DNA Café, Brussels
2nd December 2011
The rich, intense blend of guitars and bass draw you into that deep comfort zone of nothingness. Visually, think of the 'Perfect Day' scene in Trainspotting with the wellbeing and contentment of sinking into the carpet on heroin and being lost to all. OK - let's snap out of initial impressions here...
The sound is excellent. The band know it. They are rising to the occasion. I really haven't heard guitars that intensely blended together since my first proper Sonic Youth experience about 3 years ago. And it's consistent throughout the set, which goes roughly from Lennonesque doom-laden ballads to almost pure vociferous nuttery worthy of an apo(ca)li(p)tical Clash. All within that total comfort zone of the sound.
Even an aggressive up-tempo track like Blind Night is smooth as dark, bitter chocolate. And the place is quiet between songs. An indication that I'm not the only one here who's completely captivated.
Now, if you're going to go to the extent of fan worship as to set up a group that not only shares half its bandname with Sonic Youth but also sports a frontman with a T-shirt with a motif similar to Lee Ronaldo's amp, then quite frankly, you're asking for a ribbing. I mean everyone quotes Sonic Youth as an influence now-a-days. But with Subsonic Hornet, there's more. Not just influence, but understanding. And it's deep. Personal. Intentional. Emotional.
Ronan Collot, the sort of brains behind the band, had started letting snippets out 2-3 years ago, including some rather enticing videos and demos where he's played (or programmed / shot / mixed) everything himself. A good half of the people here in the DNA tonight have heard some of that material and are here eager to finally see the do done. "Good tunes, lots of variety, very well held together, damned good sound" , said one regular pundit who'd ended up here by accident. But the punters who've heard the stuff before are universally in awe at how much better and more effective the band (Nico from Garner - Guitar, Elise from Perverted by Language - Bass, Céderic from Monsoon, etc. - drums) are. No - effective is the wrong word. It goes way beyond.
I've never seen anyone go so close on their first full gig. Or getting through it so convincingly.
Listen on Bandcamp: http://subsonichornet.bandcamp.com/