16 May 2008
Bradford Cox (he of Deerhunter) is a fragile looking creature, yet as soon as he introduces himself it's clear he's most comfortable in his own skin when he's behind a microphone and knob-twiddling his sequencer/looper. Despite the indulgent private jam overtones, this was a prodigious showcase of the ambient atmospherics and Beach Boys-esque melodies of his solo project, Atlas Sound. Reminiscent of Panda Bear's Person Pitch LP after a drenching of reverb, it was enchanting stuff. His acclaimed début album, Let The Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel, was released on 4AD earlier this month. Seek it out.
Atlas Sound - 'Recent Bedroom' (download here or listen below)
Ex Models play dirty, repetitive, abrasive and minimalist noise-rock, which if health and safety NAZIs had their way would come with a health warning for those with less than the strictest control over their bowels. The Brooklyn trio gripped the crowd with a feeling of nauseating wonder but it was the unfathomably amazing frenetics of drummer, Kid Millions (also of Oneida), which held most of the attention. New material from their forthcoming as yet unknown forth album is streamable from their myspace...
“Look at me! Get a snap of me! I'm rocking out!” cried the contrived mosh-pit. Thankfully LA Smell scene's flagship act, No Age, rose above the artificial dramatics of the more vacuous members of the audience and ripped through a set of short, sharp and distorted drone-rock shots to the arm. The simplicity of their punk past with former band Wives is still traceable through Randy Randall’s rippling undercurrents that fluctuate beneath Dean Spunt’s structured percussion and throaty vocal, particularly on the riotous noise of ‘Brain Burner', which glued my senses in awe. But for failing to relinquish the hold that fellow Smellions HEALTH have on the title for gig of the year thus far, No Age's set was a complete triumph. Well done them. Recently released Nouns LP is essential 2008 purchasing, so go get that.
No Age - 'Brain Burner' (download here of listen below)
Words and cheap picture: SS