GPT. HI. !!!


The Green Park Tavern, Bath.


Self described gloom-pop act She Makes War opens the show with Fender tones, occasional ukulele, low-key looping and matter-of-fact melodies. That would be a gloomy description for what is a spirited and heart-warming performance from Laura Kidd in her solo guise. The name connotes feminist defiance and productivity; and whilst the DIY approach to industry success is inspirational, the lo-fi approach to performance is an excellent platform for what is essentially the work of an accomplished contemporary songwriter. Work of this sort is essential to the survival of the industry, and songs of this calibre are essential too. Simple melodies sung beautifully over rich tones, such as in ‘In This Boat’ and ‘Exit Strategy’ are an excellent introduction.

Klad Hest, (literally ‘happy horse,’ misspelt in Swedish – for the purposes of internet memes – so in effect ‘hapi horz’ or some such ‘cheezburger’-ism) is a culturally on-the-ball, tongue-in-cheek Matt Loveridge laptop party, of chip-tune highs and no-mercy, bass heaven lows. Energetic, would capably describe both ‘Klad’ and his meticulous programming; his stream of consciousness meets faux Tourette’s syndrome vocals are largely incomprehensible, but, like everything about this Freudian and highly entertaining performance, are impossible to ignore. Nyan cat makes a YouTube appearance, but Loveridge’s impulsive writhing, and smart orchestration steal the show.

And so we move to Thought Forms; a reference to Sanskrit mantras expressing the divine powers of music; Eastern mysticism, which conjures up thoughts of enlightenment through uplifting, droning and meditative sound, which is exactly what this noise-rock trio achieve. In plain English terms this is related to a more abstract notion, descriptive even – like bubbles of thought, notes rise and drift on warm winds . . . Thought Forms can also be read as a statement: Thought forms, thought ‘simply’ forms; but where and how? Questions with no firm answers are sometimes best expressed through artistic mediums, Thought Forms delve deeper than most. The three minds of Deej Dhariwal, Guy Metcalfe, and Charlie Romijn mesh together; fusing schools, or forms, of musical thought; the contrast of hard and soft a lesson in understanding one’s instrument, its history, its desire to be held softly and yet still be heard. As we move ever towards the post-earth, post-death, achingly, yes achingly, empty future we need music that will heighten perception and thus slow down time.

(The) Hysterical Injury is the kind of feminist reference to Freudian psychoanalysis that is more of a joke on Freud, rather than a joke of his own. Its meaning may change over time, lessening the impact, whereas the songs and performances go from strength to strength; tonight feels like a pinnacle in the band’s journey, an emotional culmination, a climactic victory salute, a battle won. ‘Visions of Trees’ is a dream that you would choose not to wake from. To live inside a song like ‘Bitch’s Balls’ would be to live in a future that is not afraid; a golden-age of sexual and gender equality. Annie Gardiner channels Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Kim Gordon alike on her way to cementing her superlative entry in a gallery event that has dazzled at every turn. Tom Gardiner was born to entertain, the more he loves what he does the more he is loved in return. Dead Wolf Situation might evoke bleak imagery – and some of its content may be stark – but will hopefully be canonised in a future that recognises what may be a turning point for the industry. Tonight’s showcase would be canonised in any hardened gig-goers book.