Live Review: Get Your Gun + Sex Swing + Nicotine Nerves – Radar – 23.11.2017
Photo via Facebook by Hasan Jensen / Homage Photography
Thursday’s show felt like a family gathering. A family of a certain type, of individuals looking somewhat alike, carrying a certain careless yet thought out style of appearance, gentle rock’n’roll-grunge-slightly retro ease, yet keeping it chill and relaxed. And at the same time one couldn’t put one label that would define exactly the kind of style, taste or scene these people might belong to. Why am I discussing this? The reason is simple: I think a lot can be said about musicians based on their listeners. And, as it is typical for shows at Radar – which are seemingly targeted at different kinds of tight and loyal families of different genres – Thursday’s night was once again very well arranged for those interested in a certain type of instrumental music, a night that felt fresh and youthful, and simultaneously carried away back in time when the guitars were loud, coats were long and worn in, shoes were tight, jean jackets were wide, shirts were flannel and the hair looked messy in a cool way.
The evening was opened by garage rock duo from Aarhus, Nicotine Nerves. It was my first time seeing the young band, so their gig at Radar was a nice introduction to their neurotic approach to simple, energy-driven and playfully sentimental as well as nihilist-coated mixture of garage, punk, and grunge, balanced well enough to deliver an effortlessly professional and clean performance. Which says a lot about the young band’s potential, not to mention the fact that a duo always has to go an extra mile in guitar music in order not to sound too flat or primitive.
Sex Swing is a newly formed self-proclaimed noise rock outfit from London, UK. Yet, the (totally existing) genre descriptions that came to my mind Thursday were stoner blues, groovy alien psychedelic experimental sludge, a cousin of Ufomammut and (some say) Sunn O))) deported to one of the parallel universes and so on. Now, this is an act highly recommendable to experience live if possible. Sex Swing’s debut studio album from 2016 is absolutely worthy of attention. However, the noisy layers of distortion produced by digitally manipulating the live sound of guitars, drums vocals and saxophone deliver a way more impactful punch when perceived live. An inventive use of saxophone, making the instrument sound almost nothing as itself, is something that adds to the sonic experience of Sex Swing not less than the phantom-like vocals, gliding along the latter in the soundscapes of alien squeaks, ritualistic chants, disturbing screams and desperate cries. All of that being constantly drowned and surrounded by heavy riffs and monotonous percussive patterns, keeping the emotional outrageousness contained into a cage of inescapable distress.
The closing show of the night performed by a Danish rock outfit Get Your Gun took place after a succession of shows of the band’s European tour, giving the fans the taste of their new record Doubt Is My Rope Back To You. Which is, as noted by many and admitted by the band, is not as much energy-driven in comparison with the band’s previous work, instead focusing on refinement and development of the sonic space between the two corner aspects of Get Your Gun’s sound: the melancholic, flowy, yet somewhat unnerving ambient-induced soundscapes and a mirror-reflection of those, only significantly more intense, saturated with bitter emotion and rich instrumentals. All of that held in place by repetitive, folk-reminiscent, yet creative bass/percussion patterns, over-layered by Andreas Westmark’s melodic and mournful, at times – rough and deep singing voice.
Sentimental yet tough Danish warriors of back-to-something-ies blues rock psychedelia delivered a genuine and impactful performance, highlighting the best elements of their new recording mentioned above. After the show, I had a little chat with Andreas, which shed some light on how Get Your Gun came into being, as well as his refreshing take on music world. But that I will keep for the nearest future. For now, I highly suggest tuning in Doubt Is My Rope Back To You while reading the review by Sound Of Aarhus’ Bobby McBride here.
If you feel nostalgic about the idea of an alluring rock music era that might have never actually taken place, Get Your Gun will definitely take you there. Along with alien sludge powerhouses from the UK Sex Swing and a nostalgic, yet refreshing garage rock duo from Aarhus, Radar once again managed to create a magical night for the forward-thinking generation of guitar music lovers. (5.5/6)