Opening the night is Mahadev Ok with his acoustic, slightly progy rock. The really loooooooong songs aren’t really my thing and it's a little incongruous with the rest of the night. However, he’s very good at what he does and I could imagine that it would sound great with a couple of joss sticks lit and the lava lamp switched on.
The lead singer of Soft Boys & Girls Club loses his baseball cap headbanging during the intro for their first song. Surely he knew that would happen? The first couple of songs mix Hendrix-esque riffs with a 70’s west coast laid back psych groove and, while it’s interesting, the juxtaposition is a little jarring. Fortunately, most of the set is a beautiful mix of psychy slacker rock, meaning it’s not just the baseball cap that recalls Mac DeMarco. The only downside is that some of the people who are encouraged to dance do so in an Austin Powers style, which is not groovy baby.
Having spent last year supporting the likes of Paul Weller and Primal Scream, Holy Bouncer come all the way to Nottingham from Barcelona. Musically, they run the gamut from dreamy, sun-kissed psych with perfect harmonies through Doors’ territory to early 70’s Rolling Stones, which explains why Primal Scream picked them as support. They can also rock out but, public health warning, there is a drum solo in the set. Usually, I don’t like when bands play long instrumentals in the middle of songs, I find it boring and self-indulgent. Holy Bouncer show how to do it, playing with an ebb and a flow.
They also have a song featuring a harmonica - not enough bands use harmonicas these days. There are other songs that sound like the Super Furry Animals doing covers of The Move. Holy Bouncer end with Kippie Girl Lover, which sounds like one of those 90’s ITV overdubs for the swearing in Die Hard but is actually the title track from their album. They have a super-tight rhythm section and two guitarists that are more interested in adding colour rather than showing off, it’s a great cocktail.
The next Fuzzbox night is on the 8th of February at The Chameleon.