Hypothetics | Kingsdown Youth Choir | StandToOrder
Friday 16th June
Photography by George Ward
We headed to Dareshack for a night of some of the most exciting, young and experimental bands Bristol has to offer
Dareshack is an unassuming venue. You walk in to an extremely pleasant coffee shop with friendly staff and a good beer selection and you would be forgiven for having absolutely no idea that it hosts one of Bristol’s best venues in its backroom. Surprisingly big, the room is dark, the sound is excellent and, once the first band start, the atmosphere is hypnotising.
We were here to celebrate the release of Hypothetics excellent new EP and, after a relaxed interview in Castle Park, we made our way to see the first support, StandToOrder. A new band to me, they were the biggest surprise of the night. With a huge 9 members on stage (beat that BC,NR), I was sceptical but excited. Considering one of these members spent the entirety of the performance drawing with chalk with his back turned to the audience, you could feel that, with the wrong crowd, this might be a step too far.
However, what unfolded was beautiful. The performance appeared to be led by a deadpan frontman, reading from a notebook but then, like a poet drowned by background noise, the band slowly exploded into a post-rock wall of sound. As heavy as it was fragile, they are ones to watch on the Bristol scene.
In a similarly experimental streak, Kingsdown Youth Choir (not actually a youth choir) played a more laid back set, with a violinist giving them a unique edge to other similar bands. Despite a particularly noisy crowd, the newly reformed band kept their cool and beautifully maintained the cinematic atmosphere created by the previous act.
Hypothetics, only hours after their debut EP released, performed with the confidence and swagger of a far more established band. After rapidly firing through a shortened version of their already very short EP, the band launched into new material, shaking up their sound with each track and keeping us guessing throughout.
George Bailey’s vocals were aggressive and powerful, sounding as good yelling punky lyrics as he does rapping. The vocal effects added a new layer to his performance, sometimes overbearing but always creative. Pacini (guitar/vocals) was a multi-talented force, with his noodling in between tracks being a personal highlight and his vocal moments being a refreshing change in tone.
Joe Holliday’s bass was tight and controlled, becoming a whole new beast once his distortion pedal was slammed down. Undeniably though, the propelling force of Hypothetics was Jim Wilcox, whose drum performance was astounding. Powering through every track, he held our attention at every moment, even knocking off his drum mics on more than one occasion. When he pulled out the drum machine, I feared they would lose their electric passion but I was soon proven wrong as the pounding electronic beats flooded the room. These moments made me the most excited for how Hypothetics might evolve in the future.
Last night was a perfectly curated, experimental and extremely exciting showcase of Bristol’s current scene. From post-punk to post-rock, each band got the opportunity to show off their unique character and, if you catch any one of them, you too should be equally as excited to see what beasts they develop into.
Listen to Hypothetics’ debut EP ‘GETS LET DOWN!’ here: