Venus Bogardus / Langur / Gouranga
Where: The Croft // When: 08/06/2012
by Jodie Humphries
Artscare nights always bring something a little different to the depths of Bristol; Mr Artscare himself, otherwise known as Dave Thomas looks to provide entertainment that you wouldnâ€™t necessarily see in Bristol. This ranges from the out of town bands, through to the one off shows like this particular gig with Venus Borgardus who played their only UK show this year to a crowded front bar of the Croft to shouts and cheers.
Of course no Artscare night would be complete without a sprinkling of local bands in the form of two Bristol favourites; Gouranga and Langur. Opening up with riffs chugging and churning were self-confessed grungecore act Gouranga. This three-piece bring a blend of energy and darkness to their shows; distortion and feedback fill your ears as thundering drums beat a path through the grunge. It isnâ€™t just grunge these boys bring â€“ far from it; their sound incorporates elements of stoner rock, punk and in some instances, touches of metal. The further Gouranga get into their set, the stronger the songs become; set closer â€˜Solomon Grundyâ€™ shows how their writing skills are improving by day as this is a powerful song that closed the set perfectly. Gouranga are the perfect band to enjoy a few pints to and you will find your head nodding â€“ you just canâ€™t help it.
Now Langur are an interesting band indeed â€“ this isnâ€™t a band you could describe as run of the mill â€“ this is probably a band you would struggle to describe at all because you would be lost for words after bloody brilliant. You would simply feel that this is enough to make anyone want to see them as you donâ€™t have to be a fan of a particular genre to enjoy what Langur are creating. Their music is complex, disjointed, quirky, fast and funky; hooks and beats fill your ears, no song is the same as the next as they mix noise pop with punk and what could be described as a little psychedelia on the guitar work from Andy. Langur bring fun to the stage; they are relaxed and you equally feel relaxed in their presence. The trio know how to create a hell of a lot of noise; quality noise; noise worth checking out as they slice and dice their way through song after song.
Venus Borgardus are no strangers to the stage; formed in 2005 the band have played stages in the UK and their current home in the US where bass player Hannah Levbarg hails from. Ending back in Bristol for a flying visit, it was hardly a surprise that they were coaxed to play an intimate gig. Venus Bogardus play a sound that is honest; itâ€™s lofi punk rock with a real DIY feel to it. The band feed in their love of literature, poetry and art into the music to create a sound that is unique and compelling. Their music holds a melodic quality to it, yet the punk style vocals of Hannah and James bring an energy to the music that heats it up and intensifies it. Their sound is alternative and their use of words exemplary; final song â€˜Dance-Collision [Chaz]â€™ with its almost spoken-word style singing from Hannah is slow and determined, picking up in all the right places showed their style down to a tee.