If Market Lavington hold their Vintage Meet next weekend, there’s another slice of retrospection a fortnight after, on the other side of town, as Devizes Scooter Club tie their boots, affix their braces and hope to replicate the absolute magic of their first Devizes Scooter Rally, post-lockdown……
The 2019 rally attracted scooter enthusiasts and adherents of mod culture from afar as well as appeasing locals with a different kind of musical event from the norm. In chatting to many attendees there, at the time, it seemed while aside the large-scale scooter rallies, most tend to waiver dedication to their music program, simply booking the odd local mod cover band and concentrating more on the aspect of standing around admiring each other’s hairdryers, much like caravan clubs do!
And yeah, you know when a bunch of enthusiasts get together there’s going to be a little bit of that, but Devizes Scooter Rally last year was so much more than an appreciative window-shop of these flashy bikes. For a debut event it offered quality entertainment, market and food stalls of festival proportions, and was hailed a great success. A ton or ten of hard work from members of the Devizes Scooter Club has gone into replicating this success and providing our area with our own scooter rally, returning, but to a different venue near Whistley Road on the 29th – 31st July weekend.
To make doubly sure you don’t miss the news Devizes Scooter Rally is returning at the end of July, The Scooter Club team put up noticeboards on the edges of town, and even plastered their poster on side of refuse lorries; a mightily impressive bolt of marketing, I must say, but also, being scooter aficionados from afar won’t see them, it surely is a testament to the club’s wishes to welcome locals from outside of the niche market.
But we’re not here to discuss graphics, we’re here, hopeful Devizes Scooter Club can pull off another rally as outstanding as their debut, and to look at what’s on offer musically too. Because if there was one thing great about 2019’s, it was that the line-up had taken high priority. Good to note then, likewise, bands this coming rally have been tried and tested either at past Devizes Scooter Club events, or members bore witness to them performing at other events they attended. Saturday’s headliners Orange Street, for example, took the 2019 rally by storm, and I’d go out on limb to suggest they were undoubtedly the highlight of the event. My reasoning thus, while there’s handfuls of UK bands experimenting by merging electronica or punk into ska, few remain faithful to that original sound, and, as the name suggests, Orange Street really punch above their weight with this tenet.
Similarly, Bedfordshire’s All That Soul, playing on the Friday, made a welcomed visit to Devizes Scooter Club way back in 2018. Though principally “function band,” if they played your function, I swear it’d be the one function you remember for the rest of your life. Their perfect pitch and tight backing band perfectly replicates classic Motown and Atlantic soul of yore, and are not averse to slipping in funk and disco too, making them a delight to dance and sing-a-long to.
I’m unsure if the Dorset-based Specials tribute headlining the Friday night, The Specialised have graced our backwaters in the past, but being the Scooter Club have close connections with other clubs in that area, just like the wildcard, Slade tribute, Sladest on Saturday, who I’m told by Lauren, (first lady of Devizes Scooter Club!) she’s seen them and they’re lots of fun, I’m sure they’ve been tried and tested too! This said, any Specials tribute is alright by me; can’t go wrong really!
And of course, last but by no means least, I’m glad to see our own mod-Britpop-ensemble, the fantastic Roughcut Rebels on that line-up too, a band who always bring the party with them.
Between bands there’s DJs, including renowned Northern soul disc jockey Terry Hendrick, the customary ride-out and who’s got the flashiest scooter competitions, along with traders and, it goes without saying, licensed bar. But perhaps the most alluring aspect is the ticket stub. We’re looking at a more than reasonable tenner maximum for a day pass, and while a weekend ticket is £25, it includes camping, and campervans are a snip at an extra tenner.
This lack of the usual hidden extras in price, gives the undeniable impression Devizes Scooter Club is thoroughly out for the love of it rather than the profiteering, to go “one step beyond” and provide an inexpensive showdown of memorable proportions, and do it, unlike many others, without punters getting that sinking feeling they’ve been ripped off. Aside the great line-up, then, it’s a whopping incentive to lip up fatty, find Devizes Scooter Club on Facebook, which I’ve done for you already, HERE, and get yourself equipped with a wristband before they sell out.
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