and support
The Portland Arms, 26.2.13

With Russell Brand banging out the beats on drums - OK a younger, musically hyperactive look-a-like with better taste in clothes and undoubtedly more endearing - and two visually dissimilar sisters pumping out the tunes on guitars and making up their music triangle on stage, Bleech grabbed your attention from the start, swooning through I Wanna Be Me, one of several stand-out lyrically fascinating guitar and drum-heavy songs from a tightly bound set, that made you wish they could start again when the last song ended.

Lead singer and guitarist Jennifer O'Neil's serenely bewitching vocals harmonised satisfyingly with those of her sister, bass-player Katherine, and school friend, drummer Matt Bick. Mondays and slowie Flowerhands showed the musical depth in their range, and an ability to nail down lovable riffs and lyrics which together form images for their audience.

Impressed enough to buy the album and an EP afterwards, my friend and I chatted with Matt about musical influences etc. They've been a band for four years, hail from East London, and have festival appearances here and in Germany in the pipeline. Bleech are definitely a band we shall be following with interest from now on.

Earlier, The Beverley Kills bounced their pop-punk power-tunes around the walls of this shiny new rebuilt and extended Portland Arms venue, enticing all those assembled to come nearer to share their fun all-girl rock vibes.

And Mark Ellis and Justin of the Judge Rheinholds had both lulled us into a false sense of mellow security with their relaxing (albeit somewhat croaky on the high notes: a bad voice day for Justin apparently) solo electric and acoustic sets respectively.

Thanks to Repeat Fanzine for putting on gigs of this calibre at recession and dole-beating prices!

Words : Ali Wood

Pix : Rosey R*E*P*E*A*T, more here