Anyone in need of a quiet night in would have been advised to avoid Static Gallery on Tuesday evening.
In fact anyone who’d rather not have their ears pummelled by a sonic sledgehammer should probably have stayed at home. Or maybe gone to Mello Mello.
For tonight, lucky Liverpudlians are served up yet another classic dose of Samizdat noize. Aided and assisted by Jon Davies aka La Racaille for his first outing as promoter.
We’re a tad pushed due to work commitments and unfortunately miss openers Bagheera, but when four separate people say ‘did you see the first band, they were ace,’ it’s a safe bet they’re ones to look out for.
Picture Book, should be renamed Puzzle Book, an enigma of toys and slightly unfathomable ideas which are confusingly tangled rather than seemlessly interwoven.
Heavily-treated guitars vie for attention amid dense drum pads, break beats, electric violin, two keyboards and three-part harmonies. There’s shades of Goldfrapp, Bjork, Roni Size and even early Prodigy but little hangs together with any cohesion. Instead it too often sounds like three bands playing three completely differing songs.
Balloons, we’ve seen twice in as many weeks, but where at Monochrome they seemed a tad lacking, tonight they unleash a killer new tune in the shape of Schadenfreude.
Evolving in the shape of three suites it begins with slow-burning malevolence before a quite remarkable rhythm section – complete with thunderous sticks action and bass slapping – triggers an ear-melting attack of machine gun riffs and stabbing duel keys.
It’s sensational and the clear standout track of the evening.
Another standout is Mi Ami‘s Jacob Long – a godzilla of a bassist with a beard straight out of Clash of the Titans.
Together with former Black Eyes vocalist/guitarist Daniel Martin-McCormick and drummer Damon Palermo, Mi Ami produce the kind of racket you’d imagine an army of rabid Zulu’s would make as they prepare for armageddon.
There’s zero subtlety. Maximum damage. And just in case you wanted more, Martin-McCormick layers the carnage with yelps akin to a dying kitten.
What makes the San Fran trio so effective is that despite the unremitting volume and devastating clatter, you can’t fail to dance.
And that’s exactly what the onlookers do – dance to songs for the deaf.