Live at Brudenell Social Club on Thursday, 15th March 2007
It is about 8.15 when the Worriedaboutsatan boys set up in front of the Brudenell stage. There is a small crowd of people gathered to watch Gav and Tom as they begin to create strange noises scattered with heavy cut up beats and slow swarming chords. The audience in the room can clearly be split into two categories at this point; the people who have had the Worriedaboutsatan experience before and sit transfixed as Tom expertly taps away on his synth and programmer. And then there are the people who clearly do not know what to expect of these two men, their guitars and Windows computer set up on the table. I fit into the first category. Worriedaboutsatan, tonight, really showed themselves to have mastered the craft they have been slaving away at for a while now. The beats are big and heavy with huge crunching guitars and sweeping delay-ridden melodies. Tom flails himself about the room as Gav sways slowly behind his computer. Absolutely immersed in their music, Worriedaboutsatan create massive folding landscapes laden with huge almost trance-like beats and epic grasping guitar melodies - an excellent start to the evening.
Second up are i concur who are a relatively new Leeds outfit, I believe. My first impression was certainly one of promise. The first song immediately reminded me of a darker, more laid back Placebo - the chiming chords ringing out with pounding drums supporting and a soft vocal style lifting above the music. The highlight of the set was the second tune played by i concur. The dark atmospheric chord progressions with disco beats reminded me instantly of Arcade Fire. There are certainly some excellent ideas present here and show an awful lot of promise but I felt that the songs never properly kicked off and kept expecting some sort of uplift or release that never really came. i concur are definitely a band to look out for in the near future. We can expect some wonderful tunes to come from this band in the months to come.
Samsa are no strangers to the Leeds music scene and still have an excellent reputation as one of our town's finest live acts. However, I've never really managed to latch onto whatever it is about Samsa people seem to love and I'm afraid once I again I was left wondering. Oli is without doubt a superb guitar player and an accomplished songwriter but I find it hard to get excited about this band. The best moments are when bassist, Harry Wood, turns to the organ and Samsa take it down a notch or two where the subtleties of Oli's voice can really be heard and the chord changes really shine. Personally, I think Samsa would have much better effect as an acoustic band and in fact I think I would become quite a fan. There is so much in their music I think might be lost in the 'rock' situation and we probably cannot quite hear exactly what Samsa want us to.
Finally, we reach the climax of the evening, as gear is shifted on and off the stage to make way for Stateless' ridiculous amount of equipment. Stateless release their debut album in June on K7 Records and have just returned from a jaunt around the country supporting DJ Shadow and so Stateless, understandably, have quite the buzz surrounding them at the moment. It is loud and beautiful. Stateless have a sound that cannot be quite pinned down. Singer, Chris James, really does look like he is pouring everything he has into his performance, as he grasps onto his microphone. Stunning piano licks and soaring strings pierce as the hip-hop beats of drummer, David Levin, and KidKanevil crash down around the audience as we are left transfixed. The sound of Stateless is so passionate and for once I do believe that the hype and buzz is completely justified. The best of luck to them.
Alt-americana / Post rock.