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Tuesday, 8 February 2011

LAST WEEK - Esben and The Witch, Richard Thompson, The Haunt and Old Mayer

Last week was a busy one. In amongst all the films, too-ing anf fro-ing from London and finishing off season 5 of The Wire I also caught three amazing shows and a slick new club launch!

I'm sure you've all heard plenty of noise about Esben and The Witch recently, their debut album Violent Cries was released last week and a tour was commencing. They plaid an awesome show at Pavillion Theatre, Brighton. Dark, moody, melodic, sporadic and so full of atmosphere you could get lost in it. They make complicated music using a range of loops, samples and riffs that they manage to pull together into some kind of musical cohesion. Yet they can also strip their music back to simply three people bashing the shit out of a drum (personal highlight). Great seeing a young band push themselves and music somewhere that results in more than just an immediate passive experience.

Here's their video for Marching Song.

Two days later I caught another astonishing show, the ever great Richard Thompson at The Dome. This guy is old now, but he's still the best damn guitar player I've ever seen and he has a band that puts todays indie boys to shame.

It's hard to find some real new and decent live footage of him and his band (they don't need no MTV vids) but this is a little taste from TV about ten years ago...

If you spend the best part of two hours watching this band play live you'll literally be blown away by the intensity, complexity and incredible natural flow and understanding of music that is impossible to replicate on record. These guys can take a song in 9/8 timing (olde folky English morris dancing like) and mix it with hell raising 80s metal guitar solos (that's not the whole show by the way) and make it sound not only credible but truly remarkable and incredibly visceral.

After that show and being slightly aware that I was the probably by far the youngest person in 2000 capacity venue, I fled to a place where I was probably one the oldest....

("In the right place at the wrong time? That's how I feel every day." Jack White)

The Haunt is a real trendy new dive (literally right on my doorstep), and the opening night saw some great acts such as Is Tropical, Romy XX and Kim Ann Foxman playing to some of Brighton's trendiest new hipsters....I can see many a debauched filled night taking place here...YES!

Pictures by Sam Hiscox

Check out the rest of the opening night here:

Finally, last night I saw my mate Adam's awesome band Old Mayer play at The Green Door Store.

I now have a new love for Metal and my mates screaming...but more on them some other time.....

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