60 Million Postcards, Bournemouth

Thursday nights at Postcards usually signal an upcoming or touring band, delivered from the roster of the We Broke Free team. Over the years they have given us many a gig showcasing up and coming talent passing through the area. One or two have gone on to greater things, notably Spector and Wolf Alice.

Well, it’s time to say goodbye to the pairing of Tor and Adam and thank them for everything they have delivered to this venue. Whether onto pastures new or taking a well-earned break, we wish them well and on tonight’s evidence they are leaving on a high.

So, the Post/Christmas Blues have now subsided as we hit February with an absolute banger of a show at 60 Million Postcards with a stellar line-up. First on stage are local Bournemouth Trio Plastic Gold a Punk band in attitude with a notable Seattle sound vein running through them.

There is quite a sizeable following here to see them and loud cheers are forthcoming as the band start with their opening number “Rabbit Hole”. Kip Drewson on drums attacks the kit with a purpose, who along with bassist Cayton Francis provides some imaginative rhythms. Vocalist and guitarist Dylan Phillips shows his worth with some creative guitar soundscapes and a powerfully delivered vocal drawl.

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The band’s pro-active attitude has gifted them with a host of notable gigs, and the band who only formed a few years back are now making big strides with their performance and creativity. With songs like Grunge-infused “Charade” and a brand new yet untitled song, they show their fulfilment is blossoming. The trio end on their fourth-coming single “Insomnia” and tonight’s home crowd show plenty of appreciation to this fine local act.

Next up are Chig. The name is familiar in local music circles, but I have yet to witness the live performance. They take to the stage with little fuss and open with “Vicodin” and immediately one is transported back to the Shoegaze heyday with a sound not unlike Slowdive. And as the set progresses the influences don’t end there. The guitars are forged in leanings to Nowhere-era Ride while I detect more than a nod to Sugarcubes-era Bjork in the vocal. That vocal it must be said is largely inaudible, but that may just be the point.

But there is no doubting the power generated by this quintet. While stage space is in short supply, I would suggest the strikingly good-looking bassist is moved to the front at future shows, his Lost Boys attire and Peter Hook stagecraft needs to be seen and heard. On “Feel” I’m immediately reminded of Post/HCX underachievers Vex Red as the set becomes broodier and heavier. Crossing from Nu Gaze (Shoegaze) into Post/HCX is quite a feat, but they achieve it admirably.

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The bludgeoning drums just get louder and heavier before another genre swap, “Dirty Pretty Places” comes across all Kate-Jane Garside (Daisy Chainsaw) on us as the guitar wizardry and stagecraft hits a new orbit. They depart us on “Joy”, which for a first this performance has been. With a little more experimentation and a more audible vocal Chig could be onto something wonderful, but for now we can wallow in a moment where we witnessed them on a smaller stage in an intimate setting. One’s to watch…..

So, King Nun is a new band to me. I have done my homework, watched a few videos on YouTube and made my mind up that this is a band I want to see live. Once again, our headliners take to the stage with little fuss as a large Postcards crowd edge nearer the stage. They open with “Golden Age” and immediately I am transfixed with this band. Strong vocals, stagecraft, powerhouse drumming, guitar intricacies, they have it all – in spades!! “Selfish” follows as they breeze into their set.

Billed as an Indie/Punk hybrid I would favour more a refined Melodic/Grunge – is that even a genre? Well, it is now! “Do You Know Where You Are?” yes, we certainly do! ‘Theo’ (lead vocals/guitar) is a consummate showman with the stagecraft to match. His vocal in the main is clear and audible, while occasional crowd/band participation is encouraged.

James (guitar) to his right is chief shapeshifter, offering occasional vocal accompaniment, while the youthful looking ‘Caius’ (drums) stokes the fire in the engine room. Nathan (bass) is somewhat hidden at the rear, but no less important. I really am struggling for a point of reference or obvious influences and can only offer a nod to Brian Molko (Placebo) in Theo’s vocals. I guess what I am enjoying most is that rare gem – a band (new to me) who sound like nothing I have heard previously. I’ve clearly caught the King Nun “Bug” (see what I did there?!

Many bands have come along and headlined this very stage offering little more than a forty-minute set. Not these guys – they are here for the long haul with a 16-song set. “Sinking Feeling” comes mid set but it’s latterly where they up the ante. One or two compositions take a more melodic turn, but they soon return with the power. “Escapism”, their penultimate song sets us up nicely for what is their final number “Greasy Hotel” – I’ll hazard a guess that this was written from experience? Nevertheless, the band venture into the crowd while encouraging participation – which is promptly accepted.

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They try to leave the stage, but with no obvious route to their green room the cries of “one more song” keep them on stage. “Chinese Medicine” is their encore song which provokes a mini mosh pit and they stick around to give us one more cut in the shape of “But We Live on The Beach” – somewhat apt in a seaside town!

To witness a band with this talent, this energy and stagecraft on a small stage in Bournemouth doesn’t happen every week. The last show I witnessed of this magnitude was from Irish noiseniks Thumper, who have moved on to bigger things. Time will only tell but I believe King Nun won’t be playing smaller stages for too much longer, we will see…..

King Nun
Golden Age
Do You Know Where You Are?
Heavenly She Comes
Family Portrait
Sinking Feeling
I Must Be Struck by Lightning to Fly
Fig 8
After All
Hung Around
Greasy Hotel
Chinese Medicine
But We Live on The Beach

So Long
Main Character
If I Was
Dead Pretty Places

Plastic Gold
Rabbit Hole
Only You
New Song



Article by Ross A. Ferrone
Media & Additional Text by David Chinery (Chinners)
Photography by Matthew Rayner

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