Detroit’s The Gories tore up The Magnet and Getintothis’ Glyn Ackroyd was there to see the carnage.
Detroit garage rockers The Gories blast into town tonight as part of a short UK tour.
Hailed by Jack White as ‘the best garage band in America’, their blend of rock n roll, blues and vintage R ‘n B has drawn a large crowd to the intimate confines of the Magnet. Their street credentials are certainly recognised judging by the healthy turnout of the Liverpool music scene cognoscenti.
A gig that starts with the guitarist already in the crowd is ok in our book and support act Mincemeat build on that foundation with some heavy chugging riffs, vocal distortions and jagged guitar lines.
The singer certainly has presence, staggering across the stage and at one point straddling the bass drum, burying his head between the snares, arse to the crowd, with guitar wailing. He ends the set screaming into the soundhole of his guitar, crawling on all fours to great applause.
This would normally be a hard act to follow, but then we remembered that Ohmns were next up!
They wasted no time in providing an atmosphere in which a mosh pit could flourish. There’s a controlled fury to their set and their dark, heavy soundscapes delight devotees and newcomers alike. The set ends in a swirl of feedback and wild applause as a guitar is held aloft and scraped across the low stage ceiling. Their reputation grows.
Another hard act to follow but, with Ohmns now installed in the mosh pit, the bar is raised yet again. A band with cult live status rather than mega record sales, Gories singer Dan Kroha jokes ‘Welcome to our sound check’ as the three piece put the pedal to the metal and basically keep it floored for the whole set.
Their famed primitive sound is epitomised by their minimalist line up of two guitars (no bass) and the tiniest drum kit possible (think street busker chic). However when the sun-glassed Peggy O’Neil gets to pounding out those tribal frat party rhythms and spiky solos intertwine with choppy, urgent riffs the mosh pit goes nutzoid. It’s as if The Kingsmen, The Stooges and Bo Diddley met up on the set of Animal House!
Kroha and Mick Collins swop lead and rhythm duties effortlessly, Kroha nails a superb harmonica and vocal call and response and The Gories wear their hearts on their sleeves with fabulous covers of John Lee Hooker’s Boogie Chillen and The Coasters Idol With The Golden Head. Things get messy in the mosh pit where the flailing legs of the crowd surfers threaten the low hanging glitter ball, and the band seem totally unfazed by the presence on stage of semi-naked youths bashing out the rhythm on stage lintel.
We want more and we get it with a suitably incendiary Nitroglycerine bringing the encore to a close as once more the ceiling is utilised by Collins to stimulate a frenzied feedback amidst wild scenes. A shot of pure rock ‘n roll adrenaline that went straight to the heart.
Pictures by Getintothis’ Gary Coughlan