After a triumphant start to the Dr. Martens #STANDFORSOMETHING Tour in association with DIY in Edinburgh, this week it’s Wales’ turn to get in on the action.
Landing in Cardiff, this evening’s show sees hometown boys Samoans take to the stage for the first round. Showcasing their impressive breadth of skills for controlling noise, they’re a massive sounding band; one who teeter on the edge of fragility and explosiveness with every few notes.
Next up, Mazes are effortlessly great. Their set is a melding pot of krautrock, scuzzy indie and post-punk which buries its way into the audience's brains. Their offerings feel blissful in their jaggedness, not least thanks to set closer 'Skulking' with its satisfying bassline and disruptive screeched vocals. Their set flies by and before the crowd knows it, it's time for our headliners.
The screen that covers the back of the stage flickers with the static of an on-standby television invaded by poltergeists. It moves quickly to images of marches, riots, black-and-white shots of carnage in the streets. Eagulls emerge against the stark imagery, silhouettes on the projection clips.
Their set follows as a mix of psychedelia-esque melodies and post-punk tendencies which twist and turn with frontman George Mitchell's body, as he - still shadowy against the ever-moving backdrop - sways to the music like he's possessed. His vocals are smooth over the repetitive thud of the bass and it's hard not to be mesmerised.
Hitting the halfway mark, their set jolts back to reality with the projection behind the band quickly transitioning to their recently controversial, and frankly quite terrifying, video for 'Hollow Visions'. Next, riotous tides ripple through the crowd and all of a sudden mosh pits emerge, with bodies pushing and shoving in amongst the dark confines of the Clwb. The responsibility of drawing the night to a close is left up to their infamous nerve-pressing 'Possessed' and, just like David Letterman after their live performance, Cardiff is left in sweat-drenched amazement.
The UK Dr. Martens #STANDFORSOMETHING tour in association with DIY continues on to:
25 We Are The Ocean + Arcane Roots: The Shipping Forecast, Liverpool
22 Los Campesinos! + Johnny Foreigner: The Flapper, Birmingham
05 Tonight Alive + Only Rivals: Cluny 2, Newcastle
Tickets are on sale now from ticketweb.co.uk/standforsomething.
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The shadowy clip is directed by Portishead collaborator John Minton.