Friday, December 15, 2006

Melvins, with Big Business, The Garage, Glasgow, Thursday 14th December 2006

You would think that with a drummer as good as Dale Crover, the Melvins wouldn't feel the need to add another. That they've done exactly that is evidence of what makes them such a special band - their desire and ability to take straight-up rock & roll and push it further than almost anyone else.

With their latest album, (A) Senile Animal, (The) Melvins have added bass and drums duo Big Business to their arsenal, expanding to a four-piece, twin drummer line up. On record the sound is huge enough, but it really cannot compare to the live assault they present. The power of the two drummers is incredible. For the most part playing in sync with each other, they are at times almost earth shattering and, at the very least, ear shattering, propelling King Buzzo's guitar and Sideshow Bob hair and the fuzzed-up bass of Big Business' Jared Warren tirelessly for over an hour of gloriously heavy rock, with riffs and hooks aplenty. Tonight Glasgow, you have been very much rocked!

Photos of this gig available here.

Big Business

Monday, December 11, 2006

Josephine Foster, with Zaimph and Tight Meat Duo, Downstairs at The Captain's Rest, Glasgow, Wednesday 6th December 2006

For the second time in a month David Keenan and Alex Neilson's Tight Meat Duo tear the small space Downstairs at The Captain's Rest apart with their short intense blasts of free jazz, creating a high-energy freedom of expression from the manic clattering and pummelling of drums and squonking of saxophone.

Marcia Bassett is a hugely prolific presence in the world of drone and noise, part of, among many other projects, Hototogisu and Double Leopards. Tonight, in her solo Zaimph guise, she plays a wonderful set of subtle guitar atmospherics. Constructed from layers of e-bow and delicately manipulated guitar, it is dark and brooding, like the sounds of lost souls wailing into the void.

Despite a series of excellent albums in various incarnations, Josephine Foster has remained very much on the underground of the so-called 'new weird America' movement. She is definitely a true free folk spirit. Her songs here are often delicate and beautiful, though she is joined tonight by an incredibly energetic and expressive electric guitarist, who almost steals the show with his freaked out psychedelic guitar work, before drifting back to leave just her fragile roughly-hewn wisps of folk song. She is still a minority taste perhaps, even in these Joanna Newsom-enraptured times, but it is the lucky few who are here on this rainy Wednesday night.

Photos of this gig available here.

Josephine Foster