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LOOP + THE KVB @ Leeds, Brudenell Social Club, December 3rd 2013

Support bands at reunion gigs often get short shrift from impatient fans itching for their idols to come on. I've seen good bands draw complete indifference when supporting legendary and elusive bands, as the crowd just don't care. So, The KVB must have something really special to win over a pretty sizeable amount of the crowd. Of course, it probably helps that they are two young and good looking people who channel The Jesus & Mary Chain and Suicide in equal measures for a dark, sexy rock 'n' roll blast. Hard to imagine anyone who likes Loop having a problem with that, especially when its done with such style and flair.


Loop were a band I missed live the first time around by about one year, so a reunion tour really grabbed me but there was that nagging doubt. I have been to see older bands than Loop before but I am talking about the likes of Swans and Faust who play a mixture of new material and reinvented classics. This is the first time I have been to see a band who split over 25 years ago playing just straight up versions of music from over 25 years ago. You know what? I absolutely fucking loved it.

As soon as they took the stage and ripped up into "Soundhead", I discovered that the music of Loop belongs in a venue with loud amps and a haze of lights and dry ice. Finally seeing them live is a bizarre experience as those records I have owned and loved for so long are knocked into a cocked hat by their live renditions. Reaching out across their whole discography, they masterfully blast us with these perfect classics of hypnotic psychedelic rock. It is a place where the influences of Suicide, Can, The Velvet Underground and The Stooges detonate in a spectacular display of sonic fireworks.

Its almost impossible to nail down just how thrilling it was. Four guys up there just rocking out the hypnotic way. Robert Hampson is playing that guitar like he's never put it down. In the midst of rocking out in the crowd, it suddenly strikes me how strange it is that the man up there singing and playing guitar with the man responsible for some of the most intricate and subtle works of sonic minimalism in recent years. Still, who cares when you can enjoy both his modern work and this dazzling acid flashback, its the musical equivalent of having your cake and eating it. I can't imagine this is going to be a long-running reunion so make sure you grab a bit live Loop action while you still can.

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