Live at Brudenell Social Club on Thursday, 20th January 2005
If there was one thing that fatally crippled the "nu-Brit-indie" uprising of last year, it was the lack of general excitement and, more to the point, characters about the whole thing. And by characters, we're not talking about moronic "indie chav" thugs like Oasis and their legions of imitators or spoilt little public schoolboys playing at smackheads a la the Libertines, Razorlight and countless others. We're talking about the genuine maverick showmanship that spawned the great rock 'n' roll stars of our time like Bon Scott, David Lee Roth and Ginger Wildheart.
More on that later. First, openers Blood Sundae are an all-goth girl quartet who clearly have their eyes set on being "Siamese Dream" era Smashing Pumpkins. I've heard worse bands on the local circuit than this lot but their set could really do with easing off the ponderousness and histrionics a bit and injecting some urgency. Once they do that, I'm sure they'll go far.
Better are second band Nerve Engine who take the tightness of "Even Flow" era Pearl Jam and the boneshaking riffs of primetime Helmet and combine them to make something genuinely impressive. With the current backlash against emo they may have timed their entrance into rock's arena a bit badly but lumping them in with the dull likes of thisGirl and Yourcodenameis:milo would be an injustice - this lot are definitely one of the better bands of their kind.
Now then, back to what I was saying earlier. If you're looking for some genuine characters in your rock 'n' roll, you could do a lot worse than start with AntiProduct who seem to have got a whole band's worth of the buggers. Drummer Simon lashes his kit like an octopus on stimulants, bassist Mariana and keyboardist Milena coolly stand and smoulder the way all great rock vixens should and guitarist Clare prowls the stage like an axe-wielding giraffe on ice skates, effortlessly throwing the sort of guitar shapes that only someone with a genuine love of everything that's great and life-affirming about rock 'n' roll could. And then at the front, lead singer Alex (who looks like the bastard offspring of Gene Simmons and Krusty the Clown) is a showman par excellence, stalking the crowd and whirling them up into a frenzy with his audience-baiting antics. Added to that is the fact that AntiProduct, far from what you may think, have the tunes to back up the presence - just listen to the frenetic likes of "The Rules We Rock 'n' Roll By", "Goin' Where The Action Is" and the frankly superb "Bungee Jumping People Die" for proof.
They even turn their none-more-chaotic hand to covering the Ramones' "Blitzkrieg Bop" and the Beach Boys' "Good Vibrations" and it's with the latter that the telling moment of tonight's set comes when Alex announces "Y'see, I know when some of you guys go home you're gonna go back to listening to Tool and the Deftones but right now, you're listening to a heavy metal cover of a Beach Boys song and, admit it, you're fuckin' loving it!!" That statement pretty much sums up AntiProduct in a sentence - burn your copy of the NME's "Who's Cool In Rock 'n' Roll Guide", admit to yourself that yeah, Guns 'n' Roses were actually a much better band than losers like Kasabian will ever be, leave your brain at the door and bloody well enjoy yourself. And there's no higher recommendation than that.
"like Sevendust battling it out with deftones and Metallica" - The Machine
All girl dark melodic/doom metal