In an era where most bands insist on being note perfect, some vitality and shamanistic spark can be lost. But Scala retains the unpredictability essential to tub thumping rock. The audience crowd's and drapes itself over the balconies and gangways as if it's an illegal fighting den. So it's no surprise that the three acts tonight were raw, high voltage and suffered a few technical hiccups.

First up were N'Shukurawa Boys (not strictly true, one of the trio is a girl), who, somewhat refreshingly, just seemed to want to have a lot of fun and, for the most part, the punters went with them; although an attempt to bring them into a sing along during 'Candy People' fell foul of an unwillingness to take on the mastery of Japanese required. The three band members rotated instruments, lead, bass and drums, and turns to climb on top of the speaker stacks. They appeared to be kitted out from a fancy dress outlet. However it wasn't really parody. They just seemed to enjoy the idea of being crazy rock n roll stars. "I am rock n roll!" roared main vocalist Marya Lane after body surfing across the audience. "We are no professional, no need professional!" The amateurishness couldn't disguise the fact that this was often thrilling psych punk. One track in particular had a hypnotic, driving riff. New single 'Hello, 999' is out now.

Next along were Telegram whose psychedelic new wave is rich in promise. Although setting a more serious, sombre tone in skinny, black jeans and pointed Chelsea boots they weren't without a bit of fancy dress adornment themselves, with androgynous lead guitarist, Matt Wood, donning a false moustache. Debut single 'Follow' due for release in early November was a highlight. Vocals from Matt Saunders, bouncing on his toes, soared over excellent punchy riffs. This GramGram outfit could be going places.

And so to headliners Bo Ningen, heralded by some as the most exciting act on the live circuit and with a couple of albums (Bo Ningen and Line The Wall) behind them. There have also been some impressive collaborations, including Jenni Beth of Savages and a billing at Yoko Ono's Meltdown Festival this year. Their appearance is indeed striking; black hair down to the waist, two of them in dresses and much banshee-like, flailing abandon under a welter of strobe lighting.

They certainly got us moving, but in my case, to the back of the auditorium. This kind of ear-splitting, melody-less thrash can be a quasi-religious experience, and to their credit the band does generate a decent mosh pit, but on this occasion staples such as 'Daikaiwei' and 'Henkan' blended into an unending dirge and I was forced to detach myself from the devoted ritual of the pit as I had become bored. After the encore the boys seemed to want to smash their instruments, but perhaps they can't afford to just yet. Bo Ningen means Stick Men. I'm afraid that by the end I felt well and truly browbeaten with one.