Posts Tagged ‘gig’

Low @ Koko sometime in November – em, they were crap.

December 16, 2008

I thought this was going to be an evening of rare beauty.  Instead we got a ponderous, pretentious, over-blown set entirely lacking in subtlety or restraint.   Each song seemed to reach about a dozen thrilling crescendos and the pace of various songs was slowed, presumably with a view to giving maximum ‘atmosphere’ – but the beautiful, bleak and haunting harmonies don’t need over-egging and we don’t need more time to appreciate them.  All delicacy was lost, we were being asked to NOTICE THE BREATHTAKING HARMONIES rather than just listen to them.  I thought they fancied themselves quite a lot.  Also, they did some hideous kind of reggae-lite christmassy song – REGGAE-LITE FROM LOW.   We mentioned Culture Club.  They also did that ‘come they told me, pa rum pum pum pum’ christmas carol, whose name escapes me – this is one of my least favourite christmas carols and Low’s version seemed to go on for ever and ever.  Then we had some ‘Santa gone bad’ song accompanied with chords of doom.  This just about finished us off.  And we were not alone.  Suddenly a male, American voice shouted “This is a travesty!  I’ve been coming to see Low for 11 years and this is not the band I know”.   People booed the comment but I thought it was bang on the money.  Allan from Low tried to laugh it off, but the atmosphere had gone sour and early christmassy feelings were not to be found, so myself and boyfriend took ourselves off home early.    Sandinista sounded fantastic though.

Advertisements

Miniblog 4 – Melt Banana at ULU

June 30, 2008

Very loud and frenetic.  Good fun.  Pretty great really.  Did I mention loud and frenetic? 

I can’t and don’t listen to Melt Banana at home, but thought they were ace live.  I especially liked the seven short songs, each lasting only a few seconds, “that’s one…that’s two…that’s three”.  The singer is a little dynamo. 

The support act, DJ Scotch Egg (or am i completely making that up?) – seemed more performance art than gig.  Extraordinarily loud electronic tomfoolery. 

 

 

Airiel and Ulrich Schnauss at The Social

May 4, 2008

I can never think of clever titles for my posts. 

This was a night run by Sonic Cathedral ‘the night that celebrates itself’ (www.soniccathedral.co.uk), part of the somewhat surprising but welcome (to me anyway) resurgence of shoegaze.  We were promised DJ sets from electronic shoegazers James from Maps and Ulrich Schnauss, and live music by Autumn Chorus and Airiel.  Well, first up, we missed the DJ’ing by James due to drinking too long in the narrow and crowded bar upstairs (worth a visit btw – great jukebox, cheap ‘n’ cheerful menu including crisp sandwiches, interesting variety of booze, always lively).  James was in evidence for the rest of the evening, but I was too shy to go and say hello. 

When we finally made our ways downstairs Autumn Chorus were already playing.  This lot hail from Brighton and produce music of the post-rock variety with vocals.  We all agreed that the singer sounded a bit like Thom Yorke, Jeff Buckley and maybe Nick Drake.  So really, really upbeat and cheerful then.  They made a goodly noise, quite beautiful and delicate at times, but it all sounded a bit samey with no  memorable melodies or individual songs that really grabbed me.  Perhaps not the most accessible sort of stuff to listen to in a crowded little venue when you’ve never heard any of the material before – I reckon they are worth a second listen.

http://www.myspace.com/autumnchorus

Next we had a little surprise – instead of DJ’ing, we had a proper set from Schnauss.  Good visuals and great ambient shoegaze electronica (and there aren’t many people you could describe that way).  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9HOVwJq8b5A

Airiel are a “four man noise unit from Chicago”.   They are loud.  Really loud.  My ears were still ringing slightly the next morning.  They reminded me hugely of Ride (earlier Ride, when they were good), albeit with less impressive songs (i’m harping on about melody again here).  But their material is still pretty good, they played with youthful ferocity, and the general sound they produced made me happy.  Oh, and I haven’t seen such a very fine set of fringes since 1992.  I was less impressed by one of the guitarists standing on a table on stage for the entire set though – the stage is certainly very small (not actually fitting the drummer) and not particularly high, but this struck me as a bit wanky really.  I spent the set slightly hoping that his fringe would get caught in the lighting. 

http://www.myspace.com/airiel

I drank too much beer that night.  Had a bad hangover the next day (luckily had day off work).  Drank banana milk, tea, ribena, diet coke, water.  Started a thread on www.drownedinsound.com asking for recommendations for good hangover music.  Some sadists suggested hardcore techno – bastards!  Others were kinder, and I eventually found Galaxie 500, Slowdive, and Lemon Jelly to work the best.  I also dragged my sorry self out to vote in the London Mayoral election – may as well not have bothered given the stupid tory fucks that i am apparently living alongside.