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Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Live Review: Rangda + Carlton Melton + Gala Drop

Rangda + Carlton Melton + Gala Drop 
Corsica Studios, London October 18

First up in the intimate Corsica Studios is Portugal’s Gala Drop who combine all sorts of diverse influences into a synthetic amalgam all their own. Mixing up tropicalia, psych, moog-driven spacerock and even hints of reggae they remind me of some of the more festival-styled acts from the mid-‘90s (which is certainly no bad thing in my book). A highly interesting start that sends me scurrying to the merch stand to check out their output thus far. 

Californians Carlton Melton have grown to be particular favourites of mine over the last year. The long droney jams on their recent LPs didn’t quite prepare me for their live show however, which is swathed in epilepsy-inducing strobe. After a slow start the three piece launch into a cosmic blitzkrieg that culminates with frontman Rich Millman diving into the crowd and handing his guitar to a bemused punter who finds herself participating in a dizzying maelstrom of psychedelic noise. A truly incredible show, like sticking your head in a super collider for half an hour.

After this, Rangda’s more cerebral brand of experimental complexity doesn't strike nearly the same visceral chords. Theirs is music to be admired rather than the kind that inspires devotion. Enjoyable, but not the full-on flailing wyldness that makes Carlton Melton such an incredible live proposition.

Austin Matthews

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