I’ve had a storming rock n roll week since last Thursday, which has left me in the enviable position of not having enough of a chance to blog about any of the gigs that I’ve been too. So in homage to the mixtape, I’m putting a compilation together.
Whilst I still enjoy putting a CD or playlist together every now and again, it’s not quite as fulfilling as the sheer effort involved with tapes. I remember spending hours trying to seamlessly get songs to fade in and out of each other, or trying to juxtapose a quiet, thoughtful tune with an absolute belter.
Last Thursday it was great to head to Le Pub to check out Rough Music. They haven’t played a gig for quite a while, so despite being a Cardiff band, I’ve never managed to catch them live. They’re a pretty heavy band with punk roots, but the distorted guitars and screaming was always pinned back by a tight as you like rhythm section. Welcome to Shanghai is a pretty good indication of where they’re at, but having debuted some new material at the gig, it’ll be interesting to see how they take it forward.
Rough Music at Le Pub
On Saturday I ended up at Buffalo to see both El Ten Eleven and Nanook of the North. I’ve talked about how brill they both are a fair bit lately (here and here), so instead I’ll head straight into Sunday’s gig at The Moon Club. I haven’t seen such a varied line-up for quite some time. The night kicked off with Right Hand Left Hand playing probably the best gig I’ve seen them take on. Their instrumental post-rock relies on playing an unbelievably tight set, something that they always manage to do. The Moon suits them as a venue too, as it really gives the audience a chance to check out the band dynamics.
They were followed by The Jelas, who split opinion amongst the people I was with. I thoroughly enjoyed their 1990s lo-fi sound, which sounded a bit like a pumped up Pavement. The jaunty aspect was quite a clash with what came next. The Sleaford Mods‘ electronic beats sit quite under the radar next to Jason Williamson’s intense delivery. Despite regularly checking out hardcore bands, I haven’t heard such a ‘punk’ vocal delivery for quite sometime. There’s such anger and vitriol (and humour and profanity) in the delivery. It makes for quite a thrilling experience.
Having listened to a stripped back electronic effort the night before, Sam Duckworth’s efforts are a bit of a contrast. In his last set in Cardiff as Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly, he played the full set of Chronicles of a Bohemian Teenager. There was a good article in the Guide this week on why bands playing their classic LPs live isn’t a good thing, and whilst by and large I agree, Duckworth neatly avoids the predictable aspect by mixing up the order and messing about with the drum n bass heavy backing tracks. In and amongst the lyrical naivety (he was after all a teenager, and a more talented one than me), there are some fantastic song arrangements. All in all, a strong trip down memory lane before he retires the Get Cape Wear Cape Fly monicker.
So now I’m off to recover and rest. But it was worth it.