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“There will come a day when we will mourn and we will put on sad faces. But guess what? Today is not that day! Today, we are going to rock the rock!” screamed the lead singer of Fighting Traffic. And with those words, the local band paid tribute to the closure of McBride’s nightclub and kicked off the inaugural Rock The Rock concert at Bath Beach, St John, last Saturday. And from the time they hit the stage around 2:30 p.m. until the last performance by Nexcyx that started just after 8 p.m., the 18 acts and deejays did just that, much to the delight of the thousands of music fans who journeyed to the beachside East Coast venue for what organizers promise is only the first of many such shows. However, before the partying got going, Minister of Culture Stephen Lashley congratulated and commended the organizers for putting on such a show. “This is where festivals are going in Barbados, where we want to seek to create venues for our artistes to perform, make money but also to exhibit Barbados as an international destination for festivals of different genres of music,” he said. He then exhorted the crowd to enjoy the show. And they did! From the opening notes of Fighting Traffic’s first song Don’t Worry About It to Nexcyx’s last note, the crowd abandoned their chairs, their towels and their inhibitions and sang along to every word, proving that Facebook is almost as good as MTV, where local acts are concerned. A quick equipment change brought another local act PSILOS on stage. Drawing heavily from music off their live EP, the five-member outfit debut their new song The Dregs to a rousing response from the crowd. Singer/songwriter Sarah Lloyd brought a change of tempo to the concert, with newcomer Kadri replacing her at the microphone. And don’t think the concert was only alternative and rock music. Barbadian hip hop group Evablaze proved they could whip the crowd into a frenzy just like the rest of them. A plus on the night was that equipment changes were kept to 15 minutes and the intervening time was ably filled by deejays Boomtribe, Karpologist, K-Smith and Jus-Jay. The rush for the stage, however, began when local alternative icons Kite took the stage for the afternoon part of the concert. Hailed as the forerunners of most of today’s local alternative bands, Kite did not disappoint. They ended their set with their most famous song Firefly. Mind you, the crowd was not biased; it dished up the same enthusiastic responses for Trini artiste Farouk Jr Vanna Vee and Kin Sound System as well. The big three – Threads Of Scarlet, Cover Drive and Nexcyx – then took the ever swelling crowd into the night. Threads Of Scarlet, fresh off a United States jaunt, got the only encore of the night, but Cover Drive got the crowd’s adoration, with Nexcyx providing a fitting end to almost seven hours of music.