The Garden, Pinact, Manuscripts at Broadcast, 11/8/14

Only playing their fourth gig you wouldn’t say Manuscripts are lacking any confidence by the way they charge through their set, at times it sounds like something off a Youth Of Today 7”, and at times it sounds like Bob Mould, what’s not to like really?

They’ve got a knack for a great melody and good songs to build on and they finish with you curious and wanting more… watch this space.

Pinact are fresh out the studio from recording their new album and the new songs that start the set sounded promising, the opener is impressive, showing signs of a more meditative side to this loud but saccharine band.

Tearing through some older material in their usual enthusiastic manner, it’s clear to see the recent tour has crafted a sharp set, which closes on a quick and wild instrumental, we look forward to seeing more of the same frenetic performances in the near future.

If you have read anything about The Garden, seen any of their sometimes considerably short and peculiar music videos, or heard about the twin’s brief stint on the catwalk for Saint Laurent, even then you really wouldn’t know what to expect seeing the LA two piece for the first time.

We are introduced to about five songs every 10 minutes as the band serve up their Cramps vortex of no bass, all pulsating drums, all fuzzed and echoed, here as we look and listen to something akin to snippets of another world; songs musing on subjects as a blade of grass, being women (in addition to being handsome and tall identical twins) and more musings from their alternate reality; it is a hugely entertaining affair.

Events never seem to be brought to a pause as the twins roar through warped garage punk, with no one able to quite predict when the song will come abruptly (but by no means forced) to an end.

It’s all on point, nothing seems to out of place, and when both brothers ditch the instruments to run around barking and shrieking into microphones, it becomes nothing short of a full spectacle, Wyatt Shears continues the quick fire hysterics in his delivery as his brother, Fletcher, runs around on the stage behind him, alternating between crouching and hiding to jumping around manically and sharing vocal duties over twisted trap hip hop beats.

No second is wasted, no gesticulation not made by The Garden, and no one can predict what’s going to happen next, the instruments are taken up again as the set continues with the songs varied in their own little ways as high end bass licks punch in over rocking beats

They ooze that unique oddness, dripping with absurdity, knowing their performance inside out, but surprisingly there’s no element of put on pretension here.

The band are all smiles, clearly enjoying themselves as the crowd grow warmer and warmer as the set goes on and end on the fantastic ‘We Be Grindin’, moving some of the crowd to dance and get into the spirit of things, but mostly people are just stunned.

One punter turns to me and claims it’s “the weirdest thing he’s ever seen”, of any opinions shared between the goers tonight, no doubt the act will prove to be divisive; it’s just in their nature to be so.

What no one can claim is that they were boring or predictable, or lacking in musicality, and certainly they couldn’t claim that the two turn up short in the art of performance.

To say they are authentic may be making too many distinctions, but right here we get to see something akin to the real deal: unhinged but proficient and rehearsed, sporadic but choreographed, eclectic but not quite impenetrable – just identical twins spouting their scorched out Dadaism, spewing cranked out garage underworld tunes at a breakneck speed, delivering it all with such admirable zest, endearing to the end.

More Photos

Words: Matthew Thomas
Photos: Warrick Beyers


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