Acid Mothers Temple & the Melting Paraiso U.F.O played one of the most extraordinary and best gigs I have ever attended last year at the old Owl, with BK & Dad, and the much-missed Wreck-Age. They had a lot to live up to but totally succeeded in doing that with another magnificent set at the new Owl Sanctuary.
To open the evening we had an immense set from well-named Soyuz Rats. I saw one of their early gigs at The Plasterers in May and have seen both members in other previous ventures both of which I enjoyed a lot but this was the real deal and they’ve already come a long way since that Plasterers gig. They are powerful and loud for a two piece, I especially enjoyed the more complex songs best, the penultimate one of the set especially was absolutely superb. They fill the room and hold everyone’s attention throughout and use some good samples. Very impressive, they made me want to see them again soon in a venue like this which tells you all you need to know.
What can I say about BK&Dad that I have not said dozens of times before? They totally blew the roof off here, another duo who have huge power … they could recreate the sound of metal fatigue in deep space. Pip is one of the most visual drummers I have seen, fascinating to watch, like a dervish, whilst Leo, all hair does just extraordinary things with a single guitar. Brilliant.
One has to see several of Acid Mothers Temple gigs to fully appreciate just how much they change the arrangements making every gig they play truly unique. With a new bassist they still sounded incredibly tight and every member of the band was compelling to watch, the incredibly precise “Animal” of a drummer, a true wizard on sequencer and Thermin, plus a guitarist in drag and flashing neon specs! They do look just like wizards and magicians channelling and I do believe they are. They even surprised us with a cover of Black Sabbath’s Wizard. Pink Lady Lemonade was stunning as were a number of other songs I am less familiar with. As with the previous gig I lost all sense of time but when they finally walked off stage I knew I had witnessed something incredible and special and felt somehow cleansed. They were spacey, psychey and with some great krautrock vibes but also quite playful. The Thermin moments were other-worldly but then the whole experience was rather like that.
A friend of mine said she had seen them several times before though never in Norwich and that this was the best one of all. I knew I had spent the evening in the presence of magic and came away with a t-shirt and a beautiful mauve vinyl album hoping to preserve and carry back a little of this magic. Outside, the band – one still in drag, another in an Owl t-shirt – were loading up their van and it all looked a very precise operation with no margin for error. When they’d succeeded in the Rubik cube arrangement of their gear they gave themselves a charming round of applause, waved and said goodbye and were off. I fully expected to see stardust in the trail of the van. A sold-out gig in Norwich on a Sunday night saw something amazing. Absolute magic.
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