MYTHS / Pompoir / Student Teacher Pat's Pub, Vancouver, BC January 9

MYTHS / Pompoir / Student Teacher Pat's Pub, Vancouver, BC January 9
MYTHS is the latest project from Lief Hall of the gone, but definitely not forgotten, Mutators, and the buzz surrounding them is palpable. Mutators were arguably the harshest, loudest and best of Vancouver's noise punk scene, and their departure left a definite void to be filled. But MYTHS take things in a completely different direction.

To kick off the night, first there was Student Teacher. Their sound is dirty, filthy, bluesy barroom rock, which was fine but made them a strange fit with the rest of the evening. Next up were Pompoir, a sexily named outfit that includes Nic Hughes of Shearing Pinx (speaking of Vancouver noise punk). The trio rotated between guitar, bass and drums, playing like a less noisy, more straight-ahead punk/grunge version of the Pinx, which was fine with the small but enthusiastic audience out getting a live taste of Pompoir's first full-length, Exploding Time.

After a lengthy set-up, MYTHS finally unleashed their much-anticipated attack upon the unsuspecting audience, and to say that it was polarizing would be a serious understatement - several audience members immediately rushed for the exits. But those smart enough to stick around witnessed something entirely original, with a performance that straddled dark electro and straight-up performance art, terrorizing the audience in way reminiscent of Mutators but from MYTHS' new warped pop angle.

Hall and band-mate Quinne Rodgers used their voices like percussion instruments, alternating between semi-conventional singing and bestial shrieks, letting crackling pre-programmed beats provide the backing track. It was hard to listen to at times, but challenging in the way that art should be, and few could deny MYTHS are onto something that's distinctly their own.