KNIT ONE, PURL ONE, SORTED
The title of this blog refers to the only knitting terminology I know, most likely gleaned from reading the Beano or similar as a kid. Like Dennis’ mum would be knitting and he’d grab the end of the wool and fuck it up. Classic pictorial comedy! It also refers to Philadelphia psych dogs PURLING HISS, who are headlining this collaborative gig between Lesson No.1, The Joy Collective and FYB. Purling Hiss is a pretty weird name for a band by any standards, if you ask me. Mike Polizze, who was previously the band’s sole member and sings and plays guitar now it’s a trio, has stated that it isn’t a spoonerism of ‘hurling piss’. Feel like we’re going to have to wait until Polizze is on his death bed before he gargles “it... was actually... supposed to sound like ‘hurling piss’,” and then expires.
Before that hopefully very far-off episode, bear witness to a band that sound sense-etheringly ALIVE. Purling Hiss has existed in some form since the early 00s, putting out their first record in 2009. Bouncing between US indie labels of a bedroom and rented office space nature ( Richie, Woodsist, Mexican Summer), the fourth Purling Hiss album – ‘Water On Mars’, released about two months ago – arrives with the help of Drag City Records. They are a good fit for the fuzzy, guitar raunch-utilising and occasionally countrified sounds present on the album. From a band that used to settle for just plugging in and wailing away with everything in the red (which they still do, eg on the immense thud-rock opener ‘Lolita’), PH have developed into a source of supreme sunburnt earworms. I reviewed this album someplace and mentioned Archers Of Loaf, Teenage Fanclub, Silver Jews, The Men, Milk Music, Blur and Weezer. Those last two are probably eyebrow-raisers, and only really refer to one song apiece, but srsly, this off the album is full-on ‘Pinkerton’ jawns, isn’t it? The incredible flyer for this show (designed by Adam Chard) also lists Dinosaur Jr and Kurt Vile, so there y’are, that’s lots of bands namechecked so you can come to a snap judgement based on that.
On the undercard, two Cardiff bands make their debut for Lesson No.1, a big milestone in their lives I have no doubt. CHAIN OF FLOWERSplayed their first gig almost exactly one year ago, supporting Milk Music, which I didn’t go to because we had this gigon the same evening. Since then they have taken their mane-shaking, reverb-soaked and romantically-minded revue out on the road, including as tour support for Pure Love and Iceage, and released a single on tape, then another one on 7”. They are influenced by punk, hardcore, shoegaze, garage and jangle, but are not any of those things. In fact, pretend I wrote “crunk, hardcore, synthwave, garage and jungle” instead. I’d buy it!
Up first are ROUGH MUSIC, who started out last year as a duo and are now a trio. When I saw them play about a month ago, they started with a moody and even ‘glacial’ instrumental rock thing, but this is a red herring leading you on a wild goose chase. Their preferred mode of rocking is clattery yet melodic sludge-pop (getting a Torche vibe here and there) with lots of bottom end and throaty vocals. Great drumming on ‘Welcome To Shanghai’, if you fancy trying out their Bandcamp player thingy.
This gig will start at 8pm and finish by 11, barring acts of God. It costs £6 if you want to buy a ticket, which you can from here, or £7 on the door. I want to say STOKED FOR THE MADNESS!, so I shall. Also, bit of ‘gossip’ here, apparently Mark E Smith came to see Purling Hiss play in London the other day (technically White Fence, who was also on the bill and one of whom plays in The Fall, but whatever). Don’t worry, I doubt he’ll be in Cardiff on Monday.