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      Poltergeist - The Kazimier, March 16

      Poltergeist - The Kazimier, March 16

      Poltergeist is an apt name for the new Will Sargeant project, especially as tonight the Kazimier’s stage, draped in white cloth, looks a bit like it’s dressed up as a ghost. Not only that, but there’s something distinctly creepy, and more than a little gothic about the music of the band, which tonight comprises current Bunnymen Sargeant (guitar) and Nick Kilroe (drums) along with ex-Bunnyman Les Pattinson on bass.


      When we spoke to Sergeant some time back he promised there would be a visual element to tonight’s show, saying: “It’s a bit boring watching three blokes noodling onstage isn’t it?”


      Well we’re too polite to agree but, true to his word, tonight – only their second show ever – the three are wearing white tops to match the background, and film clips are projected on them for the duration of the gig.


      The mostly black and white, found footage style clips are short and varied - from nature close-ups to speeding cars - providing an arty effect as opposed to any narrative.


      With no vocal mic rigged up, it’s up to an MC in Victorian dandy garb to introduce the band with a megaphone, the only talking in the set.

      Poltergeist - The Kazimier, March 16

      The music is suitably filmic, and incorporates a lot of reference points to make one dark, moody whole.


      Les Pattinson – who left Echo and The Bunnymen early in their career to continue his work as a boat builder – is worked very hard as the intricate bassline, along with the masterful and very loud drumming of Kilroe, provides a backdrop for Sargeant’s more sound-scapey guitar sounds.


      Though the band have talked about psychedelic rock influences, they’re never tempted into self indulgence, and avoid the kind of constantly building and crescendoing gimmicks of much post-rock. Instead it’s restrained and moody, not unsimilar to Joy

      Division and at times – when the guitar is at its crunchiest – even recalling The Fragile era Nine Inch Nails.


      It’s great stuff but, being hypnotic and repetitive, it does wash over you. While we’re not relegating it to background music, it’s just probably best enjoyed as a soundtrack to something else. An exorcism, perhaps?

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