Live at Joseph's Well on Monday, 28th May 2001
I'd just like to say that most of this review IS personal opinion, as to start off with all the bands were superb musically. None of the 4 bands were "bad," and all of them worth seeing, but I hope no one gets offended by my (our) thoughts. Generally the "I" in this review is me, Whiskas, where as the quotes are from my compatriots. Also, the review is generally quite rambling, with initial thoughts on bands in one part, then others elsewhere. Anyway, enough explaining, the gig....
First on, INDIGO DUB, were "10 times better than The Music," although a comparison with said band is a bit unfair. "The Dub" were very reminiscent of the new-wave of indie bands coming through with synths and layered guitars, using the sounds, samples and beats fantastically. The groovy bass lines rocked, complimented really well by synth bass, and their stage presence, although maybe to be shown up by the later bands, was still nothing to be disappointed with. "Liked the bassist's boxing moves" was a comment I got on this respect! Despite all this I didn't think any one tune stood out, especially looking back, and definitely don't recall hearing THE song. Still I'd definitely go see them again, 1-0 Manchester.
Local (or not so) lads BRAZIL were up next, and the stage seemed a lot more spacious after the 6 piece Indigo Dub had left. I'll start off by saying I'm not sure what at all to make of Brazil, I like their music, but it doesn't DO anything for me, although this maybe has more to do with me then their music. Unlike Indigo Dub the music was a lot more focused and more song based, although I often thought they could have more songs (1 or 2?) where they "let rip." The songs were recognisable, al remembered 4 from a previous gig, and "Porn Star" and "Flat Line" definitely stuck in my mind. Their performance seemed to get better as it went along, culminating in the fantastic "Flat Line" which seemed to put together everything that the other songs missed. Their stage presence was great, although I have comments that they did get "very sweaty very soon." Make of this what you will. There was great variety in the music, going from "thrashing" bits to "good moaning bits." Something I noticed though which summed up their performance was the lack of variance of the bass lines, fairly simple following the chords. While I'm not saying this in particular is what let them down, it highlighted some of the things that I felt it did. They would maybe have benefited from some of the "groove" the other bands possessed. Al said "better than The Music," Brazil scored comfortably early on, and bagged a late one at the death, to put Leeds up 2-1.
Now, NYLON PYLON - "Some funky Dr Who sounds!" was a vague quote, but "not really like anything I've heard before" I thought was perfect. Yes, you can tell you've heard bits of the music before, but altogether it was unique. Personally I felt although the ideas they came up with were excellent, the songs didn't really progress from there, but considering the calibre of the songs, I think this was purposeful. The exceptions were the last song "Music:Noise" and a mid-set rock-out which I though relieved the gig perfectly. The ability of the band to swap instruments was excellent, with the bass and guitar player liberally swapping, and plenty of drum riser rock action made them fun to watch. Generally I'd say Nylon Pylon made chilling music, aided with samples, that has the ability to sound fantastic. Basically I got the idea that unlike Indigo Dub with the layering of synths and effect driven guitars, they created the same effect with a much more understated (lo-fi) way of doing it, even though initially the reminded me off Underworld. Again, I'd love to see them again, just to make my mind up exactly. Al and I agreed that they were "better than The Music" and they strolled comfortably onward with a hat trick to put Manchester back in the game at 4-2.
Finally were PARISMAN, and I'll take this all from Heidi's notes: "A good mix of everything. All the best bits of the other bands blended together. Liked the variation of instruments for different songs, with some more funky Dr Who type synth sounds." Here's some more quotes; "The best unsigned band around" "How are this band THIS good?", I hope you get the idea. For me, I completely agreed and more. They had the layered rock sounds of Indigo Dub, the rock action of Brazil and the chilled grooves of Nylon Pylon, and above this the band all the songs all sounded as if they came from the same stable, despite having massive variation between song and during songs. I mean there were songs where you got all featured styles in one, and it passed over you. Where the other bands alternated instrumentation slightly, Parisman went from 3 vocals, 2 guitars, bass, synth, drums, to 3 synths and vocals, with little audible difference. i.e. They still rocked like Mofo's with no guitars.
There is little more I think I can say about Parisman and the gig, except to say, they are equal to ANY other band I have ever seen, and hopefully one of these bands will "take off". Although all excellent, it was a comment we got from watching Indigo Dub, that although great, we didn't know how they would appeal to record company's etc. I think if one such band of this style takes off, then the futures bright for all of them, and by tonight's standards and rumours I've heard about the bands, it won't be long.
And the score?? Well Parisman got a hat-trick quickly to put Leeds back in control, added to that the off-side from Manchester with all their fans going home early (not their fault - the gig ran late, but that's football), and the consistency of Parisman bagging a SECOND hat-trick, makes the score at the final whistle 8-3. Although the game only ran away towards the end, honest.