Satyrs/ Hessian Jailer / Krakatau/ Matthew Brown – Gasometer

On a cold wet night in Melbourne the duo Satyrs begin proceedings with their first ever gig, offering up a noisy burst of delayed casio and modulating oscillators. They build into something of a crescendo, before breaking down to a minimalistic pulse, and a kind of dueling saxophones arrangement that they continue for the remainder of their short set. There are worlds colliding here, an almost free jazz freakout over minimal synth pulses and beats, delayed casios and single oscillator acid breaks. A fascinating debut.

Hessian Jailer makes journey music, experimental electronics of the knob twiddling variety, where noise, dub and drone intersect at various moments during his set. The beauty is that he’s always moving, the sounds always evolving. Hunched over a table of diverse electronic devices he continuously flirts with musicality, bringing in untreated beats or playing a gentle run of keys, yet then he retreats again. We know he’s capeable of a much more cohesive style of digital dub. We’ve heard it on his debut EP on his own Bad Laser label. Yet tonight he’s content to travel, mining a much more experimental and improvised path.

Krakatau emerge from the dust of the 1970s, angel dust or pixie dust or somewhere in between. The keyboard driven semi-improvised jams are informed by classic psychedelia and soundtrack music, building across the bass riffs and drum fills, but never veering into pastiche or simple emulation. “These guys need a screen that projects film grain,” suggests an impressed onlooker. Krakatau’s music sits in old school wigouts, but their dedication to the spirit of the music allow them to be free to make it their own. Just don’t take the brown acid.

Next up Matthew Brown offers us his minimal MS-20 and TR-808 setup, progressively building up the post-psychedelic electronica of a generation beyond Krakatau. Modulating phases sweep from the synthesiser while the 808 is programmed live into a frenzied wall of pulsating raw rhythm. Brown’s music is something to behold, his mastery of analogue synthesis is outstanding and his ability to continually produce new and interesting music makes him one of the most dynamic musicians around today.

Bob Baker Fish

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