KEYS / SOCK | LIVE REVIEW
CULTVR Lab, Cardiff, Sat 29 Feb
A combination of shape-shifting visuals alongside ambient psychedelic rock and cosmic compositions made this gig at CULTVR Lab feel like Cardiff finding a new beat in the music scene.
Setting the mood for the night are one of Wales’ best kept secrets, Sock. Always giving the crowd space to warm up, the four-piece blend charming ethereal percussion with wonky melodies which tonight are accompanied by swirls of fluorescent lava projected above our heads. They played some old tracks, and treated us to some new delights.
Even after being together for just over two years, Sock feel like a band that have defined who they are and that is especially apparent in their EP, Fresh Bits. That they sound as good on record as they do live makes you want to sit back, relax, smoke a cigarette and sway. And indeed, shortly after they took to the stage someone from the venue lays down a patch of fake grass and throws a pile of pillows on top to get everyone to do just that, minus the smoking bit. This changed the whole vibe of the show with people taking it in turns to lie beneath the kaleidoscopic wonders whilst listening to cosmically jazzy guitar.
Bringing their progressive and experimental sound to the night, Keys worked meticulously to slowly bring up the vibe of the room. They took us on a journey through time and space, adjusting the tempo of each track; in a live setting, Keys truly are great musicians, doubling up on drummers and going full throttle with sickening guitar solos, and raspy vocals to make your knees weak. These guys have been riding the Welsh music scene for some time now, and their essence of timeless rock’n’roll shows no signs of waning. All in all, this was one of the most encapsulating gig experiences I’ve had so far.
words SARAH MORGAN photos ANTHONY CONWAY