When Gengahr returned with new single ‘Carrion’ last month, it showed a band evolving and reaching for darker territories. When the track closes the main set at the band’s comeback show at Omeara tonight, it’s already received like a classic.
Before that - and after an excellent, extremely promising opening set from Hello 2017 alumni Dama Scout - almost all of the band’s upcoming second album is given an airing, and points towards a brilliantly varied follow-up to 2015 debut ‘A Dream Outside’.
‘Mallory’ is the first new cut shared, coming after blazing opener ‘Heroine’. A slower, more considered cut than ‘Carrion’, it’s full to the brim with melody and John Victor’s hazy lead guitar line. Similarly to ‘Carrion’ though, it sees Felix Bushe’s vocals taking on a newfound twang in a lower register.
‘I’ll Be Waiting’ is another extremely exciting preview, falling closer to the relaxed sway of ‘A Dream Outside’, while ‘Burning Air’ is a gritty ode to ‘90s indie rock. There’s also plenty of reminders of what a brilliant debut ‘A Dream Outside’ was, with ‘Bathed In Light’ and ‘Fill My Gums With Blood’ still irresistible earworms, and probably the least likely songs you’ll see a sort-of-moshpit emerge to this year.
It’s ‘Carrion’ that really impresses though, even more urgent and relentless live, and already a focal point of the band’s set, less than a month after it was unleashed on the world.
‘She’s A Witch’ - which remains one of the best indie songs Britain has produced in the past five years - and ‘Embers’ close the set, and while it’s a rapturously received ending, the main takeaway from tonight is that there’s plenty, plenty more to come from Gengahr - by the sounds of it, they’ve got a hell of a second album in their back pocket.
Photos: Robin Pope / DIY