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The Great Escape Day 2

25/04/2012 By Ben Wright

So, by this point you’re probably a little the worst for wear, but you haven’t got time to feel sorry for yourself, so put the kettle on, get some alka seltzer down you and head into town where you have a choice of music to lose your hangover to. Acoustic Fleet Foxiness from Montreal’s Half Moon Run at Audio, understated poetic alt country from Flip Grater at the Haunt or gentle ukulele quirkiness from Martha Paton at the Komedia. If you’re feeling ready for some Catalan garage rock’n’roll then get yourself over to the Prince Albert for Mujeres, but if it’s a little too early for all that then you can always catch them at Audio tomorrow evening.

Fiction play the first of their two Green Door Store gigs of the day and sound like a funkier Wild Beasts with more hooks per song than is strictly necessary. Jaguar Shark at the Komedia mix disco and shoegaze to make reverb laden, atmospheric mystery pop.

Back at the Prince Albert, Seward mixes miniature glitchy electronics with fragile folk banjo picking, double bass and brushed drums. If you can get over the fact that his voice somehow sounds like Kermit and Miss Piggy at the same time then this could be a lovely way to spend half an hour. If you missed them at the Dome yesterday then lo-fi psychedelic Tame Impala offshoots, Pond return for an intimate outdoor gig in Shipwrights Yard before completing their hat trick of shows at the Corn Exchange. Another band who played yesterday, Gross Magic return to treat us to a second dose of synthy psychedelia at the Queens Hotel.

Hatcham Social play the Green Door Store and their noisy 1980’s indie clatter sounds like Edwyn Collins fronting Joy Division, with teardrop guitars and a standing drummer. Rich Aucoin brings his symphonic pop epics to the Blind Tiger for a mid-afternoon show ahead of his Sticky Mike’s evening set. Expect Flaming Lips style theatrics, plenty of dancing and the occasional confetti shower.

Princess Chelsea is set to light up the Haunt with her fairytale electronica; if Broadcast played at a fairground it might sound something like this. We Have Band begin their attempt to cram three gigs into five hours with a set of DFA influenced synthpop in Shipwights Yard. The Suicide Of Western Culture bring a host of drum machines and second hand pedals to the Albert to create an instrumental post-electronic sound like a less frantic Fuck Buttons.

Eagulls make a visceral, ramshackle punk racket, like a sloppy Mclusky. They’re doing a set at the Queens Hotel and one later at the Loft. Odonis Odonis at Coalition looks like a must-see, surfy guitars over a murky, Deerhunter backdrop, goth vocals and an electronic tidal wave of effects and snare rolls. French Films are from Finland and play anthemic new wave. Rumour has it they put on a cracking live show, so it might be worth taking in their set at the Blind Tiger.

Nordic Giants offer a theatrical take on Sigur Ros’ soaring instrumental landscapes. Gorgeous howling guitars building up to cinematic crescendos, probably not the best band to see if you want a dance, but if you’re waiting for your dinner to go down you could do worse than to head to the Komedia for their only show of the festival. At the other end of the musical spectrum, Me And The Bees play sunny lo-fi pop at Psychosocial; Beat Happening jamming with The Moldy Peaches.

Negative Pegasus look set to demolish Audio with walls of guitar noise and pounding drums. Avoid if you’ve got a headache, but if you’re feeling brave then it might be worth having a peek. Kwes twists vintage analogue keys and static crackles to create a futurist dreamworld, reminiscent of Memory Tapes and Neon Indian. Signed to Warp, he brings his live show to the Green Door Store, and I can’t think of a better way to see the evening in.

You would be wise to arrive early for Alt J at the Blind Tiger, they mix folky guitars, laptop ambience, innovative percussion and skeletal vocals to create a sound which is very much their own. Scottish miserablists The Twilight Sad bring their post-rock folk songs to the Coalition, now with added krautrock influences. If all of this sounds a bit bleak for you, then get yourself to Audio for The Bots, two teenage brothers from California, who play some mean bluesy punk, despite the fact that their instruments are still far too big for them.

Championed by Jack White and signed to his Third Man imprint, The Black Belles play at the Pavillion Theatre and sound like Karen O providing a garage blues soundtrack for a 50’s B-movie. However, you may have to choose between them and The Computers at the Hope, the missing link between Black Flag and Chuck Berry.

Two of the most talked about bands of the festival go head to head as the evening draws to a close; Howler play their first show of the weekend at Horatios, or you could get a second chance to see Django Django, this time at the Blind Tiger. You would be advised to arrive very early for either of these, but if you don’t make it then try Rolo Tomassi at the Haunt, synth led progressive hardcore from Sheffield.

Blanck Mass is the solo project of Benjamin Power, one half of Fuck Buttons. His live show is a truly terrifying prospect, hypnotic apocalyptic rumbles that will make your trousers shake and probably give you nightmares. He plays the Pavillion Theatre, but you will probably be able to hear him from Eastbourne. If this doesn’t finish you off for the night, stay on for Forest Swords, an interesting mix of drone, library music and dub.

If that’s still not enough for you, then treat yourself to some energetic math rock from Tall Ships at the Pav Tav or Dan Le Sac’s chopped up hip hop beats at the Concorde, and then get yourself off to bed because there’s still another whole day of this nonsense ahead.

Ben Wright

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