Date: 12th April 2019
Review and Photography: Rebecca Bush
Stepping into the venue I’m instantly excited: it’s a beautiful place and perfectly suited to tonight’s headline act, ornate and rich décor complete with animal skulls, heavy velvet drapes and a huge chandelier. As I climb the stairs there is already an electric atmosphere, the room is beautifully lit and the people in attendance are a wonderfully eclectic and diverse group.
First on stage tonight is artist Brandy Row, a singer from London with a career spanning more than ten years playing all over the world although not always solo; he has a band too, Brandy Row and the Nightshades.
Tonight, looking dapper in a fitted suit, with his harmonica and acoustic guitar he brings rock and roll poetry to the gathered audience.
Being a solo artist can make it hard to have enough energy to fill a stage but this was not the case this evening. His performance was captivating, the mood was mellow and bluesy rock and roll, and there was a really cool vibe about him.
A true talent and refreshingly lacking in the usual clichés all too many artists these days rely on. You can feel the heart and soul he puts into his song writing, it’s genuine and poignant. His set, although short, was well received and he has no doubt recruited some new fans this evening.
Brandy Row Set List
- Hurry up and wait
- Forever never
- Hold no shame
There is a quick turn around to arrange the stage for tonight’s headliners Twin Temple, who have travelled all the way from LA to play a few European dates finishing here at the Lexington tonight for a sold out show – their debut in the UK.
The altar is set, the lights a low red glow, and the band begin to play the introduction to tonight’s proceedings during which Alexandra and Zachery, in perfect synchronicity, take to the stage, Alexandra holding a skull in her outstretched hands, and approach the altar to begin the ritual. First they turn to face each other before taking up their swords and pointing to the cardinal points and ringing the bell to indicate the start of the ritual. The bell is rung four more times to bring in the rulers of hell at Alexandra’s instruction, and she asks the audience to join with her and hail Satan, which we gladly and loudly do, each response being answered with the gong.
This is the real deal and immediately there is a feeling of incredible unity, standing in this crowd the energy is tangible and very powerful. From the second they arrive on stage everyone in the room is completely mesmerised and in awe.
With the ritual initiated they begin first song of their set, ‘Sex Magick’, making us feel as though we’ve been invited to share the couple’s sacred space and been given a glimpse into their lives as practising satanic witches. I for one feel honoured to be in their presence and it feels we are all very much as one here in this room.
Alexandra’s voice is beautifully smooth and enticing and her power is completely beguiling. Listening to her you’re transported into another era, their love of the genre has enabled them to completely embody that classic vibe and make it their own. If I didn’t know better I’d say we’d gone back in time! Zachary has a great aura, his energy perfectly compliments Alexandra’s and is equally fun to watch. Their passion for what they do oozes from them and the whole band connect effortlessly, it’s a very well oiled machine.
Tonight they are playing their album in all its splendorous glory, weaving their spell on an increasingly enthusiastic ‘congregation’. Second track ‘I Know How To Hex You’ has Alexandra leaning into the crowd, always making eye contact, always connected to her audience, which is all part of her sultry charm.
The room is brought to a sway with the romantic ‘Let’s Hang Together’, a tale of eternal fealty – at any cost. And the beautiful ‘Lucifer’ soothes like a lullaby. The room is in constant motion, swaying and dancing completely under their spell, and happy to be so.
There is a break in the music and Alexandra speaks to the audience – there is to be an initiation! She asks, ”who here would like to join us on stage?” A woman raises her hand – holding a viking horn no less – and is summoned forward and assisted onto the stage. Alexandra takes her name – Janet – and then Zachary blindfolds her and binds her wrists with red ribbon to symbolise the ties of ignorance. Alexandra leads her through the affirmations before she is ritually removed from the binds, illuminating her and delivering her from the abyss. Zachary then takes up the grail and marks her with the blood of Babylon and she is initiated and presented newly adept.
Alexandra then asks us to join her in another chant – HAIL JANET! Which we all repeat as she leaves the stage clearly elated to have had this experience.
“The Devil (Didn’t Make Me Do It)” follows and Alexandra’s voice is crooning perfection, her playful energy infectious. Singing ‘ I’m Wicked’, the lyric ”I’m the Devil and I’ve got you under my spell” is pretty spot on!
Its one thing to enjoy the music – of which I was a big fan already – but to see them perform the songs within the atmosphere that they create takes it to a whole new level. Metal has long stood hand in hand with satanic imagery but in my opinion this pairing suits the subject matter much better, seductive and alluring.
Alexandra’s and Zachary’s stage presence commands attention , they are absolutely mesmerising.
To end the ritual ‘In Nox’ plays and Alexandra takes the chalice from the altar and drinks the blood from it before spitting it into the crowd, and as the blood trickles from her mouth she anoints a few audience members – myself included, placing a mark in blood on our foreheads.
I was left entirely bewitched by their ‘Satanic Doo-Wop’ vibe. Its heady mix of crooning, beguiling sounds and that enticing satanic aesthetic. Completely authentic and beyond enchanting – these guys are the real deal in every way!!
Speaking to the band, I asked if they have any message for their UK fans and here is their response:
“Thank you for joining our unholy ritual. We loved playing in London and hope to get back here as soon as possible. Hail Janet! Hail Satan!”
Twin Temple Set List
- In LVX
- Sex Magick
- I Know How To Hex You
- Let’s Hang Together
- Lucifer My Love
- The Devil (Didn’t Make Me Do It)
- Santa Muerte
- I’m Wicked
- Femme Fatale
- In NOX