With festivals, live events and just about everything else being shut down across the world, many of us are no doubt missing live music. Never has not paying over £4.00 for a flat Carling been so missed…
With that, I’ve been down the rabbit hole across YouTube of some immense live sets over the last few years, and across a number of features, I’ll be posting some of the finest live sets for you to check out during the era of social distancing.
Of course, there is no way it replicate the same feeling as being in your local grassroots venue or standing in a sun-baked (or rain-soaked if you live in the UK) field with pals, but nonetheless, get out the tinnies, boxes of wine, cider, whiskey or whatever your drink of choice, turn up the volume and sit back in your living room, kitchen, bedroom, garden, balcony or whatever and watch 16 astounding live sets and help fill that void of live music.
Super fun, psychedelic-cumbia sounds, the London-based Los Bitchos are the band we need right now. If you dig their KEXP session above, then France TV have an even longer set from Los Bitchos’ set at Trans Musicales de Rennes here.
A recent face and mind-melting rehearsal from Oh Sees who are quite possibly the greatest live band in any universe in any possible dimension.
The Netherlands outfit YĪN YĪN are an onslaught of joyous psychedelic-funk with heavy Eastern Asian influences. Get to know YĪN YĪN below…
Netherlands psychedelic outfit Altin Gün who play a cauldron of Turkish psychedelic classics – in the best way possible are one of the most ridiculous live bands in the world. I wrote about them at La Route Du Rock too here if you fancy a read about how great they were back then but the footage below should be suffice.
Melt Dunes have sadly seemed to have called it a day but before they left us, they were one of the mightiest live bands in the world. Not long before the called it a day, they featured on Fuzz Club’s compilation, supported The Brian Jonestown Massacre and toured mainland Europe, taking their cataclysmic assault of psychedelia, space-rock and krautrock far and wide.
The Mauskovic Dance Band
Psych, cumbia and disco all sounding like it’s from out of space, Netherlands’ The Mauskovic Dance Band are a crazy-fun experience and are perfect for beers during the summer days and nights.
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
What more can be said about Melbourne’s 7-piece psychedelic-merchants? One of the finest live bands today, the prolific outfit are always an absolute brain-eating tour-de-force.
SONS are a raucous riff-riot of psychedelic-space rock and garage-rock. Akin to Oh Sees and King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, SONS are utterly explosive and quite possibly one the most underrated bands around today.
Glitched-out krautrock and wonky post-punk, there aren’t many bands out there that are as sonically charged, or as fun as London’s feral, anthropomorphic tree people Snapped Ankles.
The tale of Niger’s desert-rock, psychedelic guitar wizard Mdou Moctar is pretty remarkable. Coming from a strict background and also not having the means to buy a guitar, Mdou Moctar self-taught himself guitar after building his own out of wood and using brake wires from old bicycles for strings.
THE PARADISE BANGKOK MOLAM INTERNATIONAL BAND
Danceable hypnotic Thai-roots party band. If you can’t find any joy from The Paradise Bangkok Molam International Band then you might well be entirely lost.
Featuring former members of Thee Commons, Los Angeles’ Tropa Magica blend their brand of cumbia with frenetic, garage-rock and surf-punk. Here they are in session also talking in depth about the origins of the band.
One of the finest new-ish live bands, New York’s The Wants delve between art-rock, post-punk, gothic-rock, electronica and the motorik-pulse of krautrock. Gloriously gloom, If The Wants are not on your radar yet, get involved right now.
Stockholm’s Viagra Boys live show is absolute relentless visceral sonic-storm. Utterly exhilarating, murky post-punk mixed with garage-punk, Viagra Boys are a melting pot of Fat White Family mixed with The Garden.
London based, Japanese psychedelic warlords Bo Ningen are easily one of the best live acts around. Mind-melting, heavy space-rock, Bo Ningen will have you thrown far into the deepest depths of the cosmos before dropping you down to Earth at light speed.
Anemone are a Montreal quintet that are utter bliss with their jangly, sun-kissed psychedelic-pop. The outfit named after The Brian Jonestown’s classic also produced one of the most underrated albums of 2019 last year with ‘Beat My Distance’.
So there you have it – 16 live sets that will hopefully keep you busy during this time of isolation. If you dig what you hear, then be sure to keep an eye out on all these acts for when they’re back touring again, and if in the event you can spare any change in these hard times, maybe grab some merch.