Kagoule, Elevant, Wife: EBGB’s, Liverpool
Paul Riley may be feeling his age, but that doesn’t stop him enjoying a bumper night at EBGB’s from Loner Noise.
At this writer’s time and state of life, I feel older than my years. I spend more time in my house than out of it, and evenings are more likely to involve a glass of good wine (OK, a bottle) and vinyl, than an actual real live band.
One gets in the habit of staying in, thinking that it is sensible and mindful of one’s money – the way Mum always said one should be, until it gets hard to want to venture out to do something as crazy as being in TOWN, at NIGHT. Sooner or later, the realisation dawns: ‘Fuck me, I feel old.’
Still, it takes some doing to break the cycle; something really special to actually get your arse out the front door and into the dark.
Happily, we’re not short of reasons to do that in our fair city, and Loner Noise are a prime example. Purveyors of the noisier side of life, their releases and their live shows are always packed chock full of goodies. Tonight’s offering was no different.
Wife kicked off the show – hypnotic rhythmical sections interspersed with barrages of noise. There was more than a sprinkle of Nirvana, both in vox and bass, and the general chaos surrounding the set, which was mostly a good thing, however professing to have not practiced for six months is not a good way to endear yourself to a crowd.
Anyway, moan over, and onto the band that got me out of the house.
Elevant: one of the best guitar bands in the city. Rock seems to be anathema these day, so we’ll say guitar band, and the ‘rock’ label doesn’t really do them justice. They’re only one-third guitar anyway, and, as is the caprice involved with bands playing venues of mixed quality, different elements of the sound present in variable levels of quality.
We’ve seen Elevant sound boss, and we’ve also seen them sound shit (victims of bad PAs and rubbish sound engineers rather than poor performances, I might add). As Anna (bassist) tends to favour a fairly trebly and brash timbre, she can sometimes get a little lost in the mix. Tonight was a goodun – the balance was great and the bass in particular was as punchy and in your face as we suppose the band would hope it to be.
The evening turned out to be Attack of the Bass Ladies. Kagoule‘s Lucy also smashing the shit out of it on her rather lovely P-bass.
Kagoule‘s mix of male and female lead vox keeps the uninitiated guessing and adds and extra element to the set, which has a sound somewhere between talking heads and the breeders.
Sections with clean (ish) guitar and fuzz bass are a bit of a weird juxtaposition to loud, obnoxious sections, and the whole thing works wonderfully. The angular and awkward sections add a piquancy which is only improved by the slow move toward a juggernaut drones and riffage which proves that restraint and intelligent songwriting can save rock and roll.
All in all, a fucking great night. I’m currently writing this with a glass of red on my hand, and the vinyl soundtrack is Kagoule‘s Strange Entertainment.
Image: Kagoule at Wrong Fest by Brian Sayle.