Melt Banana – [Live]

Tuesday, 01 November 2011

In the Nineties, if you knew who Melt Banana was you were in the minority and were probably a small group of underground hardcore enthusiasts or on a Slap a Ham Records 7” mailing list. Melt Banana has managed to survive the years and gain a wider audience. Maybe because of their stylish spazz and experimentation in hardcore, the band has outlived the legion of tough-guy hardcore bands that refused to go beyond what was expected of them. Now, almost ten years after the mania has dispersed, Melt Banana returned to a small club as fans took shelter from the rain to witness the insanity ensue. Openers Tera Melos chopped up the the crowd with their stylish math rock – a perfect start to an evening that promised unconventional music.

Melt Banana’s set relied heavily on their recent albums. The tiny members played like they were ten feet tall and caused the adoring audience to spin themselves into a frenzy; jumping off the stage and surfing through their defaulted friends' hands. Mysterious guitarist  Ichirou AgataIch hid on the left of the stage in soft blue light with a surgical mask taped to his face. Was he making an incredible guitar face the whole show or was he as serious as a monk? We’ll never know, but his razor-sharp, light speed guitar playing expressed everything and he abused it like a circular saw dropped into tangible static.

A collection of eight short total spazz freakouts ranging from ten to forty seconds broke the set in half before Melt Banana finished with more songs from Bambi’s Dilemma, which pretty much dominated the entire set. Some more fucked up breakdowns of noise and experimentation would have been appreciated, but no one was complaining. At the show's end, the crowd was barely standing; sweaty and bruised and begging for seconds. Melt Banana banged into them like a train and left them on the edge of reality.



Melt Banana's North American tour continues. Click here for a list of upcoming shows.

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