Killington Fall – Live Review – Hobgoblin Staines

South West London based ‘Killington Fall’ – the hugely exciting four-piece alt/prog-rock band,  played an eagerly anticipated set at the Hobgoblin, Staines (the best music venue in the West…) on 28th July. This band is already ascending into the stratosphere- famous for their ever rising, ever unfolding, crescendos of power and brilliance, multi faceted diagonal chord structures and intermittent irregular rhythms. Though discordant in nature at times, the sounds never jar or alarm, creating an unusually surreal  aural syntheses.

Cameron and Max, on guitars, create shy beams of light that emerge briefly and then slowly fall into darkness, while Patrick on bass and James on drums create vertiginous girder like structures, bass lines that creep and crawl, run and jump, and rise and fall – with each swelling upsurge or softly weakening arrangement.

A profusion of architectural patterns infused and enlightened the happy Staines crowd. Tunes like ‘We Spoke in Flames’ with delicate icy fronds developing into edgy beats, with those ever-present icicles of guitar adding to the luminosity and jaggedness of each dimension, before lofty swathes of notes create a vertically rising stream of consciousness.  Then, at last, the buzz-saw bee-drone bass-line business end of the band brings home the rock goods in time, with a rat-a-tat military style fanfare of drums and grotesquely statuesque vocals. Somewhere a guitar-note is squeezed out, and startles you, like a wound on the face of an innocent angel.

Other numbers like ‘To a God Unknown’ create a judder and a shudder- as if some gigantic invisible beast has just crossed the threshold unseen. The curtains are gently swaying in the cool morning air, and with the approach of the monster, the sense of anxiety increases.  Or ‘This City is Covered in Water’ with a tune that has a classical sounding veil of the sheerest, most nebulously delicate patterns, draped across it’s visage.  It’s as cool as a spring morning, yet the softest of patters gently stir up a maelstrom of liquid pools.

Killington Fall song structures are constantly shifting in irregular angles beneath the elaborately crafted frameworks. Tempos change frequently – every shot of the wrist from James on drums or stroke & pulse  from Patrick on bass, make valuable contributions to the overall sound. ‘Path/Trails’ has gloomy wind-chime beginnings and creates a bleakly painted landscape of mesmerising clouds upon a sullen washed-out sky – until a sudden drop of sun glistens briefly through the gloom. Finely picked guitars lace and unfold against the chiming rhythms and carefully plodding percussion.

Ever-growing slants of sound are forever rising, kriss-crossing and obliquely radiating from the power-house of ideas created by these talented musicians. An absolutely unique and truly fascinating performance from one of the most spectacular bands on the scene right now.

© Neil_Mach
August 2011


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