A Place to Bury Strangers / These Are Powers Biltmore Cabaret, Vancouver BC, October 20
Published Oct 21, 2009Complete with some fairly uninhibited acts, sheer racket was served up in spades at the Biltmore Cabaret. To do some warm-up, Brooklyn's These Are Powers showcased their trance-inducing jungle polyrhythms with a hedonistic flair. The three-piece seemed incapable of standing still; conventional stage presence mattered very little to this free-spirited bunch.
And if noise was the order of the day, A Place to Bury Strangers succeeded like few others in their genre can. Promoting Exploding Head, their sophomore full-length, the furious New York shoegazers seemed as intent on deconstructing their own sound as they were keen on building it back up.
Amidst their trademark wailing and reverb-heavy wall of sound, APTBS presented a dark aesthetic, immediately reminiscent of some of the moody, heavier acts that emerged out of the UK in the mid-80's. They let their gloomy yet persuasive tunes speak for themselves. Vocalist/guitarist Oliver Ackermann barely lifted his eyes from the ground, while drummer Jay Space maintained their searing sound with an all too precise backbeat.
A Place to Bury Strangers' live set is something of an explosion. It's penetrating, complete with tripped-out graphics painting the ceiling and seizure-inducing strobes. It makes sense how their hype has evolved, with APTBS rarely allowing for a dull moment as their deafening blasts of distortion led each song.