By Emma Winters
Resident of Sudbury
The Apex's moving floor was configured to provide a moshpit
It was highly anticipated and the opening of Bury St Edmunds's hottest new venue took place with over 450 teenagers jumping about to five acts in the first heat of BurySOUND 2010.
My first impressions were that The Apex was trying to cover too much as a venue by being designed to facilitate many different things such as live music, theatre and conferences.
But as soon as the night was underway such impressions were shattered.
The venue's floor had been lowered to provide a standing area in front of the stage.
It worked as a moshpit because the audience were in a kind of pit anyway, but there was plenty of space to stand if you didn't want to be involved in the pit, without compromising your view of the performance.
Up first were The Ascots who described themselves as 'a little socialist angst if you wanna have a listen'.
They kicked off with an instrumental intro followed by covers of Jamie T and provided a steady introduction to the night.
Twisted Piglet are through to the final on Friday 12 November 2010
Flying on stage next were Twisted Piglet. With comedic songs - one about falling for a girl with swine flu - they somehow oozed stage presence without actually moving that much, and still worked the crowd into a small frenzy.
Bringing the stage to life were Go.Fly.Win who grabbed the night by the horns and gave it a good ol' shake to.
You can watch video of the band rehearsing at The Apex here:
Fight Like Sharks sauntered on next and they certainly fulfilled unspoken promises of the liveliest band of the night.
The security guards, like angels in high-vis, waded in to calm everyone down.
Ending the night, with the only female to take to the stage were Keep 'em Keen.
Their set was designed to please and contained Paramore covers and that trademark sound that comes with young Bury musicians.
Some of the comments about the new venue included 'it's like a mini-Brixton Academy on the inside, but like a 5 star hotel on the outside' and 'the stage is massive, I can actually move on this one'.
Keep 'em Keen singer Jade Donno was the only female on stage in heat 1
It is a unique venue and holds 650 standing or 515 seated in the main auditorium with more space in the conference rooms and bar area.
It is very spacious, airy and finished with nice brick and wood, rather than a chrome palace or magenta hell like some older, converted venues.
The Apex will do wonders for helping to put Bury on the map.
Compared to the town's Corn Exchange, the stage was easily twice the size and there is a larger backstage area.
There was a more extensive lighting rig, hanging from the extremely high rise ceiling, which added to the amazing acoustics of the venue.
Parking will never be an issue as a large car park is nearby and, as it is in a well-known part of town, there should be no difficulties finding it.
If something more specific for live music is built elsewhere, it may loose some of its appeal.
Until then I think we should all take advantage of this brilliant venue right on our doorsteps - gone are the days of trekking to Camden to see the hottest new band!
The two bands that are going through to the BurySOUND final final on Friday 12 November were Twisted Piglet & Go.Fly.Win.
Heat 2 is on Friday 22 October. For more details visit St Edmundsbury Borough Council's
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