Telstar Sound Drone

support Anders
author BV date 19/03/16 venue Loppen, Copenhagen, DEN

Often times I find that I have double-booked myself when it comes to concerts and related activities. Most often, I find myself in situations where I have scheduled myself to see a show with a late start where I then have to either scurry on home quickly afterwards or drop the show altogether because I’ve forgotten that I have to go to work or something similar. As I once again found myself horrendously double-booked, I opted for prioritizing the show as this was an event that I simply could not miss. Not only would one of my favorite live bands, Telstar Sound Drone, play on this fine evening – they would also be supported by a seldom seen live act in the form of Anders Stub, whose three solo albums are amongst my most common listens when I yearn for that special DIY vibe. Knowing that I would be utterly destroyed on the following day, I nonetheless entered Loppen with the highest of expectations.

Photos courtesy of Stefan Frank thor Straten

Anders

I’ve been wanting to see Anders (Stub), the support of the night, ever since acquainting myself with his three solo albums and his brief appearance on the ”Svensk Psyche Aften” live LP, where he appeared with his live band, “Det Psykedeliska Undervattensorkestar” consisting of Anders Grøn (drums), Morten Aron Larsen (guitar) and Henrik “Hobbitten” Klitstrøm (guitar) from Spids Nøgenhat and Nikolaj Lykke Nielsen (bass) - all of whom joining him once more on this evening. His set was off to a fairly rocky start with “Hey Hey Bye Bye”, a fairly low-key affair which had been spruced up significantly by this powerful sounding lineup. As the band moved from rocky, almost shaky, territory they finally came into their own on “Confusion is Mine” – leading the band into a successful array of tracks including “In Silence and in Tears” and “I Keep My Eyes Wide Open”, two of my favorite tracks from Anders’ collected discography. The latter was especially powerful with its almost melancholic vibe and its strangely uplifting chorus – all underlined by the collective backup singing and Henrik Klitstrøm’s characteristic bubble guitar sounds.

“Drop Your Bombs” was one of the ultimate highlights with its explosive riff – ultimately resulting in fiery guitar-solos, ferocious drumming and a rumbling bass that was fairly certain to move around your intestines for the duration of the song with its low-end power. “Sadness Be Gone” and “Metallic Boys” end the set and, in turn, showcase a front-man seemingly humbled by the sheer reception of the performance. People demanding encores, applause only gradually fading and a general vibe of amazement – this was truly the work of a support act with a solid grip on both songwriting as well as performance.

8

Setlist:

  • 01. Hey Hey Bye Bye
  • 02. Holding Back the Tears
  • 03. Confusion is Mine
  • 04. In Silence and in Tears
  • 05. I Keep My Eyes Wide Open
  • 06. Drop Your Bombs
  • 07. Sadness Be Gone
  • 08. Metallic Boys

Telstar Sound Drone

Following a fairly brief changeover, Telstar Sound Drone took the stage to the sound of their continuous, atmospheric drone-loops swirling around in the background. Slowly, Hans Beck kicked off the drumbeat whilst Mads Saaby joined in on guitar, playing the opening riff of “Through the Back of Your Head”. Exploding in a vortex of different sounds, the track is an intense start to what would inevitably be a memorable performance. As Sean Jardenbæk contorted his body to the rhythm of the music whilst howling out his echoing vocals, the crowd had a permanent fixture upon which they could gaze as the music veered further and further from conventional ideas and more into sonic warfare. Occasionally grounded by Christian Norup’s bass grooves, Telstar Sound Drone launched into one powerful track after another whilst not relying on hits, but instead on atmospherics and cascading riffs in beautiful unison, perfectly exemplified by “Mirror Pieces” with its somewhat catchy vocal melody, droning riff and atmospheric drones.

With ”Satellited” Telstar Sound Drone kept the unusually high pace going, sweat dripping from the band-members’ faces, bodies and clothes in this inferno of heat and sound. Leaving almost no time for common talk, Jardenbæk rarely spoke except for few utterances like; ”This one is from the new album, it’s called ‘Dead Spaces’”. With those words, however, came a change of pace and what seemed like a well-deserved catch of breath for the band, as “Dead Spaces” slowly unfolded in its own utterly uncompromising nature – a nature which is also a defining trait of their new album as a whole. With “Evaporation” the band picked up the pace once more and perhaps even kicked it up a notch with drummer Hans Beck taking the lead in terms of catching the eyes of the crowd. In spite of the straightforward riff of “Evaporation”, Henrik Klitstrøm’s bubble guitar once more proved a powerful tool in beefing up the soundscapes with liquid sounding leads and atmospheric rhythms altogether before the band once more faded into a well-needed, highly meditative drone in the form of “Feels Like a Ride”.

”Drugs Help” appears as the third and final track from ”Magical Solutions to Everyday Struggles” on the night’s setlist. Surprisingly, the relentless drone proved to be a massive sounding live track fully on par with the band’s earlier material – a rare feat, as newer tracks tend to seem less forceful until the crowd becomes adequately familiar with them. The main part of the set concluded with “Golden Needles”, an old favorite of mine, before the band retreated from the oscillating madness they left behind them on stage. Their retreat didn’t quite last, as the crowd was far from willing to let the night end there. Returning once more, the band launched into “Hurricane Fighter Plane” – thus reaching yet another climax at the end of what was indeed a highly memorable performance. If you’re not yet aware of it, Telstar Sound Drone are a fantastic live band and it’s really a damn shame that they don’t play live more often.

9

Setlist:

  • 01. Through the Back of Your Head
  • 02. Light Around
  • 03. Mirror Pieces
  • 04. Strange Apples
  • 05. Satellited
  • 06. Dead Spaces
  • 07. Evaporation
  • 08. Feels Like a Ride
  • 09. Feel It
  • 10. Drugs Help
  • 11. Golden Needles

—Encore—

  • 12. Hurricane Fighter Plane

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