ATTRITION – Live at the Arches, Coventry, 23-09-22

Review from
of our Sept 23rd gig at The Arches in Coventry….

“Attrition don’t play Coventry often, I’m not really sure why, probably because they were happy being popular everywhere else. This is a chance to see the original line up from the eighties back together again. It starts with low synth waves around the room and sampled voices taking underneath. There are two at the back working the electronics and creating the wonderfully lush sound and there are two at the front, Julia with spiked red hair and a cape and Martin in his usual black, huge boots holding him steady. Martin has a bundle of joss sticks in his hand as he takes the mic and leans forward over the audience. The beats slide around as his low vocal merges with the operatic notes created by the woman. It’s dark electro and to my shame I’ve only seen attrition once before so haven’t witnessed this sublime mixture of sounds in person. The two vocals don’t seem like they would merge but the contrast makes the music resonate more. They move into drum patterns that make your feet move and they create sci-fi strange soundscapes, but whatever they play. It’s not comfortable, it’s not bright. Industrial beats leak through brilliantly and you embrace the shadows. Martin’s stopped leaning over the edge of the stage leaning on the mic stand, he’s now brandishing it at the crowd as an opera is going on behind him. It’s high drama as the beat wavers into squelches and disappears.

Then, techno beats par excellence and an over the top vocal that transforms it from something we’ve heard before in to an extraordinary trip. A huge bassline dampens it down and the odd sounds that they conjure over it take your mind away from the drum and bass that is happening right in front of you. It sounds like Coventry from the eighties up, the broken glass and concrete, the patchy grass and bottles of wine in the precinct as the sound goes into frantic mode, just before it stops….

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