Da Vinci at Drummonds in Worcester
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Da Vinci at Drummonds in Worcester

There was only one problem to be solved this week - who's the best frontman going? My quest began at Drummonds Bar in Worcester's New Street with an outfit who's recent appearances can be measured in terms of hens' teeth - i.e. not very often!

I last saw Da Vinci about 18 months ago at either the Boar's Head in Kidderminster, where the audience was pretty sparse, or close to that at Worcester Beer Festival on Pitchcroft, where the audience was about a thousand or so. The oufit that have been at the cutting edge of the New Wave of Prog Rock showed that they're without doubt one of the great acts to have come out of our region over the last few years.

I've seen Da Vinci play to floorboards and full houses - but they've always been totally professional - and frontman Declan Sharma is without doubt one of the most theatrical performers you'll see in your life, who tells a story of outpouring with every number like Last Chance Saloon and Sarah from their maiden Razorblade World album.

I'm not sure Da Vinci have the momentum, at the moment, to be a fully gigging and touring band - but I think it would be magnificent if they threw themselves into the project fulltime. They're currently working on their third rock opera album - this time with a West Side Story theme - but if there's an outfit who badly need to be seen on a much larger stage (and really soon) then these geezers have my vote every time.

Andy O'Hare

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