LIVE REVIEW: 65daysofstatic @ Boiler Shop, Newcastle (05.12.17) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image by Nick Wesson

“The audience is weird. Nobody’s moving. It’s like they’re just standing there appreciating it.”

Conversations overheard in the toilets can sometimes be interesting, funny, and downright surreal but this little snippet from about halfway through 65daysofstatic‘s set should be filed under WTAF. Apart from their earliest days when they were often found on the same bill as emo and punk bands, getting folks sweaty in the mosh pit isn’t really what they’re about. Although people’s feet weren’t necessarily moving, I suspect that in their heads – and their hearts – there was quite a lot going on.

The 65dos template is one that has become depressingly familiar over the last few years. Hundreds of identikit post-rock bands have emerged, all showing off how clever they are with their guitars that don’t sound like guitars, their haunting keyboardy bits, and their atmospheric rise and falls but very few manage to reach the heights of the Sheffield quartet.

Little wonder then, that in attempt to differentiate themselves and, no doubt, keep themselves motivated, 65dos have, as well as releasing a number of original albums, retroactively written soundtracks for sci-fi movies, created an infinite soundtrack for a video game and worked on the deconstruction of their own epic compositions into their rawest and most elemental parts. With these in their armoury, it was satisfyingly contrary to hear them play what amounted to a ‘greatest hits’ set.

Introducing tracks from their epic No Man’s Sky soundtrack, you could hear the subtlety woven throughout. Where it sounds like simplicity itself, it’s like looking at a beautiful painting – a multitude of textures and brushstrokes going into making something, that on the surface at least, seems effortless. 

Playing a tribute to Stephenson’s Locomotion in the home of its creation was also entirely appropriate, before following up with standouts from their first album – the waspish banger I Swallowed Hard, Like I Understood sounding as fresh as ever.

As a retrospective it was perfect and as a spectacle, it was nothing short of astonishing.


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