the stage show. My god, but these guys go beyond the call of duty. The guitarist breathed fire during one song, soaking the entire front row in petrol, and set his guitar alight at the end of the set. He also has the most-accessorised guitar ever, not an inch of it is left uncovered and it shot laser-pen beams. Silver
stars shot from the guitars and drums, rivalling some firework shows I've seen. And beside this throughout the set all three guitarists posed nicely and the singer bumped, ground and generally flung himself about. So yeah -
not so sure about the music, but I'd go again just to watch the pyrotechnics.