Oval Space – 10th September
There’s an air of curiosity at The Oval Space tonight. A birdsong is gently coming through the speakers as the crowd, almost hesitantly, fills the space in front of the stage. As the lights dim and thick smoke is propelled on to the stage, an image of a dusty looking starfield appears on the backdrop, the birdsong is replaced with static and as it builds, four silhouettes take their places.
One of the few criticisms of The Acid’s debut album, Liminal, was that the vastness of their sonic exploration meant that, as a listener, it was easy to be distracted… to lose focus. Tonight this is playing to the band’s advantage. They’re playing Animal and I’m totally zoning out. The mesmerising visuals that evolve with the set, Ry Cuming’s glassy, crooning vocals, that sub-bass, and the masses of space in between them all, have created some kind of mass hypnosis. I’m uncontrollably swaying from side to side along and I’m not alone.
The whole delivery is understated yet oozing with confidence. Cuming’s guitar work is so delicate and he handles the instrument like it could break in any second, but as the machine gun drumming of Creeper starts, the fragility is replaced with intense urgency. The swaying becomes more frantic and we’re not so much zoning out but losing our minds.
It’s these moments that really bring The Acid’s performance to life. Perhaps they are too few and the set lacks those peaks and troughs that keep the audience on their toes. But if, like me, you’re happy to wallow in layers of sub-bass, subtle, deliberate instrumentation, and truly haunting vocals, you should probably go and see this band.
Buy: The Acid – Liminal