Almost exactly three years to the day after catching my eye supporting fellow indie rockers Circa Waves at Newcastle’s Riverside, Hackney-based outfit Gengahr were back in the North East, this time taking over Think Tank? in Newcastle’s Times Square.
After brilliant supporting sets from London-based alt quartet Indigo Husk and Oxford’s own electric pop four-piece Low Island, it was finally time for Gengahr to take the stage.
Crowd favourites such as ‘She’s a Witch’ and ‘Bathed in Light’ were met with a great roar of excitement – as expected, yet the response in the aftermath of new tracks such as ‘Carrion’ and ‘Mallory’ suggest that they too are set to join Gengahr’s expanding list of psych dream pop hits.
Touring on the back of recent success with the release of their latest studio album, ‘Where Wildness Grows’, fans waited eagerly in anticipation for their return to the North East and they did not disappoint; this was a flawless performance of a set that is maturing over the years into a seasoned set of tracks ideal for the intimate live setting.
Whilst I am a fan of their music, my only criticism of Gengahr does not relate to their live performances but rather with their seemingly stagnant songwriting. I truly believe their material is improving, yet to me, both LPs sound remarkably similar; with the possible exception of ‘Carrion’ (a track from ‘Where Wildness Grows’), that progressively exhilarates both live and on the record.
Sure, they are a band I’d recommend to friends, as I have done, but will they be blown away by them? Probably not. Either way, I sincerely believe their contribution to the UK indie scene is, if anything, seriously underappreciated.
Yes, Gengahr won’t be selling out stadiums anytime soon but I don’t think that was ever to be expected. They are a great live band with indulgent hooks drenched in effortless dreamy melodic vibes.