The Rock Club UK

The Claw at The Garage London, Sat 23 Feb 2013

I was not sure what to expect from this debut gig of The Claw, very loud, sure that’s a given and slightly odd as they are promoting themselves as a secretive, progressive, psychedelic band.

But the truth of it was a rather fun night of old school rock theatre. Warm up band Trieste were a classic, balls out, foot planted wall of noise that showcased some very tight guitar talent.

Second set was by Vodun, who quickly turned on the weird with, their Afro, Metal, Voodoo, Soul sound. Their strong lead vocalist, eccentric, Mick Fleetwood sized guitarist and powerhouse pint sized, rock chick, drum kit pilot, they got the slight crowd up off the collection of odd furniture that lined the walls like a school disco. The band ended their set with a huge selection of broken drumsticks and a guitarist lying on the floor, off the stage, to play out the last riff of the final number.

The build up to the main event saw the swelling crowd being teased by the rebuilding of the set and intermittent use of a smoke machine. With the big reveal now upon us the German heavy metal sound track was replaced by a James Bond soundtrack to accompany a parade of what can only be described as shaved Wombles in monks’ vestments.

Up goes the Claw salute and the crowd return the gesture. Cue the music, a frantic release of battered Korg keyboard, flying V and chrome guitar. A loud and atmospheric set including The Bells, Seize Decay and Undoing Wrong filled the inadequate space of Garage’s Upstairs venue with a soundtrack of noise that would be brilliant for any Hammer Horror remake.

Without knowing the songs, I was quickly into the raging rhythm of psychotic alien monks and feeling by the end of the set I had been preached to and, in truth, probably converted. I think that a sundown slot at one of this year’s rock festivals would be an ideal way to show the act off to a wider unsuspecting audience.

For those of you with a preference for loud theatrics this is worth a look. The music is all the better for the visual impact of the band, but having listened back to the music online today its one that’s going on my playlist, though not for the train section of my daily commute.

7/10 for the night, though only, because the venue was too small for power of all 3 bands.

Iain

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