Photo: Joe Singh
Goodness me, we’re only a short number of days away from the incredible alternative and contemporary music celebration that is ArcTanGent. This time next week we’ll (hopefully) be basking in the late summer sun getting our collective minds blown by some of the best experimental music and artists available. With that in mind, here’s part two of our top 10 bands to see at the festival next week.
Pijn & Conjuer: Curse These Metal Hands!
If you’re even remotely interested and involved with the
heavier side of the alternative UK scene, it’s highly likely you’re familiar with both Pijn and Conjuer. Both bands have made colossal waves within their respective scene this year, with Conjuer releasing their devastating full length debut Mire earlier this year and Pijn recently announcing their debut full length Loss, which will be dropping later in October. However, both bands will be teaming up for what is abound to be a tag team duo of monstrously heavy density next weekend, with the acts performing a one off collaborative set. Details of what will follow are scarce, but we’ve been promised something in the vein of Pink Floyd and we fully expect something with enough weight and force to force the sun into supernova. At the end of the day though, we’ll happily endorse anything that references Peep Show. PS - Since the project have no recorded material, here's a lovely video of the guys bumming around Europe.
Whilst the revival of intricate emo the first half of the
decade saw may be cresting and coming into the surf, there’s still a plethora of acts remaining true whilst reigniting the original sound. Hailing from Canada’s Montreal, Gulfer have been on the forefront of such a revival since the release of their debut full length What Gives in 2015. Still riding upon the wave of success that 2018’s Dog Bless bought, Gulfer are an act that revel in the excitement and anxieties of youth, injecting a supple amount of adolescent energy and self-analyzing introspect into a genre often stereotypically perceived as stoic and aloof in nature. Expect beer buzzed group harmonies, backflipping and twinkling riffs and an emotional range spanning from youthful frustration to playful energy. Accessible and engaging for everyone interested in such a sound, Gulfer are undeniably set to present and play host to a good time whilst still projecting the sporadic and formulated convulses we all love.
Mouse On The Keys
Standing amongst a line-up dominated by guitar driven
innovativeness, Tokyo’s Mouse On The Keys offer a sound and live set that’s thoroughly unique yet still similar in nature. A thoroughly fresh adventure into jazz and neo-classical post-rock, the main driving force behind the group’s work is intense and spiraling piano leads backed by tight metropolitan percussion. The end result is an output and live sound that’s a true unbiased fusion of jazz and post-rock, with instruments from unassuming genres tamed and subjugated into creating that art that’s simply unexpected and beautiful. Thrilling, ambitious and imaginatively idiosyncratic, Mouse On The Keys are set to present a show that showcases just how extraordinary the jazz and post-rock genres can be when approached from angles that have never been considered. Even with ArcTanGent boasting a line-up packed with originality, you’re going to be hard-pressed to find something that matches this brilliant Japanese act.
Riding on the back of their recently released and quite
frankly mesmerizing 2018 release We All Know, Talons bring forth the emotional heft, sprawling soundscapes and diverse musical palate that the global post-rock scene is renowned for. With a focus on painting hazy and borderline post-apocalyptic landscapes by utilizing dual violin instrumentation and all manner of other creative tools, Talons aren’t ones to shy away from foreign and less traveled genres. Expect hues of overcasting Indian classical, subtle blues ambiance and glacial shoegaze within their set, intensifying and animating such desolated yet beautiful landscapes conjured. Whilst most post-rock acts pursue a range of elements within their work, Talons feel and sound like a masterful controlling of primal and natural sonic winds, taming feral sounds from across the world in order to project narratives from the depths of the imagination. If you enjoy you’re post-rock multi-textured and deeply dynamic, Talons are not an act to be missed.
Whilst some acts feel the need to pump out mundane
material on a quick basis, Tangled Hair pursue a different approach, taking the time required to create art that truly represents their homegrown sound and ethos. After five years in construction, the group released their debut We Do What We Can earlier this year; an album that truly embodies the phrase ‘good things come to those who wait’. Dexterous and glistering with charm and personality, Tangled Hair present spasmodic rhythms marred with homegrown and affectionate DIY indie, presenting a sound that would be a crime to attempt to pigeonhole. Like the moniker implies, it’s a young, charming and restless take on convoluted indie, with enough rhythmic hooks to snare you deep into the world of this often under appreciated act.