Bardo Pond live at XOYO 22/10/11

Originally published on The Line Of Best Fit October 26, 2011

Beards are a major part of rock. They signify dedication and appreciation, a laid back attitude and something to stroke during widdly bits. The Beard’s anaemic cropped cousins may be the hijacked uniform of fey hipsters, but it’s still possible to spot a true Beard – its wearers unaffected by tastemaker bribery, the kids in Skins or the passing of time. The Beards are out in force, congregating at London’s XOYO for the legendary stoner space-age shoe-gaze of Bardo Pond.

Tonight The Beards are circling before roosting in their primed position. Not for a clear view, but to carve space for their own sonic cocoon from the aural barrage to come. Bardo Pond are not a band to watch, but experience, and waiting their arrival is as intimidating and exciting being a Victorian bachelor and catching a flash of ankle, it’s blood soaring.

This is the band which defines experimental noise rock. Without these there would be no Mogwai, no God Speed You Black Emperor nor Arab On Radar. Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine may be the populist entry level options for the passive drone-gazer, but Bardo Pond are the cult heroes, arousing The Beards for over 20 years.

It’s fitting that as Bardo Pond start, the venue’s air-conditioning comes on, seemingly synchronised with the monstrous Marshall stacks and bass cab belching a guttural chug which is crisply clear as it is loud. The air is reverberating as Isobel Schollenberger’s flute flutters through a distorted thundering embrace of mid tempo stoner doom. It’s wonderful, with hairs tingling and ears clamoring to acclimatise…..

Continue reading full article here.

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