There’s a fine line between being a cool cat onstage, and looking like you’ve pooed yourself. Hundred Cannons singer Jase is a focal point as seen through beer goggles, a small child shuffling and jerking through spastic poses, chucking mic stands, swearing a lot. While clearly a teeny bit repressed underneath, and not as heroically drunk as Booze (whose possibly single gig set the, uh, bar pretty sky high), it’s standard entertaining stuff, sorta 10% inspiration, 90% inebriation. There’s music as an afterthought too: skeletal and abrasive sketches of guitar and drums that sound roughly like a weakling Stooges. Sometime Joy contributor Matt puts it best: “They’re blatantly shit, but put them on at ATP, tell everyone they’re from Brooklyn and people would love it.” Jase does dive into the drumkit at the end, and I genuinely love that.
The last time Science Bastard waggled their cocks in my face (metaphorically) (sort of) it was as the opening band of last year’s Swn festival. Hours after the set there was rolling in the gutters and drunken fisticuffs, which may explain the switch from five members to three, and an all-new-tunes policy tonight. The fiery fullness of sound remains though, often coasting on drums and guitar effects noise while singer Vern attempts to molest every member of the audience. The best moments of an itchy, tempo-hopping set are when the post-hardcore screaming gets mixed with two finger keyboard and drawn out double drumming – weirder, longer stuff where melodies stretch out into strange new shapes. Mostly though, it’s a blast: jagged, noisy, carved out rock that chucks up volume, car boot sale treasure giveaways and faces you don’t want to punch. For a double bill of local(ish) bands, Science Bastard get the necessary escape velocity.