Review: Sunn o)))

Currently on a creative high – both Life Metal and Pyroclasts from this year have seen career-best reviews – drone metal’s most respected druids seemed determined to level the Queen Margaret Union. With more amplifiers on stage than any act this side of My Bloody Valentine, Sunn O))) (pronounced ‘sun’) use music as a way of eliciting primal responses via repetition and sheer bloody volume. It reverberated around the venue, and inside everyone’s ribcages.

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Review: Pelican

With no words to guide listeners, Pelican rely on their instruments to do the talking. Their 4-person line-up belies the sheer weight of their music, which is rarely anything other than gargantuan. Unlike their post-metal peers in Cult of Luna and Isis who are often as delicate as they are aggressive, Pelican’s dynamics are more restricted to ‘loud’ and ‘louder’ making for a brutal hour of riff after crushing riff.

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Review: Chromatics – Closer to Grey

It’s hard to overstate how influential Chromatics have been this decade. Their magnum opus, 2012’s Kill for Love, is responsible for more than just a fresh wave of 80s-influenced synthpop bands. Along with their work on the Drive soundtrack, the band ushered in a wave of backward-looking nostalgic art, from TV shows (Stranger Things) and films (It) to fashion and fonts. They may be far from a household name, but they’ve directly or indirectly shaped much of what has been en vogue for the last few years.

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Review: Gus Dapperton – Where Polly People Go To Read

Aesthetic pop knows its audience. His perfectly cut bangs and face worthy of fashion adverts framed in neon on Where Polly People Go to Read’s cover, Gus Dapperton’s music is the kind of synth pop perfect for 2019. It caters to our familiarity with electronic music, which sounds both modern and retro, nostalgia mixed with our rediscovered love for synths and hooks. But it’s also tied into how artists present themselves, carefully curating personas which makes their presence on Instagram as big a deal as where they land on the charts.

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