Sunday, 23 May 2010

489 MY VITRIOL, Mo-Ho-Bish-O-Pi, Thirteen:13, Bristol Fleece, Wednesday 28 February 2001

Sandwiched between all the Emetrex shows was this intriguing triple-header, featuring 2 of the most promising UK bands of the moment, plus a genuine wild card. So I persuaded Ady to drive, and myself, himself and Rachel set off early! This one was a sell-out and was already busy when we hit the Fleece at 8.30. Thirteen:13 were due on 15 minutes previously but were running late, so we had time to shoehorn ourselves over to the bar, get drinks and wade to the front before they came on.

Thirteen:13 are a bunch of optimistic young bucks with guitars in their hearts and melodic influences worn prominently on their sleeves. Thus, when they're sharp and poppy, like lovely harmonic single "Perfect Imperfection", they come across like early Teenage Fanclub arm-wrestling with bouncy Seattle popsters Super Deluxe, their set then varying from this touchingly melodic high to some reasonable but slightly dated sounding knockabout cheeky chappie Britpop. Nevertheless, considerably more good moments than bad from a band I'd happily pay to see in their own right.

Moving swiftly on afterwards were a frankly motley looking trio, our wild cards Mo-Ho-Bish-O-Pi. Wearing sun-visors with flashing lights, Hawaiian shirts and self-mutilated jeans, they looked as if they'd had some disagreements on image so decided to go with everyones' ideas! They immediately kicked into a smart, attention-grabbing set, full of some intelligently put together yet still dirty and self-consciously quirky glam thrashy pop. Shades of Chicago's finest, Number One Cup, mashed and clashed with other influences such as Glitterbox and Placebo to make for an intriguing noise, whilst they were visually dynamic, swapping instruments (except for the fretless bass player) and revealing some seriously freaky eye make-up!

Also well made-up was My Vitriol's vocalist Som Warner, whose liberal application of foundation and mascara was obvious. Significantly more obvious was the quantum leap forward this band have made since their nevertheless impressive Reading 2000 set. An instrumental opener, which sounded like the cracking of the Earth's crust (honestly!) segued effortlessly into a brilliant "Losing Touch", and I felt spookily as if I was watching one of the most significant British rock acts of the next 5 years. My Vitriol tonight were simply awesome; the power, focused aggression and primal yet perfectly articulated rock recalled Sugar, and I piled into the mosh with a strangely unreceptive crowd and showed them how to do it! My Vitriol have a shimmering substance to their music which also recalls Ride or The Pale Saints, with their segues and loops from one titanic slab of rock into the next. But most of all, this band knows how to rock, and seriously clean house whilst doing so. New (and heavily rotated on Radio 1) single "Always: Your Way" was awe-inspiring, a mightily anthemic yowl of a track. Great stuff from a band who surely are future Reading Festival headliners, if there's any justice. We'll be hearing a great deal more from My Vitriol!

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