Acid King at the Underworld: Live Review

By on 17 July 2013

Acid King. Photo courtesy of Gemma Shaw.

The temperature in the Underworld may be rising to near unbearable degrees, but if there’s one band you’d want to see whilst sweating through a lazy Sunday evening, then surely it’s Acid King!

Wizard Fight (Facebook) open the show with a set of surly sludge riff-mongery. Though not the most original band in the world, either musically or lyrically (“this next one’s about an evil wizard who does drugs and shit!”), their take on the genre is decent, if a little workman like in places. A few slightly clumsy transitions aside, when they lock into a groove it’s hard to keep your head still. For a young band, they certainly show promise; definitely one to keep an eye on.

Despite the truly terrible name, instrumental droners The Lumberjack Feedback (Facebook) prove to be pretty damn hypnotic, accenting their lurching Neurosis-esque grooves with a pair of more than capable drummers. Although initially the double drum kit set up feels a little gimmicky, watching the duo bounce beats off one another with increasing complexity as the set progresses is highly entertaining indeed. Whilst their song writing skills may not be quite as masterful as some of the bands they’re aping, they nevertheless bring their own sound to the table and, all in all, put on a really good show.

Pet The Preacher (Facebook) (come on, surely we can’t have exhausted ALL the good band names already?!) clearly have confidence oozing out of every pore, and their frontman gives it his all tonight; it’s just a shame they’re so unspectacular in every other respect. Their grungey take on stoner rock has more in common with Pearl Jam than it does Kyuss, and although perfectly functional, lacks that certain spark that would really make them stand out.

Tonight is really all about Acid King (Facebook), however, who plough straight into an incredibly meaty sounding rendition of ‘Busse Woods’. The sound is deliciously thick and weighty, and the band’s blissful, hazy sound wafts over the audience like a billow of smoke on a sweltering Summer’s day. Despite the slightly apathetic Sunday crowd, the power trio are on form tonight. Lori’s soaring vocals tap into that eerie, timeless quality that makes Ozzy era Sabbath the best thing in the world, and the riffs she produces are heavy enough to sink a small country. Bassist Mark Lamb has a tone that your friendly neighbourhood sludge band would kill for, ensuring that the three-piece lose none of their density whenever Lori whips out a solo, and drummer Joey Osbourne absolutely batters the kit, his slow yet immensely powerful grooves propelling the band forward into oblivion. Towards the latter half of their set, a fair portion of the crowd looks pretty exhausted, but the real doom heads are lapping it up. Ending with the frankly awesome one-two combo of ‘Electric Machine’ and ‘Sunshine And Sorrow’, Acid King have really proved themselves to be the reigning kings (and queen!) tonight.

WORDS: Kez Whelan

About Kez Whelan

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