O2 Academy Islington, London 8 July 2011
Two very different Japanese interpretations of the idea of rock’n’roll descended upon The Angel Islington.
Compare and contrast the constructions of rock’n’roll energy, of gtr-bs-dr dynamics between the leather-clad machismo of Guitar Wolf and Bo Ningen‘s more androgyne angle. Bo Ningen favour the Acid Mothers Hendrix approach, riffing and cavorting at an angle to the regular hard rock template at the junction where Flower Travellin’ Band, the Butthole Surfers and Keiji Haino intersect.
Guitar Wolf take on wholesale the template laid out by The Ramones of a hairy, shades-wearing confrontational power trio vigorously reinventing bubblegum pop and garage rock in a fast, harder and definitely louder version. They open bombastically, leaping from the drum riser and getting more uproarious from there on in.
Complete with pulling (apparently) random members of the
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Camp Basement, London 8 November 2010
This is Bo Ningen’s night, it’s their album launch and there’s quite a bit of a buzz going around about them at the moment and rightly so. The gig is sold out and still people are queuing in the vain hope of getting in to see the band.
The support slot is filled by Invasion who are promoting their album The Master Alchemist. The sound verges more on the doom and sludge territory with be-caped singer Chan Brown shrieking in torturous tones over the heavy slow guitar riffs that echo bands like Electric Wizard at times. A special mention has to be made about drummer Zel Kaute whose style is a cross between John Bonham and Keith Moon as she clattered around the kit with real power.
A wail of feedback fills the air
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If you’re thinking of buying one Japanese cross-dressing psych rock freakout album this year, I would suggest you shed out your hard earned cash to get this one.
The opening track “4 Seconds To Ascension” is a statement of intent. It’s fast and powerful and kicks you in the gut like High Rise playing Black Sabbath on speed and falling into a factory that makes Stooges bootlegs. “Yura Yura Kaeru” is a little more sedate with the guitars slightly lighter in the mix and pulled back, and the vocals sounding almost soulful. “Koroshitai Kimochi” is similar to the mix that was used for the EP of the same name; as there were only 200 vinyl copies made of the EP a lot of people will not have
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