Friday, 5 October 2012

The Raveonettes with Melody's Echo Chamber: Live at The Phoenix

I have this lingering cough that I contracted a couple of weeks ago which I can't seem to shake. That was not going to keep me away from The Raveonettes show on Tuesday. I have seen the band twice before and I know they are too good to pass up. Even better, the much hyped band Melody's Echo Chamber, who the Aural Report helped introduce to the world, were the opening band.

Melody's Echo Chamber is a band, led by French pop artist Melody Prochet, that play a brand of dream pop that is is underscored with psychedelia. They recently released their self titled debut album that was produced by Kevin Parker of Tame Impala. The band's set was a swooning collection of songs from their debut album that had the lithe Prochet dancing in a hippie trance with her hair covering her face everytime there was a guitar or synth solo. The highlight of the band's performance is when they played the track Crystallised, which is a song that starts out dreamy, like most of the other songs on the album, but ends with a total crush of electro synths and psychedelic guitars.

The Raveonettes took the stage to a venue that was only three quarters full and the audience was enthusiastically quiet (No oxymoron). That changed when the group launched into the Lust, Lust, Lust track Hallucinations and it's classic jangle guitar sound.You know that a concert is going to be a total array of different guitar sounds when the fourth member of the band is the technician. The Raveonettes' technician was actually standing on the stage ensuring Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo had the right axes to wield for the rest of the night. The diversity of the Raveonettes music is quite vivid and is a sound that features surf guitar, 60's pop, garage, dream pop, psychedelia and most notably an aural assault of deafening shoegaze.

The band played a a set that was infused heavily with songs from their recent release Observator, their debut record Whip It On, and their 2007 album Lust, Lust, Lust. They only played three songs that were not from those albums. It was nice to hear the old Whip it On garage-gaze tracks Bowels of the Beast, Chains and the wrecking ball of a song Attack of The Ghost Riders which had Rose Wagner launching into a screeching guitar squalor after each musical directive "It Goes Something Like This....."

Finally, as every fan of the band knows, it wouldn't be a Raveonettes show with out their blistering 2008 hit Aly, Walk With Me. The band didn't disappoint, as they ended the pre encore set with the shoegaze classic.  The performace of this song is a "must see" for any shoegaze fan as it features Rose Sun and Foo at their Mary Chain inspired best. With a plodding drum beat and Foo's musical chants the song explodes into a wall of feedback, that is backlit with flittering strobes, and has Rose Wagner and Foo converge into a battle of furious guitars that is played for maximum volume. See example below.

Set List:
She Owns the Street
Dead Sound
Curse the Night
The Enemy
Gone Forever
Young and Cold
Attack of the Ghost Riders
Bowels of the Beast
Aly, Walk With Me

Sinking With the Sun
Cops on Our Tail

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