Yeah! It's the weekend! Let's party!! First up Theatre Of The Absurd with a tune about...cancer. Yes, the weekend has landed. Actually I can think of no better way of ending the working week than watching Greg's (who is the Theatre) take on how shite the world is. He comes across a bit Morrissey in places, albeit a Morrissey who's had the shit kicked out of him by life. Listen to Winter of My Discontent...that's some dark shit. I loved the audience baiting too. There's too much apathy in a lot of crowds these days. Music ain't a fucking backing track, it's the fucking focal point. Got it? Good.
Right. After the acoustic set, Greg returned in another guise as lead mentalist with She's a Kamikaze Machine. Swapping the introspection for some serious screaming and thrashing, about SAKM were gloriously scrappy tonight. You get the feeling there's some tension in the band, which is kind of what you need. Things went wrong, leads came out...but you know what? It don't matter. A live performance is just that. If you want perfection you listen to a CD. It's how a band handles adversity that really counts. Do you stand there and act all awkward or put even more energy into it all and just fucking go for it? Thankfully SAKM did the latter and I love 'em for it. Greg's in yer face audience moshing, Carlo's meaty drumming and Malc's grim determination...the band name says it all...death or glory.
Next up Cromwell's League, shades of The Futureheads and Bloc Party melded with older new wave influences, they've clearly paid their gigging dues with a polished and impressive set of strong tunes (Sunday Dress was a highlight). Both vocalists have really good voices too that work together particularly well. Full marks for writing a track about Sylvia Plath too, the slowest number of the set but played with real passion.
Right, time to feel the noize. It's Wander Phantom. Lead Phantom, Callum, has an almost operatic voice, kind of Ozzy meets Axl (with a dose of Mr Rotton for good measure) that could easily scare the bejesus out of young children. That's all a good thing by the way. Musically they lurch brilliantly from Krautrock-esque noodling to all out sonic assaults that rip out your heart, push it through a mincer then feed it back to you through your ears. Listen to their My Space tracks and you'll see what I mean...either that or you'll have me sectioned.
Finally, the hotly anticipated Die! Die! Die! set. All the way from New Zealand (who seem to be producing more than their fair share of great bands at the moment) they're that glorious beast - a punk band with real tunes. Sure, Sideways Here We Come has a punk heart, but there's a (dare I say it) pop soul in there too (The Buzzcocks side of pop obviously). Performance wise, it's the real deal with the lead singer diving into...and through...the audience, writhing around the floor and thrashing about like someone wired to the mains. Their guitarist spent the entire set pacing back and forth across the stage like a caged beast and the drummer kicked ass to such an extent that Greg was forced to make his third appearance of the night to hold the kit in place. The whole set was a highlight, but 155 in particular, dedicated to The Scare, was awesome. Fast, messy, loud...call it what you will...but with a performance as spleen rupturing as this one, Die! Die! Die! are (cheesetastic but heartfelt link ahoy!) here to Stay! Stay! Stay!
So there we go. Ears bleeding but soul enriched it was yet another great night. As ever respect to the Plasic Noise DJ's for the between set tunes...Oh Bondage Up Yours!...good choice. Spex, drugs and rock n'roll.