What we couldn’t handle was the end, where the previously polite and sedate chair donned a rubber face mask: one which was a queasy mix of the features of Silvio Berlusconi and 70’s snooker ace Ray Reardon.
And despite having a whole set of boss songs with incredibly catchy hooks to proffer, the one thing that smacks you right between the eyes is the intense quality of their live sound. It’s all about the sound.
Their last two tracks of the night are complete burn outs; the two guitarists standing stock still facing of each other, trying to become entwined by the power of feedback alone. They are, to put it mildly, fucking good.
Maybe that’s all they needed, a chance to play a few big stages with a good, professional sound mix and some proper amplification, as the sound they made in the Melkweg’s Oude Zaal was little short of revelatory.
Wooden Constructions are great and if you don’t get a grip on that concept, then the doors to the garden centres up and down this land are waiting for you, beckoning to you, happy to put a warm, schmaltzy, all-enveloping arm round you and propel you round their sensory death-spaces.
At one point Marc went out for a fag mid song, walking back in past some bemused members of the crowd who’d obviously be happier hanging out at Hema. And almost trying to outdo himself, Marc finishes things off in true entertainer’s style by jumping into the drumkit.
...though the Friday nights are now a regular fixture, the new (and frankly shambolic) press operation from SUB’s new set of bookers means I never know what’s on…
I'm also going to try and resist questioning exactly what the hell Palma Violets, NME wank-band of the week, are doing on this bill: we've seen them before and they're about as psychedelic as tile grout.
Out there on stage it’s hot, repressively so… and given that I can only see Abi’s arm and a lot of silver foil from the fruit basket come helmet on my head, there’s not a lot I can do apart from attempting my Larry Grayson “skip” dance.
Dekka held court magnificently, a huge presence, like the carved figurehead on the prow of some ship, with the two girl singers flanking him, like harpies giving him hell as he negotiated his way through a set that spat out anger and frustration at every turn.
I have to say from the off that this isn’t really a review of Incubate: this is a review of what happened at a venue, Café Extase, with the odd bit thrown in from elsewhere... Incendiary had teamed up with Louder than War and Smikkelbaard to curate our own conceit over the final weekend: “Cultural Cringe”
Stephen Watt’s pilgrimage to Manchester continues, and, although he almost arrives at the gig, the Stone Roses aren’t due on for five hours. What follows is simply more navel-gazing from a self-absorbed, middle-aged man, who refuses to let go of the past. Poor chap, he just wants to be adored. But, then, don’t we all?
There’s a quiet assurance in all that T.A.G.C. does that makes things sound easy, their slabs of shifting white noise, questioning textures and subtle rhythms create a feeling that you’d heard this sound before, and were just waiting to be reminded of it.
After this a stroll through the Vondelpark, (where naked film students jumped into the park’s pond with gleeful abandon) pondering on a strange night, but in parts a very good one.
More worryingly who’s next in line for the Beau Monde to gush over, Colonel Abrahams? The Reynolds Sisters?
I’m paraphrasing here but one line the girl bawled out, “My boyfriend likes me from behind/and you know I don’t mind” actually got the crowd hollering and bouncing along, it was extraordinary.
“A guy crowdsurfs through a sea of balloons with a George Michael mask. This is Diagrams, this shouldn’t be happening. They’re going bananas and it seems Mr Michael impersonator isn’t ever going to come down”.
Beal screamed out his torch songs, with a taste for in yer face drama, he indulged in a whole variety of props and poses; covering up in a cape, waving the mic stand like a Claymore, taking off his belt and whipping the floor like a sex crazed fetishist…
The glowering tower block near Leiden station, a veritable blot on the landscape for the authorities was transformed – for one evening only - into an impromptu centre for all things Carnival and Saturnine.
Everything Schellinx does is playful to a degree, the heavy stuff is there of course, but that’s down to you to dig deep. He is adept at setting up preposterous ideas and pulling them off...