Millie Manders brought her band from the English capital to Ystrad Rhondda RFC and the local population were all the better for this trek. Millie and her troops were intent on clocking up a late afternoon set in the valleys before moving on to record another South Wales gig before the night was out. Fair play! This was not a take the money and run jamboree because what we had here in this renowned Gelligaled Road venue amounted to a set of substance.
Millie and her ska-punk led posse have self penned tunes aplenty and the odd cover version adds to the appeal.
The likes of the infectious stomp of Bacchus lead the assault and it is such a shame that the likes of this radio friendly fare does not dent the charts because that is where this sing-a-long style deserves to reside. Millie leads the proceedings and there are elements of Poly Styrene, Pauline Black and Hazel O’ Connor and others in a delivery that never strays below 100%. If you are new to the Manders beat check her out online and also head to the likes of: Teddy (with overtones of The Ruts), Little Big Mouth ( touches of The Bodysnatchers), Obsession Transgression (a nod to The Selecter), Raw (adopting a more mainstream approach) and the list goes on (e.g. Demon, Hole in your Chest, Thoroughbread Potato Head as well as Mr Stupid).
The lively Londoner and her band could not have asked for a more intimate venue and a gathering of punters paraded their moves inches away from the act. Manders has a mixed musical heritage that also incorporates classical, big band jazz, acoustic and soul that allows her to dip in and out of scenes while also showing her respect to the likes of James Brown and Van Morrison. She has a big voice that fires out some astute and entertaining lyrics that also enhance the product. Millie Manders and her marching men may not get paid mega bucks but in return they offer a real value for money on stage package.