The very name conjures the wealth of insanity I kind of recall from the late 80’s/early 90’s and listening to John Peel and where I probably first heard our headliners. I’ve discovered that they took it from a list of imaginary bands from the 60’s so that just adds to the majesty of the multi layered madness.
They graced the legendary Pathological Records compilation along with the more extreme likes of Carcass, Napalm Death and Godflesh but apart from that and their marvellous “King of All Spaceheads” album this was my first opportunity to get my mind blown in person, what with them having had a slight chill-out from 1995 until a 2013 reformation.
So, back to the wonderful S & G, and people quickly gather upstairs for openers Cattle over from Leeds. Been some 3 years since I’ve seen them but was very looking forward to locking into the groove again, provided by the two drummers face to face up front of the stage, and the distorted bass powering along. The vocals are another effected layer and they now have full time sax into the mix, it has really added to make an intricate and hypnotic full sound, full of invention and great entertainment. It defies definition beyond experimental heavy beats and vibes, post-punk sludge, but I can’t wait to pick up their “Nature’s Champion” vinyl with its sexy screen print for repeated listens
Blown Out I hadn’t heard of before, not been going long but have been quite prolific in their output. I would suggest its quite easy to be prolific if you are producing relentless endless psych jam freak-outs, but they do it amazingly so I’m not complaining. Connected to the ultimately crushing space jammers Bong this three-piece launch into some random Whiplash-jazz intro before at least finding second gear and settling into riff loop. Massively overdriven bass from the barefoot exponent, his cheeks blown out savouring the fatness of the simple riff, the guitarist warbling round in some reverbed exploration that brings to mind the genius wall of noise of Spacemen 3. The drummer is almost transfixed in thousand-yard stare concentration on the motor-beat, I think we are treated to two or three epic songs that just fly by like light years. Ace
Even the ritual blessings delivered to us and the stage by one of the guitarists of Terminal Cheesecake brandishing bracelets of plastic animals just seems right in the world of the acid casualty riff fest of our headliners. The front man, a skinny Lee Dorrian lookalike, brings a big bag of tapes to share with the lads, which he loads up into a tape deck last seen attached to a ZX Spectrum. He manipulates them with the buttons, warping out the samples, interspersing his echoing chanted style vocals. This weaves and swirls into the rising, quickening riffs. It is heavy psychedelia supreme, a great concoction of repetitive riffs overlaid with effected leads and underpinned by a fantastically filthy undercurrent of Dirty Dave on the bass, along with further jazz intensity from the drummer. The whole thing is both suggesting of free form and yet completely brilliantly constructed shifts and structures, operating on and taking you to another level with them. I don’t know enough of their material to recognise it and it could be that there is an adlib element too, but checking out their latest “Dandelion Sauce for the Ancients” after they definitely have captured the same warped vibe. This is some of the most engrossing musical fun I’ve been transported by in ages, and it’s great that they seem to be sharing the experience on stage too. A giant inflatable ice-cream called Mr Wipey turns up. Don’t try to understand, go with the flow.