iLIKETRAins – Fibbers

Artist: iLiKETRAiNS
Venue: Fibbers
Date: 27/04/08
Rating: * * * *

Despite putting their all into this gig, iLiKETRAiNS were clearly bemused by the quietness of their Fibbers audience. But it is hard to imagine people not finding themselves awed into solemn and introverted self-reflection when confronted by this music. It is emotive, but with a sense of ancient and epic melancholy- maybe akin to a mountain reminiscing about its lost youth. This feeling, largely constructed through their distinctive use of heavily layered crescendos of drums and guitars, leads to an incredible sense of intensity, although this can seem off-putting to some.

But there is far more to this band than just post-rock heaviness. iLiKETRAiNS revel in eccentricity. Their songs (and the fascinating projections that accompany them) find inspiration largely in heroic struggles of the past – from Captain Scott’s ill-fated attempt to reach the South Pole to the tragic life of chess champion Bobby Fischer. It is on this score, however, that iLiKETRAiNS were, for me, a disappointment. Their eccentricity was most intriguing in their older material, which was mostly left unplayed. Nonetheless, when the band left for the pre-encore break, it felt like a spell was broken. The audience, previously entranced, burst into wild applause. The people have spoken.

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