- Garden Center
- Date: Wednesday 22/02/2023
- Time: 7.00pm
- Price: £9/£11
- Age Restrictions: 16+
- Venue: Clwb Ifor Bach
Ex-Vöid draw on guitar pop through the ages – The Byrds, Big Star, Teenage Fanclub – and attack it with the ferocity and economy of a hardcore punk band.
Bigger Than Before is the debut album from Ex-Vöid, the “dangerously melodic” pop group formed by Joanna Gruesome singers Lan McArdle and Owen Williams. Expanding on the “exuberant, hook-stuffed” (Pitchfork) compositions of their previous band, McArdle and Williams have written an album of solid gold power-punk tunes.
Even on more mellow numbers, the band have a way of pummeling the listener with an unhealthy quantity of hooks, harmonies and Thin Lizzy-inspired dual guitar solos.
Yet there’s also a delicacy to the vocal which brings to mind the eye-of-the-storm melodies of Bilinda Butcher which imbues the album with a kind of grounding ethereality. On tracks like lead single “Churchyard,” McArdle and Williams’ voices blend and trill with a folk-like quietness while, down in the grubby engine room, bandmates Laurie Foster (bass) and Jonny Coddington (drums) thrash their way through noise jams, hardcore breakdowns and open-chord power-pop riffs.