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Arkayan

Arkayan

Approaching Oppposite/Midnight Boulevard

YaYa’s

Friday, March 7th, 2014

 

Some Friday nights are just quiet. But very few are both quiet and loud at the same time. Ear-deafening loud. Because that just about sums up what was offered on the night to the few die-hard fellows out there who came down to listen to raw, unpretentious rock that harkens back to the sounds of yesteryear.

Warming up the stage and opening the gig were newcomers Approaching Opposite. They didn’t leave much on the banter, or spend a lot of time on lyrics,  preferring to let their instruments do the talking with overly loud thrashing of the drums and enthusiastic guitar riffs coming in bursts in between the short time dedicated to lyrics. The sound quality of their set was slightly distorted owing to the overly high feedback and they came off the stage as quickly as they came on.

Up next were Midnight Boulevard, who were the complete reverse, putting the vocals on centre stage and using the instruments back it up. The vocals slightly veered off into screaming territory but not quite there, at times clear and others not so. There’s also a little bit of variety in their music so as to not keep things a tedious affair. However, at the crux of it, they simply sound good. High fidelity all the way, and each track has a catchy hook that makes it stand out from another song. Later on in their set they brought in a guest vocalist who, to be frank, was awesome, contorting his appendages enthusiastically with a voice that sounds a little like Creed.

Arkayan then emerged. Their seasoned ensemble tempered the youthful enthusiasm of the supporting acts, bringing down a lower tempo but nonetheless ear-deafening set, inspired by punk, metal and old-fashioned rock. But after a while they can get a bit repetitive and tedious to listen to. They had the appreciation of the small crowd with them, most of it based around somewhat sexually suggestive tweets in the bar’s live feed. Their lead vocalist has a voice that could raise testosterone levels within the vicinity, balanced out by a female backing vocalist. Then suddenly they switched from a metal sound and transformed into a folk set, swapping out the electric for the acoustic and also the didgeridoo made an appearance. After the short interregnum of this transformation, they went back straight to the thrashing and the strumming for the rest of the show.

 

CLAYTON LIN

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