Blackrock / Khang

Derby Vic

May 18 2000

I think I can safely say that I've never seen this number of people at the Vic before!

I've seen Khang a couple of times before I think and they've not really done it for me. Not tonight, tonight it started to click. The songs begin to make sense, and there are songs there. Highlight is Devil's Child, not just for the song, but for the devil signs being thrown out like confetti from the stage. Those that couldn't make it in tonight are sympathised with, being forced to stay at home instead and watch the TV, they must be feeling gutted. The vocalist, I dunno, tonight he made me think of wassisface from Terrorvision, at least in his mannerisms. The vocals bear no resemblance of course. There's a good natured taunt to those that have made it over from Nottingham, referring of course to Bradford and Derby playing premiership footie next season, and the music is groovy, grindy without getting lost. At this rate, I want to hear the demos. Hint.

But the 'rock. What can you say? They rock. And then some. They groove, they swagger. Standing on the Shoulders of Giants may share a similar title to an Oasis song, but there the similarity ends. Oasis CLAIM they write great songs. Blackrock DO write great songs, there's the difference. The vocals, man, they help it so much, so much soul and grit, wassisface from the Black Crowes is increasingly brought to mind, for the soul. Downer, Herulaneum which is just massive, massive I tell you. Huge towering things. It's augmented by a display of head swing hair swaying dancing in the crowd the likes of which I've not seen in well, I really can't remember. A long time. There's a short pause as Sean decides to personally thank everyone, walking round shaking hands, and the announcment that the album will be out in 2001 on Man's Ruin, and so then even more people will be able to share in the beauty that is the Blackrock experience. Somehow they manage to save the best till last, what is described as an unreleased song, they call it Bell Bottom Strobe. Awesome doesn't even begin to describe it. The middle section is a slow, soulful break which truly sends shivers down the spine. Many a lauded band has tried to do something like this, and just gotten nowhere near the quality. Someone will turn round now and tell me it's a cover! There's many bands playing this, but where others sometimes rely on a dirge, a slow doomy grind, over distort things, or tune down waaaay too much, Blackrock concentrate on groove, classic riffs, great vocals, and most importantly of all, truly great songs. When you've got that, you don't need to rely on anything else. The music is enough to carry everything. Tonight they confirm once more what I already knew, Blackrock are simply the best band of this genre in Europe at least.