Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Black Sheeeeep

Andy Nice - The Secrets of Me

I’m a great lover of bizarre vibes, but every now and then I crave a bit of a contrast, something that doesn’t jab with evil intent or pull you through depressive corridors. This new mini offering from Andy Nice seems to fit the bill perfectly, its tracks being filled with an optimistic choreography, a layered cello radiating light. Whether it’s the plunked skip of Orangeblu or the rococo branches of Dr Titan, the vibe is upbeat, coloured. A loose embroidery of differing personalities flowing out from that bow drawn base in crosshatched outlines, like breeze caught swirls of lazy summer memory, warm moments to cherish. Loving that drunken helix of Holly at the Ivy banqueting on that tip-tapped gait or the romantically inclined harmonium swells of Ballax, things just seem to glide perfectly into place, like a quickly executed sketch that captures an essence without labouring the point. The album’s last track (a reworking of the first) neatly ends the experience as the cello rhythms are beautifully fleshed out in guitar flashpoints, offset with a scampering plastic cup beat. The soft swell of vocals from Maple Bee complete the picture, a sultry pleasure slipping through in ever quieter whispers.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The Masters Musicians of Bukkake, Rose Kemp and Team Brick

The Croft Bristol , Thursday 23rd July

Team Brick

Team Brick

Team Brick smothered us in a noise tarp, the margins all torn aluminium and poltergeist clatter… broken beats and mangled rhythms - melody bypasses of the highest order. Full on, then artfully retracted, shifting the focus into some superb Islamic chant / carpet bombed rant, feedback swung into bottom end squalor… my ears were bruised appendages …The sax sucking at the microphone - a belch of booming drone… cymbals and drum were in there at some point, then the most haunted of voices bloomed outwards, deep, bassy, gloriously rich, a mantra that descended into some hysterical broken throat duels with the Casio keys … Probably the best show I’ve seen from the man so far…

Team Brick

Team Brick

Rose Kemp

Rose Kemp

Rose Kemp’s guitar was a pure animal – an enormous sound, gnashing it’s teeth to the caustic abyss surrounding it… her cackle and smart erupting from between the words… her brow a knot of intent, that jackal edged riffology flirting with instability and disjointed exchange…the pick ups like hyenas chewing bottles, the vocals a crow pecked eye, cut-up on smeared psychosis …a vibe I could easily bury in my neighbours garden to hex his Coldplay addiction. An unrecognizable Cardiacs cover was in there amongst the tunes; totally miss by a disappointed Team Brick … something no amount of heckling could resurrect. A solo set of shadow craved bitter fruits.

The Masters Musicians of Bukkake were as mystical as they were doom mongering; the dry ice turned all candy floss under the lighting, the players dressed as beekeepers, presumably fumigating the hive. Visibility was a slash of abstracts; sounds became as fluid as the curling smoke. Tibetan and Indian caresses, bells falling in unison, then duel drums kicked out a spine for the three guitarists and Korgster to follow.

A yeti like front man climbs the stage, his matted hide piercing the pinkie whiteness, a strange perfume seeps up the nostrils, the silhouetted figure moved in Sasquatch slowness with alien vocals that fall out of an unseen mouth… a ritualised weasel creaking in ancient archaeologies …

then they hit the groove and it was transportation time where motion was the only logic, Charlie’s head disappeared in the fog like a whittled obelisk, as Paul’s was transformed into a shimmer of double exposure. Contour shaken, the music sucked at us, forging a contract in toppling notation and lush drumming… a strange unison that was incredibly addictive, a druggy codex of polarised bottle bottoms and curved distortion, to which we were just puppets hanging off the ever embroidered repetition. In two words - Absolutely amazing!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday, July 10, 2009

Her Master's Vice

Yeaaahhhhh, this is miles better than that huffing stuff a year back!!!… Sinister limbs and gurning skittle, cooking up blackened humour on hobo gauze. The quiet, serving to make that filthy chaos more cacophonous, like fisting yr with bleached, pointed bulb and splintered find… a nagging feeling, gnawing at you slowly, relishing every minute then exploding in barmy clarity – I’m digging this completely - even if it’s the pauper edition.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Thoughtforms and Disco Nasties

Saturday 4th July - The Bell, Devizes Wiltshire

A mild Summers evening, the spilled beer mixing with the summer air, beer festival antics over the Wharf-side, the cheesy feel-good vibes are excreted from the sausage machine as a tide of drunken stumps career like badly dresses zombies, Mr O explains that this is fighting/spew alley after the pubs slam their doors, I think maybe it’s something to do with the Victorian brickwork… but it’s way too early for that kind of shenanigans, as everyone seems to be group hugging, cheerfully intoxicated. On the way to the Bell we pass a wedding party, the bride a burly builder with an unique sense of haut couture…

Arrived, but didn’t look like anybody was there yet, so we retreated to Mr O’s for Oneida and tea - Enemy Hogs and slurping, as he showed off his latest Frome purchases … is that a plastic horse galloping across a grassy tit… the people inside look like they’re stuck in a 30’s timewarp, never heard of the band, but Paul was a treasure trove of musical ephemera, filling in the blanks, leaving us like Enid Blyton children hanging on his every word… time travelled quickly, stateside Polaroids, silhouettes and eclipsing suns, then it was back to the Bell ...

… We pay our 4 quid and we’re greeted with smiles from the Thought Forms posse, who were deep in sound-checking territory…

Later in the garden, the Yatesbury story teller is in full swing, telling us ‘Country tales, us townies will never comprehend’ … there was this ancient inquisition device nailed to the wall, Mr O reckoned it would make a great pyrotechnic display, I was thinking of burning fingernails and trophy hands.

Thought Forms were on good form, spreading their magic over this sleepy market town, as the trio worked up an aura of intense sonics and protracted storm…, sounds gliding down focused channels, then released from a jagged mouth of lush collapse and kissing tinnitus … The addition of cello was fab, it cut across those deep cords Deej was divining and the broken drum signals Guy was working through them, an obsessive vibe sucked at the air, godsped shadows raising the walls then cut dead -here’s hoping their Colston Hall show will contain a fifteen minute version.

On the heels of this, a slow languid sparseness grew out on glittering chords and chiming clandestine shapes. A geode of hypnotised ligaments, through which Charlie’s voice was poured, like an allegory, a alchemy of breath forms that collapsed into a prism of shattered guitar colour. The conjured spell, climbing above, then swallowed to a white eyed blistering, an orgy of convulsing canker. The last track was a sci-fi ravaged riff-age, a clenched fist explosion that climbed guitar satellites in fedback homage and smouldering ember.

Disco Nasties (all the way from Manchester), stated ‘if you like music you’ll hate us’, they couldn’t have been further from the truth as they turned out to be a satisfying punked-up pop fusion, a blur in fact - like a whizzed up J/Pante / Vampire Weekend hybrid but a thousand times more vivid than any Radio1 bleating lamb…

Hard n fast, not an ounce of bulbous, gurning expressions, burning up the banalities of life down hyperactive chords and doppel-gangered drums. The singer’s tee-shirt turned transparent from all that leaping about… my constant knee jerking quickly morphed into a seated mosh-down… a total loss of sound from the lead’s guitar failed to dampen the action, a blip that was quickly rectified....

At the end of the set, the mic stand fell at my feet, I couldn’t resist a scream of appreciation , but the wreckage of abandoned instruments turned it into a dog’s whimper... a little later, their girl drummer handed us all a 3trk home burn, which was met with a resounding - yeahhhhh! The only downer was finding some twat had given my car some key cut stripes.

Thursday, July 02, 2009