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We Insist!, Dÿse, A Whisper In The Noise, Beehoover, End Of Level Boss - Blisstrain: The Exile On Mainstream Roadshow
The Exile On Mainstream Records label has more than once surprised me with their experimental rock bands, so when I heard that five of them would be teaming up for a European trek I really wanted to go and check it out. The bands performing were Beehoover, Dÿse, End Of Level Boss, A Whisper In The Noise and We Insist!. Cool thing is that there was no official running order, so the bands were all playing a different slot every evening, and join each other on stage for some collective rampage. Let’s be amazed!
The band to open this night was End Of Level Boss, a heavy rock foursome from the UK. I have to say that this was the least impressing band of the evening (with other words, the band I witnessed when I was still mildly sober). The addition of a new drummer surely didn’t’ do them much good, because his performance was not at all impressing to me, there was no conviction in his drumming whatsoever. The rest of the band suffered tremendously under this, because without a hard hitting drummer it’s difficult to really rock out. Definitely not the best band of the evening for me.
Up next was Beehoover, who’s soundcheck lured me to the stage immediately. The band consisted of an awesome grooving and bashing drummer (contrary to the previous band) and a bald ‘n’ bearded bassist seated on a crutch. Both of them handled the vocals, although the lions share was in the bassists hands. The guy held a five string, with the lowest string missing. In the soundcheck he made such low and intenste distorted noise on his bass guitar, I really thought we were in for something good and heavy. Unfortunately he kepy his play mostly restricted to the high strings, so it still sounded like somewhat of a guitar rocking out. There were some good parts in the songs, but as the show progressed, I gradually lost interest. Too bad, because if they were to handle more heavy riffs I would be one of their biggest fans. Still, props to these guys, especially the drummer.
A Whisper In The Noise was the most gentile band of the evening. The band consisted of a drummer (who also played guitar), bassist, a violin player (who also handled backing vocals) and the brain behind the band; West Thordson who handles keyboards, guitars and vocals. The gentile and well thought through songs were a welcome alternative between all the noisy rock bands on the bill, and I quite enjoyed their laidback performance. Only I must admit that the band didn’t make such a lasting impression on me as their latest album Dry Land did. Slightly disappointing, yet very enjoyable.
The fourth band of the evening was the only one on the bill I didn’t know; Dÿse from Germany. The first song they played contained practically all the members of all the bands on this tour, with everyone playing either their own instrument or some kind of percussion, be it on a trash can or an actual cowbell or woodblock, even the label manager participated in this. After this song the band continued their set in their actual line-up; a guitarist and a drummer. I recognised them from the band Volt which I saw earlier this month with Patton and Zu, only this time the sound effect dude from Volt was the drummer in Dÿse. And damn, this duo rocked my ass six ways to Sunday! Heavy kick ass hardcore rock ‘n’ roll to the fucking core! I enjoyed every song of their set and I think I will soon try to get my hands on their album, because this rocks! The songs contained a certain sound that was typically them, which added some more dimension to the genre. Noise-rockers keep an eye out for them!
Headliners of the evening was the French collective We Insist!. I’ve seen the band once before, and I was impressed by their musical capabilities and their unique way of composing songs. The band's lead singer is the drummer and there are two sax players (one on soprano and tenor and one on alt and baritone) in the band, next to two guitarists and a bassist. Their songs are rock songs, but with such feel for rhythm and melody, you can tell these are schooled musicians. No mainstream hit songs here for sure. Tonight was also the last night for one of the sax players, so he got to do a killer solo. Jazz music eat your heart out! This is a band for the intellectual rock music lover, if you don’t know them go check them out asap. They insist!