It was really bloody strange seeing prot0type live in my home town.
And while all the usual bits were there – savage beats, raging vocals, equipment abuse (the microphone at least came in for a battering) – something really wasn’t quite right. For the first few songs at least, Nick simply didn’t appear like he was into it at all.
As the mic began to intermittently cut out, the rage began to build and suddenly, for a while at least, things seemed ok again: I Hate You was filled with malevolence and spite, and closer Reject (Your Life) was powerful in similar ways. But as that song finished, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone so relieved to have left the stage. prot0type gigs are usually much better than this: off nights do happen, though, and this looked to be one of those.
No such problems for Autoclav 1.1, with Tony looking fired up and ready to go from the off. The driving, glitchy beats of This Is Untitled is always a good opener, and it simply burst out of the speakers. Perhaps the most interesting tracks from the set were the two most obvious new ones – one a stomping, guitar-sampling throwback to 90s-style WaxTrax! industrial (and it was fucking ace, too), the other a punishing storm of beats that was way heavier than anything yet released under this name. The difference was made only made more stark by the airing of some of the more mellow stuff from recent albums, which floated along gently but didn’t really seem to engage a lot of the crowd at points. There was, of course, the traditional set-closer in the cover of Theme From S-Express, which as always engaged everyone and went down a storm. A recorded version, which has been previously discussed, really needs to happen: it would make a killer dancefloor track, as the original does! One result of this gig is that it makes the prospect of the forthcoming third album ever more enticing: there are new ideas and directions aplenty, and not only will it enhance the sound, it may yet open up the sound to people who may not have paid attention before.