Archive | August, 2012

Savages and Palma Violets – Live

13 Aug

The Haunt, Brighton: Tuesday, August 12, 2012

Savages and Palma Violets have been hyped to the hilt with expectations stoked by both bands refusal to spill their songs all over the internet.

The chatter has intensified, even though the former are yet to sign a deal, while rumour has it the latter were snapped up by Rough Trade on the back of one track.

It’d be good to know which song it was that got the fresh-faced four-piece noticed: maybe it was the Clash-addled shout-along, or the swampy, Doors number where singer Sam Fryer gives Jim Morrison a run for his money in the frenzied cool stakes. But it was probably either Best Friends or Fourteen two catchy tracks that appear to have fallen off the back of the Libertines’ lorry.

The constant, underlying Farfisa organ is just about the only original touch, but at least they have the decency to ape more than one band. And they do it ridiculously well. They’ll be huge.

Female four piece Savages are similarly proud to wear their influences on their sleeves, although they fashion their gothic post-punk into a more consistent set.

Theirs is a sound proudly rooted in 1980 with its ghostly guitar, booming bass drum and frequently single note vocals, which are occasionally punctuated by severe ‘ohs’ across the verses.

Diminutive singer Jehnny Beth, armed with little more than an icy glare, is a captivating presence, though, jerking hypnotically through the livelier moments.

These can’t really be called choruses, however, they are merely heavier extensions of whatever went before.

It’s all ruthlessly executed and supremely accomplished but, on a musical level, it’s far too self conscious to really take off. They’ve nailed the sound they wanted, but it’s at the expense of any warmth or, heaven forbid, the occasional shade of light.


Ty Segall – Live

3 Aug

Green Door Store, Brighton: Wednesday, August 1 2012

If there was a night to forget your earplugs, this wasn’t it.

Ty Segall might look like a stereotypical San Fran slacker with his
shaggy blond mop and laidback demeanour, but his live show mirrors his prolific output. It’s relentless.

Having already released two albums this year with a third due before
Christmas, he’s not one um and ah when it comes to recording.

And he’s far from shy when it comes to churning out his quickfire,
scuzzed-up, garage rock racket on stage too; the distortion pedals were
plastered to the floor and the amps he didn’t blow up in the
soundcheck (seriously) were turned up so loud that noise pollution officials within a ten-mile radius were no doubt getting twitchy.

There were almighty howling guitar screeches, big, dirty streams of
feedback and crashing cymbals – and that was just in the first 30
seconds of the opener.

From then on, there was no preening or pretence as Segall and his band
ruthlessly dispatched a tinnitus-inducing tirade of fast-paced,
riff-heavy numbers. 

Amid the glorious din, it was Segall’s vocals that prevented the set from becoming a tad too one-dimensional with a mix of thundering verses, lacerating squarks and the occasional snear-cum-whine.

Nevertheless, it’d still be easy to chide Segall for a repertoire that is far from novel and has been done to death. And it’ll no doubt be done again. But towards the end, as those down the front crowdsurfed, swung from the rafters and clambered on to the stage, it seemed doubtful that anyone else could do it better.

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