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'Fibbers, York, 22nd October 2013'   

-  Genre: 'Rock'

Our Rating:
There’s a reason I like to get down for early doors, but local supports PACIFIC DRIVE aren’t it. A shit mess of treble and a nasty mix only half-hide a hundred emo-rock sins, but their mates seem to like it. Then magic happens when BIRD take flight. The layered, textured interplay of synth washes, fx-soaked guitar and sturdy percussion provide a rich backdrop for soaring female vocals. Folktronica meets featherlight pop with a brooding, ethereal edge during a set that’s meticulously presented and performed: beautiful, beautiful music.

The music industry likes its bands to be young and photogenic, and to have a focal point. Consisting of three Bunnymen past and present, instrumentalists POLTERGEIST are clearly aware that they’re a trio of middle-aged blokes who aren’t much to look at and tackle the issue head-on. They put on a hell of a visual display, comprising segments of old films, flickering lights and who knows what. It’s all perfectly sequenced, and however random and obscure the images, they always compliment the sound they conjure. Wearing a uniform of white pack-a-macs, they practically disappear, like flickering spectres, into the ever-shifting backdrop: consequently, the music really does do the talking.

With Les Pattinson’s crisp, clear bass sound strolling around metronomic percussion courtesy of current Bunnymen drummer Nick Kilroe, Will Sergeant has infinite space in which to embark on divergent guitar explorations. Layered up with effects, he conjures a broad array of vibes, with heavily psychedelic and even proggy leanings, with the occasional dip into goth-tinged new wave territory. And if anyone has a right to do so, it’s Will Sergeant. Just when a piece threatens to meander off the page, they bring it back in with a scorching lead motif or a rocking riff – and if you’ve heard the album, you’d know that’s exactly how it’s supposed to be. The guitars shimmer and soar, blister and burn, at times not even sounding like a guitar.

There’s no heroics, though, and no posturing, meaning that neither the performance, or the music itself comes across as being indulgent. Instead, while the three of them lock into some lengthy, spiralling grooves, the audience can immerse themselves in the holistic multisensory experience. They don’t break the spell by trooping off stage and then coming back for one more. With no mics on stage, there’s no thank you or good night, and when the set ends, it’s done and they disappear. Magic.
  author: Christopher Nosnibor

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POLTERGEIST/ BIRD - Fibbers, York, 22nd October 2013
POLTERGEIST/ BIRD - Fibbers, York, 22nd October 2013