Fvnerals at the Northumberland Arms, Newcastle.
The Northumberland Arms. What a shithole. Pretty much literally. I turned up soon after doors opened and the toilet cubicle was already a volcano of molten shit with sick all over the sink. Icing on the cake was a white guy with dreadlocks rolling a joint at the other sink, later to be seen twenty minutes later rolling another in the phonebooth outside.
First on - Rachel Lancaster
Local lass who had a setup of macbook, guitar, and a fuckload of pedals. Played droney ambient stuff that I quite liked. First track was especially good. Reminded me of Noveller and Grouper but had a vibe to its own, a bit more earthy perhaps. As in dirt and grit, not the band Earth! Not loud enough though, and the bass was mixed too low.
Second on - Dystopian Future Movies
Three piece of southern gothic doom in the vein of Chelsea Wolfe. Not a fan of the name but most names are shite anyway when you think about it (cough Radiohead cough). Anyways the start was ropey as fuck. The sound being the main culprit. The drums had the awful combination of being too loud and sounding really cheap. But things got better as it went on and the last two songs in particular were really strong. They have their first album out next year and I'll give it a listen/see them if they tour in the north east again. Hopefully in a place which has a better sound. Again the bass was far too low. I don't think the guitarist's compression pedal helped things either, but I'm no pedal expert. I love awkward stage banter, because I really feel their pain, and they certainly did that here.
Last on - Fvnerals
And then suddenly, the sound was great. Another Doomey three piece but at full tilt was more sludge. Really enjoyed. Seemed like the (tiny) crowd did as well. 100% of the audience were uniformed in all black and happily slow headbanging away. As the tubes on the amps warmed up the guitar sounded really satisfying and heavy. One of the best bands I've seen live for this sort of thing in a while. Bought a shirt afterwards and everything.
So the gig was well worth the fiver, but unfoetunately the place was pretty sparse for people. Really fucking annoys me that the scene is so dead around here.