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Explosions In The Sky - Camden Roundhouse, London - 19th May 2011 (Live Review)

Tuesday, 24 May 2011 Written by Chris Jefferies
Explosions In The Sky - Camden Roundhouse, London - 19th May 2011 (Live Review)

Robert AA Lowe may be the most over-indulged musician in the world. Anyone who gets a 35-minute support slot in front of 4,000 music fans and chooses to use it making deep moaning noises while his laptop plays a downright irritating looping melody over and over again, must have had accusations involving the words 'head' and 'arse' bandied around fairly freely. Lichens is an interminably indulgent solo project from the former 90 Day Men vocalist, and frankly the less said about it the better.

Fortunately Explosions In The Sky were on hand to prove that post-rock doesn't have to be pretentious and obtusely obscure. Taking to the stage with a humble word of thanks to the audience before they'd even started, it was clear that they were dedicated to replicating their unique on-record sound instead of just noodling around aimlessly. Opening with an thunderous wall of sound for 'Last Known Surroundings', the first track off their recent album 'Take Care, Take Care, Take Care', they proceeded to splice together nine of their best from their 12-year career.

The undoubted highlight was the double-header of 'The Only Moment We Were Alone' and 'Your Hand In Mine' from their seminal 2003 LP 'The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place'. Climaxing with a euphoric arpeggio, it was hard not to get caught up in the uplifting swell. At many times Explosions In The Sky created an effect that was more akin to a force of nature than a traditional rock band, with rolling and surging orchestral swells. However, it would have been better to end on a more triumphant note than the emphatic, but undeniably gloomy 'Greet Death'.

Leaving on another grateful thank you to the crowd, the four Texans were clearly quite overwhelmed at how much impact their inimitable sound continues to have on both sides of the Atlantic.

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