Danko Jones // The Kut // Live Review // Thelka // Bristol

The Kut at Bristol Thekla, 12 Dec 2023

As we roll up to the Thekla (it’s a boat!) and make our way down into the venue, a black curtain is up as the Kut is running a late sound check. After a quick visit to the bar, the curtain has gone, and the ‘one-woman army’ The Kut, AKA Princess Maha’s guitar and vocals is leading a rousing punk-rock assault on an appreciative crowd. Blending a 90’s grungy vibe with a catchy, modern edge, this is a clap-along and sing-along, have-fun set and the audience is loving it.

Accompanied by Daisy Pepper on bass, 2nd guitarist Jake Turl and drummer Violet ‘the Cannibal’ Stow on high-energy drums, this band are showing a very professional level of musicianship as they smash through a set featuring songs from the Kut’s number one album GRIT. Princess Maha climbs onto Violet’s bass drum as she belts out ‘Fun when you’re Winning’.

It’s a shame that it’s such a short set, but The Kut has won over the crowd with a cracking support show. The anthemic ‘Bad Man’ and ‘And 1 More’ leave them wanting, well… more! With an invitation to come and say hello at the merch stand, The Kut has left the stage. See their full set if you get a chance!

The Kut



Danko Jones at Bristol Thekla, 12 Dec 2023

An absolutely huge subsonic intro splatters the audience against the walls and a smoking stage gives way to Danko Jones with ‘Guess Who’s Back’. It’s loud. It’s extremely loud. Danko’s band are immediately spot on, precise and kicking arse. After ‘Get High’, Danko launches into his famous banter. ‘The THEKLA!’ he growls. ‘What a great name!’, ‘How’s everyone in Bristol?’ the audience roars its response. They are fanatical, they’re lapping up every word as he gurns and sneers at the crowd.

A mini mosh pit suddenly erupts, as they play on through the set but it’s not that welcome in a small and crowded venue like this, and the instigators are shoved back into line. The mixed-age and about one-third female crowd calms down a little but it’s still a gig with a lot of fist-pumping, jumping around and air guitars are chugging away. Danko’s fans are dedicated, and it shows.

Danko continues to banter with the crowd, inviting and daring them to heckle. He presents his fury throughout the set, he rarely smiles but the humour is always there. He says, ‘Thank you for your aggressive compliments’ with a rare smirk, then ‘This song contains a lot of fuck words!’ as they play ‘Good Time’. The band is not into histrionics of any kind. No fancy effects, they just play. Danko wields a single pickup electric with a volume control, there’s a small, lonely pedal board next to his amps, but that’s it. Danko introduces John Calabrese on bass and Rich Knox on drums. Equally, there’s no long drum or bass solo, these guys just play, and they play extremely well.

‘Where’s that guy writing a review’ snarls Danko as I visit the bar. ‘People should be here not reading reviews online!’ the set continues with ‘Full of Regret’ and ‘Had Enough’. He has the audience in the palm of his hand as he plays ‘Cadillac’ and ‘My Little RnR’ and they leave the stage. The crowd are having none of it as they chant ‘Danko! Danko! Danko!’ and the band return for a very welcome encore. ‘Samuel Sin’, ‘Play the Blues’ and more banter about his stint in The Violent Brothers lead to the set closer ‘Shake your City’. Danko reintroduces the band and it’s over. Danko’s trio are masters of heavy blues rock and most definitely a must-see act.

Review: Dave Smith Price

Photography: Emma Painter 

Pacific Curd Photography



DANKO JONES is: Danko Jones – Vocals/Guitar, John Calabrese – Bass, and Rich Knox – Drums.



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