Racebannon + Beestung Lips + Dream Dreams The Dreamer

Sun 23rd November 2008
Hare and Hounds
Polar Bear - Kings Heath
Swordfish - Birmingham city centre

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Racebannon started in 1996 with vocalist Anderson and guitarist James Bauman. They soon found the other members who would round out the line-up and they started recording and playing shows. After a string of releases on indie labels, the band signed with Bloomington-based Secretly Canadian in 2001. The label was known mostly for singer/songwriter indie bands, and having a noise/metal band among their ranks was challenging for the public to grasp. Their first release for the label, In The Grips Of The Light, was even recorded by Mike Mogis of Bright Eyes fame.

Their next album, Satan’s Kickin Yr Dick In, was a Rock Opera. It was released in 2002 to a fanbase hungry for the next offering; little did they know it would be so dense in noise obfuscation and content. It tells the tale of Rodney, who sells his soul to the devil and, in the course of seeking a better life, becomes lounge singer Rhonda Delight. This trans-gendered soul swap is conveyed through hazy blasts of distortion and the tortured vocals of Anderson (aka Delight.) Secretly Canadian then reissued an earlier release from Level Plane called First There Was The Emptiness in 2005. And after that there was silence.

At this point, a new album was brewing and the band were very careful about leaking the results. Acid or Blood veers away from the murky noise of earlier releases and spotlights the bone crushing riffs and manic vocals of Bauman and Anderson. While still retaining their nervous energy that hints at Melt Banana, the guitars have stamped out songs as memorable and hummable as anything from Melvins Houdini. Songs like Translucent Lifeforce and The Hard Way are incredible in their might while maintaining a feverish quality. Few bands can capture this kind of live ferocity in the studio. And Racebannon do it in spades.


Flyer designed by Matt Snowden- No Heaven Waiting