Dinosaur Pile-Up

posted 27 May 2009, 03:44 by The Editor

Dinosaur Pile-Up + Japanese Voyeurs + The Federals + Darker Shades

Fibbers, York - 8th June 2009

I’m running late as usual, so I only catch a couple of tunes from Darker Shades. They seem to be doing a sort of dance-punk thing of the sort you might hear from the likes of We Are Scientists or Foals when I arrive. I’m not sure they really manage to pull it off, but as I’ve missed most of the set I’ll reserve judgement.

I’ve seen The Federals before, down at the City Screen basement a year or so ago with someone or other. At the time I wasn’t paying much attention to them, but I do remember them playing garage rock. Tonight, they’re still playing garage rock, but this time I’m paying more attention. Guitarist/singer Jim makes some proper fuzzy noise and the rhythm section is doing a sterling job. Put it all together and you’ve got a loud, fuzzy, garage racket. Good stuff.

I’m old enough to remember the whole grunge thing kicking off when I was a young lad with a full head of hair back in the early nineties. It’s a sobering thought to me that someone born back in 1991 when Nevermind was released, is now able to legally buy booze and go to a gig. Anyway, The Japanese Voyeurs are up next and they sound like they could have just arrived from nineties Seattle. They’re not, they’re from London way as it turns out. The most obvious thing about them is blonde front woman/girl Romily - we know she’s called Romily as it’s helpfully written on the headstock of her guitar. Romily‘s vocals have a little-girl quality to them that‘s hard to ignore, especially when she gets screaming which she does quite often. In fact she reminds me of a higher-pitched Courtney Love. The rest of the band consists of four blokes, one of whom plays that most grunge of instruments, keyboards. Sarcasm aside, The Japanese Voyeurs do have some good polished tunes, which seems to go down well with the kids to whom this probably sounds new and exciting.

pre-gig research for Dinosaur Pile-Up has led me to believe I’ll be in for some fuzzy guitar pop with shades of Weezer and Pavement. A quick look at the pointy guitar on stage makes me think I might be in for something a bit more hardcore though and as the Pile-Up tear through their set I‘m not wrong. So, there’s no woo-hoos, catchy choruses or smart-arsed slacker lyrics from this Leeds three piece, but there‘s plenty of loud rock and roll. From set-opener “Traynor” they crank up the volume and let loose with the riffs and don‘t stop till it‘s home time. There’s certainly that nineties grunge sound to a lot of the tunes with the loud-quiet-loud routine and I wouldn‘t say it was groundbreaking stuff, but on a Monday night in York I’m not going to complain too much and I leave feeling sufficiently rocked. 


Nick Harmer