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Leading the charge of new breakthrough British rock n’ roll bands, Massive Wagons announced themselves on the big stage this year with ‘Full Nelson’, a UK Top 20 album (and also the No.1 UK Rock Album) Famed for playing shows the length and breadth of the country, and developing a hugely loyal grass roots following as a result, the band have also played all the major festivals including Download, Ramblin’ Man, Steelhouse and Planet Rockstock.
Fronted by the charismatic Baz Mills, the band has earned a reputation for anthemic, catchy songs with a lyrical edge that takes in everything from the perils of Facebook (‘China Plates’), the ignorance of casual racism (‘Billy Balloon Head’) and heartfelt tributes to their fallen heroes (breakthrough single ‘Back to the Stack’ is dedicated to Rick Parfitt of Status Quo). Singles taken from the album have been staple content on Planet Rock radio’s playlists, and have also been played on BBC Radio 2.
Massive Wagons courted controversy when a huge mural painting depicting the ‘Full Nelson’ cover art appeared on the side of a wall in the band’s hometown of Lancaster, and over 8000 people signed a petition to prevent its removal by the local council. The council eventually relented, and the mural has now become a site of pilgrimage for fans who flock to the location and post pictures online of themselves posing with the imposing artwork.
The band have followed up their chart success by playing shows with acts like Status Quo, The Wildhearts and The Dead Daisies, and will shortly announce a series of headline festival dates for 2019. With ‘Full Nelson’ hailed by Planet Rock Magazine as “powerfuly honest and fully convincing arrival”, the next few months will see Massive Wagons rise from cult heroes, to the mainstream status that their music deserves.
Hard hitting rock n' roll from the UK
Like the founding fathers of classic rock and heavy metal before them, Massive Wagons set about building their foundations on the road. Through 250 gigs in 3 years, hitting it hard on and off stage the five piece outfit proved they had the chops to compete with the veterans, and have gained a faithful following the old fashioned way. Guitarist Adam Thistlethwaite says this on the bands origins – “Before the band we were just five mates who loved rock music. We got together and started writing our own stuff – we took on every gig we were offered and became a slick live outfit pretty quickly. The live thing was, and still is what it’s all about... writing good songs and performing them well live, then adding that extra spark of energy. There's no pretence in what we do at all”
On the back of their stellar live reputation, Massive Wagons signed to Off Yer Rocka in 2014, joining a growing roster alongside The Quireboys and Bonafide. The eleven track album titled 'Fight The System' was released worldwide on the 4th August 2014.
Recorded at Axis Studio late 2013 and produced by the exceptional talent of Matt Elliss (Terrorvision/Black Spiders) the album was released to critical acclaim in the UK and Europe, propelled by the popularity of the bands first official single ‘Red Dress’, which featured on Classic Rock magazines ‘Heavy Rotation’ section.
“Monstrous slabs of melodic hard rock… must see live!” - Dave Ling
“A fantastic album wielding three guaranteed radio hits and a lot of good songs” – Metal Hammer
Many new friends were made in the 20 date UK tour that followed, alluding to Massive Wagons rising popularity. The band were invited to make festival appearances in Ibiza and Bloodstock Open Air, as well as returning to Hard Rock Hell in November, where 1800 people crammed in to watch the bands cumulative performance.
“Within minutes of Massive Wagons appearing on stage I was addicted to their excited demeanour and no bullshit rock n’ roll. The capacity crowd seemed to know they were witnessing something special” – Powerplay (@Hard Rock Hell)
2015 sees The Wagons gaining momentum. The bands first live album, brought on by fan demand, is currently in post-production with a release date expected to be announced soon. Vocalist Barry Mills comments – “We wanted to get that raw energy of a Wagons show out there for folk who’ve yet to see us. People always say to us ‘you look like you’re having a blast on stage’, well it’s true, we really are”
Writing for the follow up to ‘Fight The System’ is nearing completion, with recording sessions beginning in the summer - following a short UK tour in July and appearances at the Steelhouse Festival and Legends of Rock. Thistlethwaite surmises the bands current mindset -
“We’ve done a lot in a short time, but genuinely feel now is only the beginning. As with everything in life you get out what you put in, and Massive Wagons give it everything”