Joined: 24 Oct 2006
This is a little late as the gig was almost two weeks ago but I've been on holiday so this is the 1st chance I've had. I've done my own small review of the night and I've included another review written by Alisdair Reid for YME music which has lots of big words in it.
I arrived a little late and walked into Whitehouse's sound check, they were just setting up at this point. Once they got round to making some noise Joe the sound enjineer slowly began to panic. He was sure they were going to break the stage monitors. Surgeon was up to see the show as well as he was playing in Glasgow the following night. He managed to reassure Joe the sound man by telling him he had to forget everything he had learned about obtaining a clear sound and not to try and correct the 50hz hum or any feedback as it's all part of Whitehouse's sound. The subs in Cabaret Volitaire are awesome, probably alot more power then they need for
such a tiny little venue and it makes a show like Whitehouse a far more physical experience. Once the subs were pushed to there maximum the place was shaking.
The doors opened at 7pm. The 1st act, Ingen, played a techno set which was all his own stuff rather then a dj set. I could see a few people were enjoying it including me. It was still early though so the crowd was pretty sparse and the techno beats were probably not to everyones tastes as it was Whitehouse they were here to see.
By the time I went on there were a lot more people which I was happy about because the last time I played it was to a crowd of two, one of them being my best mate, the other some girl who was only there because she wanted to ride him. When I started playing alot of people came down from the bar area as well. I really enjoyed playing and I had the place rattling with the bass. The subs are under the stage so my eyeballs were vibrating as well which made it hard to focus on my gear but who gives a toss.
I had already heard small peices of Whitehouse's set during the sound check but that means noting as it was minus all there sleazy stage antics. I had seen video clips on Youtube of Whitehouse gigs which really don't do them justice at all. Nothing could have prepared me for the intensity of there set. The low end was ripping through the crowd, different
frequencies of bass vibrating different parts of your body while the needle sharp high end splinters through your eardrums. It was the most brutal noise I've ever heard. And at the same time there's these two dirty middle aged men (one of whom looks like your stereotypical peodophile) taking there shirts off, sliding around in each others sweat and rubbing each others nipples. My girlfreind always hates when I play Whitehouse albums but she really liked the gig because she found it so funny.
If they are ever playing in your area, don't miss them. They are a must see band.
This is Alisdair Reids review:
WHITEHOUSE/ SAVIER/ INGEN
Cabaret Voltaire, Edinburgh
6 September 2007
Whitehouse have ‘enjoyed’ a rare cultural position that yields major influence over the alternative electronic music scene, since they pre-dated it. Their first gig – as their well-documented website will tell you – being in the 70’s, they have contributed a vital shadow of punk-by-association to dark electronica in its various forms, lending this shade to artists around the world (Extreme Music from Africa, Russia, Japan) with their Susan Lawley record label.
The variety of their influence is represented, perhaps, by the support acts Savier and Ingen tonight. Each has obviously been impressed hugely by the extremity of Whitehouse’s ‘confrontationalism’, two different materialisations of a common root. Ingen is the techno inflection of this sentiment. Were this a slot on any ordinary techno bill, he would be the black sheep: a physical voice of something more psychologically dark and abstract, frustratingly inadequate but human – cyborg – because of this. However, testimony to the musical extremities of this evening, even Ingen’s beats are too conservative. The appropriate mentality of tonight demands a space without the box, so much so that Savier’s Godflesh drums intrude by providing too much cohesion to the unformed potential energy the rest of his cacophony threatens. Rhythms find new ways of speaking as they come together in the noise; the promise of a new language, with all the violence that comes with such a rupture.
But, to decontextualise: ‘We are concerned here ... with the intention realized in the work ... the distinctions that concern us are not those between stylistic “techniques” in the formalistic sense. It is in the view of the world ... looked at in this way, style ceases to be a formalistic category.’ Whitehouse have survived the musical evolution of the last 30 years by anticipating the attraction of the dark that characterises the techno and noise of these support acts, and maintaining their cult position at its core because they are, genres aside, what I must call punk. ‘Cult’ status, we should remember, is the opposite of commerciality in many ways. In Whitehouse’s well-matured philosophy, this seems to demand a parody, or pastiche, of commercial success: an empty laugh at another night’s re-enactment of public adulation. The applause the act receives is entirely inappropriate; the crowd mocks itself by enacting the social conventions of the spectator-performer relationship.
For this reason, Whitehouse are simultaneously at the core of a postmodern philosophy, of belief in nothing but social games: an antisocial mixture of solipsism and nihilism. They work hard to incite the crowd, but to no apparent end – their subjective alienation reflected by the invisible instrument the pair take turns to masturbate, wrench, and wrestle with. There is no real connection other than the belief that somewhere in the din, something is being manipulated. The balance is thin between an attempt at true social anarchy – one with a laterally distributed social energy, a Dionysian duo willing to sacrifice themselves for the good of an overall camaraderie in their audience – or merely two embittered men who struggle with their worldview. To test this balance, I throw a copy of the day’s Guardian onto the stage. Could Whitehouse ditch the rhetoric and improvise with something topical? would their anarchy respect a powerful left-wing cultural symbol? would the fourth wall between performer and spectator be finally breached tonight? The Guardian was stamped upon before it was thrown from the stage. Perhaps they second-guessed my bait, and discarded it as contemptuously unsophisticated. But worryingly, the possibility remains that they could not accept an attempt to steal the limelight, the domain of the stage they are territorially – unconstructively – possessive of.
This much speculation cannot come without some substance, however: Whitehouse are sophisticated. Perhaps their success should be measured that I rather received what I was looking for with my Guardian stunt: however I interpret it, with two moves I received what I felt was a personal reply, an understated layer of discourse and communication yielded with ease beneath another, parodically superficial one. Or then again perhaps I was another object in the din being manipulated.
glad you had a good one. i found it hard to focus on the second review, but thought his Guardian stunt would have probably added to the hilarity of the evening, except i'd have just been laughing at him in a distincticly no-postmodern way, the dickhead.
_________________ ノイズコア - you know it makes sense!
Joined: 24 Oct 2006
Who in the hell would ALLOW this kind of photo of themselves?
Now THAT'S D.A.R.!!!
I move that the image of this dumbass be added! Maybe under the heading 'Doss!'
I think if that guys not already dead he soon will be. It looks like whatever is growing in his brain is about to burst through his skull. So maybe image wasn't at the top of his list of priorities in that pic.
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