Gig Review: Pink Narcissus/Peter Cat/Matt Finucane/Lewis McKale, The Hope & Ruin, June 11th 2018.

Having seen Matt Finucane and Pink Narcissus previously but not for a while I was intrigued to see what would be served up tonight by them in a packed bill with two other performers who were new to me:

First up was Lewis McKale who gave a lively performance of his folk infused sound.

Matt Finucane tonight was with band. Seeing Matt perform solo and with band previously, the band experience brings out another level of performance from Matt. Tonight we saw him as The ArtRocker, the Balladeer and The Rocker. Also, the band setting allows him to showcase his guitar playing too. This felt like a best of set with Matt showcasing songs which ticked the different boxes of his sound and perhaps indicating where he may be heading for his next release.(though you should check out his latest EP ‘Ugly Scene ‘ now)

Next was Peter Cat who vocally sounds like a cross between Neil Hannon of Divine Comedy with a soupcon of Scott Walker and a smidgeon of Jarvis Cocker. Songs of love lost were the order of the day accompanying himself with guitar and other devices.

The headliners tonight were Pink Narcissus. Veterans of the Brighton gig scene, they’ve gained a reputation for outrageous behaviour on-stage which at times has been to the detriment of the music which is strong enough without bells and whistles. Tonight’s headline performance was slightly truncated in length but didn’t lack for passion. Oli Spleen waited on the dancefloor whilst the band started playing before making his entrance. Walking the fine line between artrock and metal they make this work giving their sound a muscular edge without being boorish or clichéd. Key to their sound is Lilith their guitarist, who makes it swoop one minute and roar the next. Having seen them about six months ago, they’ve used the intervening time to hone their sound to vivid effect.

All four acts are worthy of your time and gig-going pennies but Matt Finucane and Pink Narcissus especially showed that they are ones to watch for 2018 and beyond.

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