Review & Photo Gallery: The Wytches + God Damn + Adore @ The Sunflower Lounge – 27/02/2014

It’s four months since Adore last played live and in that time they’ve polished their sound and their setup considerably. The frontman moniker is now shared fairly evenly between guitarist Michael Johnston and bassist Miles Cocker in a homage to the Jarmans’ anarchic divisions as the trio execute a set of almost exclusively new material. It’s fast and frenetic Nirvana expertly 90’s in its construction, driving bass-heavy grunge delivered with a sleazy Smashing Pumpkins lacquer. It’s the perfect beginning.

Playing the ‘hometown’ date of their tour with The Wytches, within one song of the Black Country’s God Damn being onstage, the moshpit begins. “We promised The Wytches some crowdsurfers,” they encourage and in trademark shambolic fashion, the crowd obliges. God Damn’s live performances are consistently impressive; unrelentingly violent assaults on the eardrums of those in attendance simultaneously retaining a melodic core which underlies the success they’re beginning to achieve nationally. Tonight the outfit play a selection from their 2013 Heavy Money EP as well as their forthcoming single Shoe Prints in the Dust which is released through One Little Indian in April. They extend their set for the occasion and as the drum kit is carried atop the crowd to the back of the room followed by the band themselves, it’s evident and just that God Damn are idolised here.

As such, Brighton-by-Peterborough trio The Wytches have their work cut out. Jack White vocals weave through sludgy doom-laden riffs and diverging time signatures. There’s  no questioning that The Wytches have tunes – Gravedweller and Carnival Law (both of which you can pick up on a free cassette if you’re one of the first 50 through the door) sit astride Wire Frame Mattress and Digsaw which secrete menace from their very  pores…it’s undoubtedly 60s influenced; it’s Temples if they grew some balls. But then there’s the slacker Crying Clown which demonstrates their ability to just as deftly craft a slower number. Altogether it’s a short-seeming set after the extensions of God Damn and it’s lacking in that final consolidating punch. However, it’s sordid and sexy in all the right places; it’s a promising footstep forwards.

Photos: Andy Hughes @AndyHPhoto



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