black midi Pummels Birmingham With Cavalcade

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British prog-punks black midi landed at Saturn in Birmingham, AL this week as a part of their tour behind their sophomore record Cavalcade. We caught the band at Pitchfork Fest last month and immediately knew that the band was not to be missed in the small confines of a club — their multi-genre tenacity combined with the absurdity of lead singer Geordie Greep’s vocal delivery and lyrical musings has made them a niche and can’t-miss live act.

Their set at Saturn confirmed what we already knew — this band does not fuck around. After a last-minute cancellation of opener Orange Tree Boys‘ set (whose whole existence is very mysterious), the band came on to begin with “953” off of their debut album schlagenheim. From there, it was a tour de force with each member’s individual strengths highlighted and combined to create the pummeling entity that is black midi. Drummer Morgan Simpson makes you forget about any other drummer in the music industry; his ability to alternate between harsh, ear-deafening rhythms to lighter, jazzier fare when the band demands it is unparalleled among anyone I’ve ever seen. This band plays every show as if it’s the last one they’re going to play, with improvisation reigning supreme to the point where songs were stretched out to nearly-seven-minute lengths. The band didn’t focus on much of the new album or schlagenheim — instead, the crowd was treated to a set of almost entirely new material that is going to wreck listeners once it’s finally released. Check out our photo coverage from this insane set below:

 

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