A Place To Bury Strangers, Camilla Sparksss @ Patterns, Brighton, UK, May 20, 2023 | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Thursday, May 23rd, 2024  

A Place To Bury Strangers

A Place to Bury Strangers, Camilla Sparksss

A Place To Bury Strangers, Camilla Sparksss @ Patterns, Brighton, UK, May 20, 2023,

May 22, 2023 Photography by Andy Robbins Web Exclusive
Bookmark and Share


It’s near pitch black in Patterns when Camilla Sparksss emerges from the shadows. Silhouetted by the stark strip lighting behind her, she unleashes a set of enchanting industrial noise and Warp inspired beats. She multitasks with every limb to coax a unique sound from the pair of decks on which she spins her own dub plates, using them alongside samplers, a keyboard and mystery pedals at her feet, all of which probably requires a degree in electrical engineering to fully understand.

Camilla Sparksss
Camilla Sparksss

When Oliver Ackerman wanders on stage and gives the audience a cheery wave and a genial greeting, it ill prepares anyone who is unaware of what to expect next. There’s genuine concern for anyone who hasn’t packed their ear protection for this Saturday night out in England’s south coast party town.

Sure enough, within seconds the stage is a picture of glorious chaos. A blitzkrieg of strobe lights illuminates the deafening blast of sound created by Ackerman, bassist John Fedowitz and drummer Sandra Fedowitz.

A Place To Bury Strangers
A Place To Bury Strangers

Some people might lazily pigeonhole A Place To Bury Strangers as nothing more than shoegazers, but anyone looking down at their feet tonight is likely to be blinded by the pulsating white lights that burn into their retinas.

Ackerman in particular wields his battered Fender Jaguar guitar like a caveman swotting at flies. At one point he wedges his instrument in the lighting rig fixed to the low ceiling over his head, before retrieving it only to pass it amongst the front few rows of a crowd only too eager to lend a hand.

A Place To Bury Strangers
A Place To Bury Strangers

The brutal thudding intro of “Alone” still sounds absolutely primal more than a decade since its release, as the unholy wall of fuzz collapses around it. “I’m So Clean” is a rabid punk song slathered with overloaded distortion, while a crushing clatter of noise erupts from Ackerman’s guitar over the galloping rhythms of “You Are The One”.

A Place To Bury Strangers
A Place To Bury Strangers

Then, one by one, the band clambers over the crowd barrier and from nowhere Ackerman wheels a veritable picnic table of electronic cables and gadgets into the middle of the audience, from where he barks indecipherably into a microphone. He’s flanked closely by his bandmates, but equally as tightly by the audience members who surround them. They frantically reach for their mobile phones, trying desperately to capture this barely illuminated spectacle amid a shroud of darkness broken only by a smattering of iPhone torchlight.

A Place To Bury Strangers
A Place To Bury Strangers

Returning to the stage, perennial live favourite “I Lived My Life To Stand In The Shadow Of Your Heart” is as close as APTBS get to playing something constituting a hit tonight. Unsurprisingly, it sparks a mild frenzy among some of those pressed up against the barrier as they headbang in time to the explosive blasts emanating from the PA.

It’s left to Sandra Fedowitz to take centre stage though on the closing “Have You Ever Been In Love”. She yelps into her microphone while pounding away with relentless glee at the drums she’s pulled right up to the barrier. A ubiquitous strobe light at her feet transforms the whole thing into something resembling a flipbook animation.

A Place To Bury Strangers
A Place To Bury Strangers

This lengthy account feels like superfluous fluff though after hearing one stunned punter sum up the evening’s APTBS experience in just three words as the house lights rise. “That was intense,” he quite neatly concludes.

A Place To Bury Strangers
A Place To Bury Strangers




Comments

Submit your comment

Name Required

Email Required, will not be published

URL

Remember my personal information
Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

There are no comments for this entry yet.