Bristol has been the breeding ground for many a musical movement over the years, from 90’s trip-hop through to its current, prominent wave of post-rock. For me though one of the most interesting sub-genres that seems to be slowly coalescing is formed at a point where garage rock and electro-pop are colliding head on. Already aware of the wonderful New York, no-wave distortions of Candy Darling and the industrial, grunge-goth of Nasty Little Lonely, I can now add to that small movement, the man who goes by the name of Charlton Lane.
Taking hypnotic and claustrophobic beats as a frame he adds jagged garage guitars, scuzzy punked out blues riffs and krautrock experimentation and the result is a gonzoid, splatter-gun take on electro voodoo blues, driven by deep grooves and programmed beats. And it’s glorious. Glorious in it’s ambition, its audaciousness, the way that it finds the coolest musical references from disparate parts of the musical canon and throws them all together to see what holds tight (and then uses a metaphorical hammer to force the rest into it’s designated place.)
As a one man outfit, I’m not sure how this translates to the live show, but then just look at the musical approach of Vienna Ditto and the things you can do with a pile of home made electronic kit, a roll of gaffer tape and a strange musical vision. Even if the full force of the recordings fail to materialise in the live arena, I have a suspicion that Charlton Lane’s failings would still be a much better prospect that many bands runaway successes.