THE FANZINE THAT FEATURES SMALL AND UNSIGNED BANDS
Sunday, March 21, 2010
CONCERTREVIEW :BRENDAN PERRY (BRUSSELS, BOTANIQUE 20/03/2010)
When back in 1981 both Brendan Perry and Lisa Gerrard decided to join hands, no one could have expected that this Melbourne duo would have become one of the founding stones of the darkwave scene. Twenty years later, the impact of them is still immense. Not only they inspired many bands but they also became the fave band of the usual wavefan but also from the manager who buys himself one CD per month and pretends to be Mr Culture. The story is known by now. In 1998 there was not only the end of the artistic colloboration but privately, there was also the end of their relationship. The split of the band gave us several solo-albums by Lisa (which weren't all that good because there was too many attention drawn to Lisa's vocals only) and only one album by Brendan Perrry ("Eye of the hunter" which was released in 1999). The weak sales of the album must have inspired Brendan to rejoin Lisa on stage, and so it happened that in 2005 a Dead Can Dance-reunion got born. Sadly enough, it were concerts only as the two didn't record anything new. 2010 must be like a new start for Brendan as this summer his 2nd album "Ark" will see its release. Before Brendan would start an American tour with Bauhaus-frontman Peter Murphy, he did some European shows from which the one in Brussels was one of them. The choice of the Botanique-venue can be seen in different senses. For the fan himself, it's genius to see such a legend in such an intimate atmosphere, but for the artist it stays a tiny venue. And you can bet your ass that if Lisa returns to Belgium, it'll be a huge venue like the Cirque Royal. But this time it's not about Lisa, but about that other half from that famous duo. I was asking myself if it'll be another troubadourconcert cos no one from the audience actually heard a sole track of the new album and everyone expected it to be a sort of "Eye of the hunter"-sequel. The question soon got answered when Brendan got on stage (with a leather jacket and looking more and more like a real Peter Gabriel-doppelganger) and started the set with "The arcane" from...yes...that first EP by Dead Can Dance. It soon turned out that it won't be the last track by Dead Can Dance that should be played that night... The gig was a rather bizarre one...no ethic percussions or any of those other strange instruments that were typical for the later sound of Dead Can Dance. Two keyboards, a drum, a bass and two guitars : with these instruments you can obtain something that's been described as a postpunk-sound. If it wasn't for the grey beard of Brendan, you'd swear you were seeing Dead Can Dance in 1984! At moments there were times I was thinking of Cocteau Twins because of the Guthrie/Raymonde-sounding guitars. It soon got clear that the new songs from "Ark" also had that postpunk-sound. Hearing tracks like "Utopia" (included with some beats!) or "This boy" makes you wish to hear the new album as soon as possible, and judging on the liveversions alone, it's surely an album to look forward to as well! The public were very enthusiastic even if I'm sure that no one would have dared to dream that Brendan decided to turn back the clock for 20 years. Brendan ended with what he started : a Dead Can Dance-track and this time we got enjoyed by a great minimalistic version of "Severance". This gig was great for people like me who have missed the one from Dead Can Dance in 2005. Was nothing wrong then? Two things perhaps... Brendan was promoting an album that would see its release on a much later date (but that had nothing to do with him) and hoping for that track that didn't got played ("In power we entrust the love avocated"), but such things are labelled as details.