Raging Speedhorn / Brutal Deluxe

Derby Vic

July 11 2000

Warning : I feel in a sarcastic mood.

So, I missed the first band, Defenestation, who for some reason I thought were called Deforestation. But that would've been a dumb name. Still, given my recent apathy and the fact that I didn't really fancy coming to this gig anyway this evening, I was actually surprised I made it at all, let alone miss just one band.

Next were Brutal Deluxe, whose album I bought recently, but haven't really listened to much as it didn't exactly blow me away. They wander on with the "tribal" paintings that adorn their body, which look a bit stupid really, and proceed to knock out a thrash/nu-metal style racket. To be fair, things hit in more from the live performance than the album, but they're plagued by technical difficulties, the electronic drums are giving problems - more trouble than they're worth eh?, and the reliance on samples causes problems. There's times where music is emerging from the samples while nothing appears to being played. Hmmm. Not bad, but personally, there's still that certain something missing. They've received a lot of positive press, rave reviews for the album, but at the moment, I can't help feel there's an element of averageness about it all.

Raging Speedhorn. Hmmm. To be honest, I've not listened to them since reviewing the demo months back. Everyone seems to be falling overthemselves to praise them, whereas me, I kind of drift off, and it feels like whenever I dip back into consciousness, it sounds like the same thing is being played. The band take to the stage, the two vocalists stand stock still, almost eyeballing the crowd, if only it weren't for the fact that they'll be looking straight into the lights.

Then they start, the sludged out riffs, dual vocals that really do still sound the same to me, the crouch and shift, crouch and shift. After the first track, the Medulla Nocte t-shirt wearing vocalist takes to the crowd for the remainder of the set. They churn out the sludge. Actually, I woke up, something like the fourth track in features an absolutely monster riff. It's one of those that you're in a state of trance and wallop, you're knocked out of it. It's a good riff, a great riff. It belies that "you can dip in anywhere" point I made earlier, but also serves to emphasise it. It's the real standout. Actually, the music for the most part sounds interesting, though after half an hour or so my interest is wandering, I need more variety. It's just the vocals, I can't figure what they're saying, don't really want or need to know, but it just adds so much mundanity to everything, it turns it into one long struggle for me. I guess when it gets extreme, there's a very fine line between what you like, and what you think grates. After one song the medulla wearing intones "there's silence all of a sudden". Un, the band stopped playing - methinks that has something to do with it. It's hard to imagine a UK crowd whooping and hollering to a band of the style of the Speedhorn. He turns the light away from the band who proceed to therefore play lit only by the backlights, effectively turning them into barely visible silhouettes. Reliance purely on the music, which isn't a good move methinks. They work hard, the tour hard, they'll get a lot of good press. Me, selfish me, I still want more.

Hmm, that wasn't half as sarcastic as the review I had in my head as I drove home last night. Must've mellowed in my sleep.