Armed with songs wading in the kind of angst that would make Eddie Vedder blush, over the course of their set Vex Red grind out straight nu-metal, angular riffs and even electronica.

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Vex Red : Liverpool University

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Vex Red : Liverpool University

Few rock’n’roll fairytales are more compelling than that of Aldershot’s most-unlikelys, Vex Red. Plucked from suburban obscurity by heavyweight American rock producer Ross Robinson on the basis of a three-track demo, Robinson once even chartered a jet from LA to Darlington just to watch them rehearse.

Tonight they justify the producer’s obsession, and then some. Armed with songs wading in the kind of angst that would make Eddie Vedder blush, over the course of their set Vex Red grind out straight nu-metal, angular riffs and even electronica. From the brilliant new single ‘Itch’, through to the show-stealing ‘Can’t Smile’, the slight, young boys punch above their weight but never seem out of their depth.

Of the veritable platoon of emerging British rock/metal acts (Crackout, Lostprophets, Hundred Reasons), Vex Red’s potential crossover appeal puts them at the head of any list of kindred upstarts. It may still be arguable whether nu-Britrock is going to have its day in the sun, but either way, Vex Red aren’t going anywhere but up.

Imran Ahmed