Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Mae Shi + Rolo Tomassi + PRE + Kasms @ Barden's Boudoir.

Sorry its been so long. I've been busy but i've got alot to tell.
This gig was so long ago now that my recollections are a bit hazy but I'll try my HARDEST to get across what it was like.
Barden's gloomy basement interior mirrored the weather outside and the atmosphere, post-festivities, of the Boudoir's clientele. This darkness was probably the reason for the couple of "Winter Warmer" shows that the East-London venue put on and they really did heat up my January blues.

KASMs began the preceedings with a confident, if what dreary performance. Guitars buzzed and droned with feedback and sporadic notes while miniscule singer Rachael wrapped her red lips around the microphone and let off high-pitched screams as she writhed around on the floor. At times it was a dynamic, energetic set, especially when the guitarist and drummer switched instruments - it seemed to click then - but it also drag a bit and the some of the tracks descended into a dirge but it was promising for such a young band.

I'd seen PRE before, supporting These Arms Are Snakes, and they really can put on a show. This time was no different. Lead singer Akiko was a bundle of frenzied energy, leaping around, across and over the stage so much that i'm amazed she remembered to yelp and shout along to the fast, intense music backing her. The songs were short and immediate, finishing before you've had time to fully comprehend the mayhem taking place before your eyes but that seems to be the point, that there wasn't one. It's not meant to make sense, its just meant to happen. The band invite a guest singer on stage half way through the set, introducing her as Lily Allen. It wasn't but she managed to maximum entertainment by bouncing, dancing and shouting through her couple of tracks. It was a tight, commanding set from a wild and unpredictable band. Who knows what they'll be like next time.

My Rolo Tomassi review is to be featured in funfunfun zine issue #2 so I hope you can wait til then for it. Other content for fff#2 is a Jetplane Landing interview, Slow Club live, some new(-ish) bands and cd reviews.

LA's The Mae Shi take the antics even further. Their set begins with the acapella chanting of the naive refrain "I want almost everything" and their childish, ADH-like excitement maintains a constant level of compulsion to keep your eyes on the stage to see what happened next. They turned the houselights off, changed costumes and entwined their instruments with fairylights, which inevitaby got tangled and pulled down by the end. Their set-list spanned their lifeti
me, from the short, barked punk tracks of their early career to the almost poppy single Run To Your Grave, off new album HLLLYH, which is so catchy on record but its damn contagious heard live. You can literally hear the band's enthusiasm radiating from their music. The set drew to a close with one of the crowd playing guitar, flashing fairylights strewn across the stage and a bewildered but stupidly grinning funfunfun feeling all warm and fuzzy on the inside. Brilliant.

KASMs - Ode To Millers
PRE - Fudging On Our Folks
Rolo Tomassi - Cirque Du Funk
The Mae Shi - Run To Your Grave

Thanks to Roman David from I Shook The Royal Throne for the photo :)

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Short Road

I don't think i posted about Short Road when it just got released but the story behind it and the rise of Wax Stag is an interesting one. Firstly Wax Stag is the pseudonym for Robert Lee's keyboard-driven, electropop bubble machine. Rob is also in Clark, Friendly Fires and Tack Til but creates danceable, fun bleepy jams on the side.
Short Road was written about three years ago but ended up on Hot Chip's DJ Kicks mix cd last year after Rob had given Alexis from Hot Chip a CD-R of the track years back and they liked it alot.
This exposure has forced the track to be released officially and Rob is in the process of recording a Wax Stag album.
I found a few remixes of the track in my inbox last week and so I thought you should all hear them.

Wax Stag - Short Road (Metal On Metal Remix)
Wax Stag - Short Road (Wax Stag Remix)