Blackacid - Manchester Roadhouse 7.5.087

Im sure if you dig out your old NME’s you’ll come across an old friend (in the loosest sense) who slipped unconsciously below radar, a sorta impish Liam Gallagher, almost a riddler in oasis fancy dress, no, its not Peter ‘I make belts’ Voss but the caricature that was Richard Fearless. Whether he made that name up (rumoured to be Richard Wimp) or not is beside the point, Fearless was once hailed master of the dance/dirge scene of the late 90’s with his Death in Vegas project.

At their height DIV were phenomenal, tracks like the Iggy fronted ‘Aisha’ and the baggy beat of ‘Dirt’ sound tracked a generation, tagging Fearless (and Holmes) as formidable and prolific song-writers. Things have been quiet of late, and it seems fearless (wimp) has ditched Holmes and the DIV moniker for some dirty space-rock in the form of Blackacid.

With Holmes booted, there’s space in Blackacid for a couple of other ‘freaks’ to tow. There’s the flopish hippy bassist and a regally moustachioed guitarist who both add depth to their image, and strike a stylish figure on the roadhouse ‘stage’.
Opening with the petulant stomp of ‘Here She Comes’ first impressions are a little underwhelming. Its loud, the vocals are petulant and reedy, and the track stinks of Primal Screams current faux pas.

Fearless always the conscious poser, more image than substance, emits a drawling howl like an Iggy with downs, it’s not punk but then what is? A witty little gobshite rhyming about Tesco’s? or a middle class cockney felcher screaming come on neeaaaaw in an American drawl? It is contrived and the antithesis of punk, and although the essence is missing the results are interesting at least.

When ‘Glitter in the Gutter’ appears, Blackacid’s first single, it sounds like a droney homage to Brian Jonestown Massacre, struggling under a thick depressive cloak until a Hammond refrain salvages an ounce of hope. But tonight’s shining light is ‘Savage Love’, which has a euphoric sense of a gravity and importance not unlike DIV’s finer moments.

It’s a contrived and messy return, one that is undoubtedly set against the cleaner pop sound of the present music scene. Blackacid on this performance will amount to little more than a stylish fad, but who knows what Fearless can achieve on record.
Daniel Pratley

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