Date: February 2, 2018
Venue: The Black Heart, London
Review by Sabrina Selkis
Photos by Simon Kallas
Sometimes you need to mix it up and not just go to death metal gigs like I tend to do. Another genre I am quite into is drone/doom metal, and tonight The Black Heart is hosting just that. As part of the 8 Years of Chaos weekend, Darkher, Dystopian Future Movies and Soden are taking ownership of the upstairs pub venue.
Train delays make me miss the opening band Soden.
I am told by a friend that the trio from the West Midlands did perform well, and they definitely deserve to be checked out. That’s me being told. To know more about them, look up their Bandcamp page: https://sodenband.bandcamp.com/ .
Now, time for Dystopian Future Movie to get on stage. The little venue is small, not too packed although all are crammed by the stage. It is dark, very dark and I can hardly see what is happening on stage, I can just hear. Vocalist and guitarist Caroline Cawley asks for blue lights to be put on and she gets them. With Bill Fisher on drums, Oisin O’Doherty on bass and Rafe Dunn on guitar, they go on performing a great 45 minutes set. The post-rock band is based in Nottingham UK, and they clearly take a Sonic Youth approach, only slightly darker. The vocals are hypnotic, the guitar riffs are heavy and doom-y, and the drums magnetic. I have this strong feeling of being thrown back at Roadburn Festival in Holland last year, watching Subrosa, Amenra… when later I checked the band’s website, I actually read they did support those bands. They also played Desertfest last year. The audience seem to really appreciate their music, banging their head slowly to the drum beats. No wonder their debut LP “Time” has been critically acclaimed, I can see nothing but big things happening for Dystopian Future Movies. A band I will definitely keep in my radar and playlist.
After a ten minutes break, Darkher gets on stage. It is still very dark, seeing very little of what is going on stage. I can just spot the vocalist curly hair, and a glimpse of the drummer. West Yorkshire-based vocalist and songwriter Jayn H Wissenberg released her debut album ”Realms”. It is a very impressive debut album, the songs deals with death, spirituality, fear. Darkher’s set is hypnotising, with a beautiful haunted sound and eerie vocals. The drums are heavy, and combined with Wissenberg’s dark guitar riffs, this create a surreal atmosphere. The fans are gathering more and more, hypnotised, banging their heads slowly, they look like they are in a trance state. Again I feel thrown back to Roadburn. The comparison to Chelsea Wolfe could be understandable, but Darhker clearly has its own world and there is a lot to be expected from the band. It really feels like Darkher is at the beginning of something big.
Tonight, was a great success, don’t hesitate to check out those bands if you can! And a big shout out to Chaos Theory for helping us out on this one.