Live review: The Kull / The Cult of Dom Keller / Cuban Crimewave / We Show Up On RadaR

24 Aug

The Kull, The Cult of Dom Keller, Cuban Crimewave and We Show Up On RadaR played at Rescue Rooms on Friday 21 August 2009

Reviewed for LeftLion.co.uk

In an evening that exemplified why Nottingham’s independent music scene is so very impressive and varied, the audience at Rescue Rooms on Friday night were treated to a foursome of some Notts’ finest musical talents.

Kicking off the night were one-man-show We Show Up On RadaR. Playing a solo acoustic set, Andy Wright looked rather exposed up there by himself, but showed a charming vulnerability with tentative vocals, subdued guitar work and a drawn demeanour which became more animated as the set progressed. With whimsical subject matter (my favourite being a song about ‘a sparrow with manic depression’) tinged with a hint of melancholy, he captured and lulled the audience.

Next up was 3-piece powerhouse Cuban Crimewave. The first words I wrote about this band were ‘power’ and ‘energy’, and I was stuck with just those two for around 10 minutes whilst I tried to fathom just how so much noise could come out of one bass, a drum kit and a singer. With inventive, tight beats that make you get off your arse and pay attention, the most sound you’ve ever heard come out of a bass guitar and a writhing, mad-as-badgers singer, these guys are anything but standard. Every aspect of this small band stood out to make for an awesome live show.

Taking the stage next were The Cult of Dom Keller, who in total contrast to the previous two acts furnished the audience with a set consisting of only three songs of driving psychadelia chock full of reverb and feedback. Their long, intricate jams are the antithesis to the standard 3.5 minute song, and it’s not often that you hear music played like this anymore. Their set was intense, musically accomplished and slow-moving but certainly not laid back, and was technically complex without being self-indulgent.

Finally came The Kull, whose dark alternative music was the perfect closer to a night of such varied artists. With a dense line-up including three guitarists, their sound was rich and epic whilst maintaining an intricate feel with each instrument contributing distinct elements to the music. They were eerie, haunting and powerful with a tight rhythm section driving their set forwards, and dark without being depressing. There was a potent vein of angst running through their music yet it wasn’t melancholic – there was energy and abruptness throughout every song. An excellent end to an impressive night of local music.

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