Dal Forno is a bassist and singer accompanied by a live sound designer who provided sound effects of wind birds as well as industrial shimmering noise. The goal of his accompaniment seemed to be to disassociate Carla from other singer songwriters and to represent emotional states sonically rather than just add colour to her bass playing. Her music was reminiscent of 1990s shoegaze; techno with understated vocals lying almost beneath the cacophonous drones of the instruments.
Her vocals, whilst soft and deliberately unexpressive, were lifted by what can only be described as copious amounts of reverb and a subtle delay on her vocal microphone. While I enjoyed her distinct approach to song writing and arrangement I found her set a little monotonous and would have preferred more light and shade in the performance.
Hookworms were a welcome surprise as some of their recorded material seemed quite ambient and low energy but their performance was the opposite. They are part of a burgeoning psych-rock movement across the current alternative music scene. The outfit consists of synth, sound effects and bass (all one person), two guitarists, keyboardist and vocals, and drums. Their set was accompanied by projected Slaughterhouse 5-esque visuals and lights which gradually built into a frenetic, intense display.
Their music had elements of noise rock, punk and theatrical art rock among other things. The use of instruments as evocative producers of sound struck me. For example, during one of their songs a guitarist used a traditional rapid palm muting technique to produce painful scratching noises. The lead vocalist possessed a high pitched yet somehow natural delivery I would not have expected from a Viking looking man from Leeds.
Though a cliché, my only negative comment about their set would be that they were only on for an hour, most likely due to noise restrictions. Therefore, if I were to see them again I would watch them at a licensed concert venue where I could celebrate them for a fuller show.
- Image courtesy of MIF/Hookworms