Four for the price of three in October.
Ypsmael. We squeezed in an extra set for this show, Ypsmael who we’d been after booking for a while was in the UK on a brief tour at short notice so it seemed rude not to. He started his set casually strumming his guitar a few times light shimers that fed into his chain of effects and eventually came back expanded by reverb in great bassy washes and far falling footsteps. Stick thumps, paper tears and penny whistle all go in at various stages ending up in some abstract state that has the expansiveness of space and the claustrophobia of undersea.
Asem were quickly up replacing them; Sara Selim on laptop electronica and GotoR on rangly guitar. Sara started the set with skittering reverb beetles with Gotor playing clean circulating notes into loops and wah-wahd thin lead lines. Vincent price and sonmeone I don’t recognise made an appearance with some american poetry and portentious bass drums and it all gets a bit psychedelic as Gotor goes heavily into Robby Krieger territory before eventually winding out on bells and ticking and dulcimer.
Scottish James Brown got a little looser, it was a little more chaotic on stage; stand up drums, another guitar, toy keyboards and a wonky mic stand in what looked like the least convenient spot. They started with a lovely bass drone and chiming notes picked out on the Casio. The drums either clicked by with clockwork precision or stammered unconvincingly, Tim fed a cornet into a loop (and always at an angle I couldn’t photograph) and analogue delay played with time, in several senses – once taking back to the 19th century with some lovely dreamtime chimebox before slamming me into the early 2000s with some indietronic fluff of detuned keyboard and murky guitar strumming. And then off into surprising bass tones. A joy of lurching stagger.
Carrying on the alternation between sly and slick The Priests of Nothingness sneak up on us with Derek and Dr David Reby slipping field noises and sliding effects around while Rob arpeggiates up and out with Moog and drum machine, it all sounds so easy, but was creepily effective with the bass of the Fallow Deer washing underneath, before it slips down into spooky interludes where synth, deer and slowed birds vie for the strangest noise and Derek plays acoustic guitar notes and building back up for a bit of a groove at the end.