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O., Yes Basement. 22nd February 2024

Updated: Feb 23

Two people banging out avant guard hardcore jazz on drums and a massive baritone saxophone may not sound like everyone’s cup of tea. But it should be and it’s certainly mine. This is the crazy sound which O. unleash on Yes’ delightful Basement space on a cold wet Thursday night in Manchester. There’s enough people in the room for me not to regret leaving my coat in the car and it’s a nice mix. A good smattering of the old guard and the fresh faced. O. are clearly a band that appeal across the board. They tell us it’s the first sold out night on their debut headline tour which is lovely to hear. Manchester will look after you. The quiet moments in the set you can hear a pin drop, it’s melodic and contemplative,  before the effects wired to the sax kick in and the place goes batshit. It’s creates a wonderful throbbing wobble and the heads of everyone in the room respond in unison, I looks wonderful. It sounds wonderful too, like a party of ocean liner fog horns making sweet love. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it really is unique and the sound of the sax hitting the low processed notes sounds like they could redirect the tides. Along with the freeform jazz, expect hefty doses of ska, dub and space rock. If you stumbled into a road side bar in a post apocalyptic desert in a thousand years (or maybe next year at this rate), this is it what you’d hear. There’s no vocal, just a sax sounding like nothing I’ve heard before, loops and some amazing drums holding it all together. Whenever they break, there’s a chorus of whoops and cheers, before the craziness kicks in again and the room goes wild. There’s a bloke down the front moshing like his got a live cable up his arse and the bloke in front of me is going at it like we’re in a rave. Me I’m sticking to my favoured head bobbing but you’ve gotta watch out for those key changes this pair will keep you on your toes! I was expecting to be blown away but they sound absolutely monumental trapped in this small space. It’s incredible and I leave with some new vinyl under my arm for the first time this year, the mark of a fantastic gig.


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