hello, we’re the scientists. second support that is – if you look up on the merch stand it says “second support” – that’s just a sort of a discreet way of saying we’ve got merch for you to buy
what an australian introduction! said with such beautiful low-end tones from one kim salmon. a tiny power driven package. here is a fantastic catalogue of songs from across the years of the scientists, performed while supporting mudhoney at the shepherd’s bush empire in london. a place they spent quite some time in back in the 1980s.
2008. atp don’t look back. sonic youth. the standout? the scientists performing blood red river in light rain. of course, they were billed as the support act (again), and yet they pre-emptively tore shreds off their american contemporaries. nothing i ever heard come out of sonic youth approached anywhere near the blood-curdling punk rock brilliance of kimbo and co.
in all honesty, i spent the better part of the mid to late 1990s thinking kim salmon was a bit of a lounge singer akin/in parallel to dave graney (and they are indeed connected). this was not having ever been exposed to the places and people who knew what the scientists were, or even the beasts of bourbon. in fact, things started to click into place when i saw some of the latter’s videos on rage late at night as the fire burned low and the chill set in. tex perkins in that incarnation freaked the crap out of me. but there in the background was kim, playing a truly distinct guitar style.
i don’t know why it’s hard to explain this music. its discovery for me was essentially at that atp show. it was a moment i looked up at the stage, feeling like i should have known how great they were a long time ago. i mean, they formed the year i was born, so there would always be a limit to when i might stumble head long into it.
the noise. the rock. the scream. the sinister countervailing spoken lyrics. the bass. the vague dirtiness. the surfer twang and rhythm.
in other news, it seems to make my cats go crazy. fair play.
six strings in one song