Holy Other, Stereo, 23 Aug
Criminally under-attended, tonight starts out promisingly nonetheless with a streamlined, infectious and kinetic DJ set from Fort Romeau, dropping a blend of italo, synthwave and electro. Another TriAngle signing, Vessel's ominous, reverb-heavy live set explores the outer realms of techno, hip-hop and dub, his intricate basslines setting up a satisfying echo in the cavernous chamber of a half-empty Stereo.
Holy Other arrives sans the ominous, face-shrouding hood he wore when he played at Chambre 69 in May, and begins an emotionally-charged, hyonotic live recreation of tracks from his debut Held. Tense Past's plaintive, looped vocal lifts itself out of a delicate framework of pulsing cymbals and synths, evolving into an effects-drenched cry from the heart.
Impouring's stop-start, juddering rhythms and stuttering clicks, with its thrilling two-way tempo-shifts, chiming synths and breathy vocals, hits right in the chest. A thunderous, church-like reverence accompanies early track Touch, as Holy Other reconstructs vocal flourishes, held breaths and sighs into elaborate sonic sculpture. Breathtakingly beautiful... where were you? [Bram E Gieben]