Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Fuck Buttons, Zun Zun Egui & Theo. Cellar. Oxford. 19th September 2009.

Seems like it's been a while since I wrote about a gig on here. I'm not sure if that's because I go to less gigs now, or because I am just less inclined to write about them now. Either way, it feels like it's been a while, and I went to one Hell of a gig on Saturday, so I'm going to gush about it for a little while on here. The gig in question was Fuck Buttons with support from Zun Zun Egui and Theo, at The Cellar in Oxford.

Now, I a) missed at least half of Theo's set and b) have written about Theo at least twice on this blog before, so I'll keep it brief. Theo is ace. His guitar loops and live drums method (yes he does both, building up the loops then percussing along) just gets better and better every time he does it. The man behind Theo is someone who is really mastering his craft, and it is a joy to see and hear.

Zun Zun Egui are a band who I read a very short review of in a magazine a while back. Can't remember which one. It made them sound interesting though, so I was looking forward to this. They started of by one of the members telling a very bad Fuck Buttons related joke. Oh dear. In my mind suddenly flashed exactly how this was going to go. A band of albeit probably talented people making some sort of bog standard indie balls that they believed in so earnestly, thinking they're the dogs bollocks but in fact being very far from it. My patience would not last long with this lot, especially as they were dressed as hippies. Thankfully however within about thirty seconds my preconceptions were totally molested into submission as it became very quickly apparent that this band are actually really fucking good. They made an absolutely joyous psychedelic noise rock which put me in mind of 'Visioncreationnewsun' era Boredoms, but a slightly more UK indie take on it. Only slightly mind, complementing rather than overtaking. Waves of sound, indecipherable yelped lyrics and beats you could properly get your head nodding to. Music you can lose yourself in. It was fan-bloody-tastic and I'm gutted that I forgot buy a cd off them. I will definitely be keeping my eyes and ears out for this lot.

Ah, Fuck Buttons. The duo that thought to themselves "The noise scene's getting a bit dull and navel-gazey. Let's stick some fucking beats on that shit!", and became arguably one of the greatest and most original bands of the zero decade. (That is of course over-simplifying their methods and their output, but it's the best way I can think of to convey their music to anyone who hasn't heard them before.) Now, 'Street Horrrsing' was a fucking great album, but it was still nothing to how they are live. Live, they are a band who you simply cannot ignore. They crank it up and force their sounds under your skin into the very core of your being, compelling you into a full body reaction. It is exciting. It is urgent. It is life affirming. It is total and utter euphoria.

Well, it is to me anyway.

It was far too long since I last saw Fuck Buttons. I was very excited, but at the same time nervous. See, Fuck Buttons would be playing a lot of new material seeing as how their new album 'Tarot Sport' is out next month and all, and there's always that slight worry in the back of your mind when you see a band you love playing new material. That nagging "What if it's not as good? Or worse, what if it's rubbish?!" that plays on your mind until you see what they have to offer.
Well, any doubt was vanquished immediately and the new material is just as full on sensory euphoria experience as their existing material. Maybe even more so!
There really isn't much I can say about their set that won't fall into either total pretentiousness or out and out gushing, but what I will say is that it was just phenomenal. A set fresh with life and showing an evolution of a band with a sound that in any other hands might have easily become stale and dull. I cannot fucking wait to hear the album. It inevitably won't be as good as they are live, but if it's even half as good, it will be an absolute treasure.

In summary then; An absolutely phenomenal gig. One of those nights that makes you really fucking happy to be alive.

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