Phoenix Factor finals Rock the Valleys!

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March 27th, saw the streets of Treorchy in the south Wales Valleys bare, the reason? Hundred’s had turned up at Parc Hall to support local talent in the Phoenix Factor final. The music gig contest was to showcase the talents of the people in the community while raising money and awareness for local charity Community Cancer support. Contestants had been chosen from auditions held across RCT and included a mixture of bands and solo artists.

The finalists were Treorchy girl band ‘Sweet Manics’, who came runners up in the contest, Llantrisant band Four words later, Pontypridd band High demand, Broadway singer Hanna Wakeford who finished third wowing the Judges with her rendition of wicked’s “Popular”, solo artist Sam Leon and 13 year old contestant Alysha Morgan.

The winners of the show however were the Merthyr band ‘Man of the hour’ who beat off the stiff competition from contestants to win with their mix of guitar rhythms and pop punk music in a fun and enjoyable night of music entertainment.

The atmosphere was immense and friendly, with people from across the Valleys turning out to support and cheer on every performance. The show was judged by PLUGGED IN’s very own Darren Warrner alongside 4th Street Traffics vocalist and guitarist Alistair (chief) and Twice my sizes Lloyd and Bob, who had the task of deciding the winner, a difficult task considering the talent on offer!

The show also featured guest performances from local band ‘Twice my size’ and ‘4th Street Traffic’ who got everyone up on their feet giving the people of the Valleys a performance they’ll be buzzing about for weeks to come. They played many great songs including Astray and Perfect circle, turning the venue into a storm of incredible noise, showing us again why it wont be long before these guys get a record deal!

The night ended to soon for this reviewer and many more, with everyone asking when the next Phoenix Factor will be. Fortunately as the night ended I managed to catch up with Rich from ‘Man of the hour’ to ask what they thought of the event.

My first questions were how did they feel being part of the Phoenix factor and if they were nervous in the final to which he replied:

“It was a good experience, and a very rewarding one, so it felt good to be part of something which could potentially take off to new heights next year.
The night was just a barrel of laughs really, all the competitors backstage were really friendly and all got on with one another. Especially the girls from ‘Sweet Manics’, they were good fun to be around,

We always have full confidence in our music, so I’m not gonna say that we knew we were gonna win, but we were very confident in the songs we played.”

They had played two different songs, both I then asked how they felt playing alongside 4th Street Traffic.

“They’re a really good and relatively big band, so it was nice to share a stage with them, and use their gear. They didnt seem nervous when we were using it, im sure they trusted us haha.”

But of course the main question on my lips was how they felt about winning and what it was like hearing ‘Man of the hour ‘called as the winner:

“We were very pleased we won, we were pretty surprised actually as we felt we could’ve given a better performance, but our months of hard work paid off. I think it was because we hadn’t gigged in such a long time, we thought that we maybe could’ve played better.

It was a great feeling to hear “Man Of The Hour” being called, although there were a few boo’s you’re always gonna get that aren’t you?”

So having one the Phoenix Factor whats next for man of the hour?

“Well with the recording time we won, we’re gonna complete a 5 track ep which we’ve had on the cards for so long, but setbacks such as people leaving put the brakes on it. We’re also going to gig as much as we can in the coming months just to promote ourselves as much as possible really.
We would definitely do it again, it was a great laugh and good fun.
Just be sure to check out our myspace page for new tracks, up-coming gigs and constant updates on the world of Man Of The Hour.”

So with the title of Phoenix Factor Idol under their belt, a CD recording session and much more we can expect to see ‘Man of the hour’ Very soon! Be sure to check them out ( and for more information on the event its worth visiting the website

Hey you can even audition for next year!


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