The Brudenell Social Club
Tonight John Darnielle is a pastor at his pulpit and the crowd his blindly lead followers and believers. Such is the conviction of his delivery and subsequent reception it receives, it really is to almost biblical proportions. Sweat drips from the mass of adoring foreheads and creates a tepid and stagnant air that makes you clasp for breath, but nobody even thinks about leaving. It’s far too engaging for that. As a three piece, tonight the band are on blistering form, while Darnielle also kills his solo set halfway through. The set-list is near perfect too, which is a nigh on impossible feat to achieve due to the quantity of songs the band possess and the fact that each period of their career has such devout followers it can be a task to please all ears. This is combated by dipping in and out of periods and albums in apple-bobbing fashion, and yet there remains an almost clinical sense of fluidity to the evening. Darnielle’s delivery fluctuates between ferocious, seething intensity to sweet, delicate whispers. An encore of ‘No Children’ followed by ‘The Best Ever Death Metal Band of Denton’ sees the screaming masses spew “I hope you die!” followed by “hail satan!” is searing unison. I wish going to regular church were more like this.
By Daniel Dylan Wray
Originally published in issue 21 (vol 3) of Loud And Quiet. September 2010