I posted this tweet immediately upon leaving the Trinity Centre, I could have ended this review there and it would told you all you need to know about the evening.
Using vintage equipment (Omnichord!), tape loops and custom pressed vinyl beats Jane Weaver recreated new interpretations of her recent back catalogue in front of our very eyes and ears.Like a Lego master builder she added layer upon layer to construct beautiful, haunting soundscapes. Zoetropic images as a backdrop only added depth to the sensory world she was conjuring.
This was a brave venture to embark upon, the fragility of one person trying to organise all these disparate sounds into a coherent whole was evident. One slip up at any point and everything could fall into chaos. The fact that she was using vinyl to lay the underbelly of each song just heightened this peril. Each click and pop heard as she placed the needle on the disc to begin her aural assemblages reminding me of the fine line which she unerringly walked.
Skipping between her three “workstations” Weaver meticulously created each track. It was a wondrous thing to see her cueing up the vinyl to start each one. Next, to the looping station, manufacturing tiny nuances that fill the gaps and make these songs whole. Finally, once her solid groundwork was complete, adding the live musical and vocal toppings to her kaleidoscopic recreations.
The source material for tonight’s music has its own beauty but tonight’s interpretations take on a life of their own. Pared back versions of songs, alongside Weaver’s gossamer like vocals, are ethereal and sensual. There is a vulnerability to these offerings. With songs of the true nature of existence and fantastical fairy-tale like stories, she is alone and is leading us on a journey. We accompany her willingly through these intimate renditions that are staggeringly beautiful and a joy to behold.
That’s not to say the show was all light and delicate, other tracks build and build, sometimes surpassing their parent song in depth and impact. Heavy repetitive bass lines coupled with motorik drumbeats creating a blissful heaviness that was all encompassing. The visual accompaniment came into its own during these excursions, adding to the experience. The apparent repetitiveness of the music seems at odds with the ever changing graphics presented to us, then you start noticing the small, constant variations in the music, everything was changing but also staying the same. Her vocals, while still beautiful, are more urgent and corporeal, bringing these songs into the here and now, grabbing your attention and keeping hold. All of these elements combined to create a trippy, gloriously intense ride.
As I posted in my tweet, this show took courage, inventiveness and no end of skill to produce, all qualities exhibited in abundance. A truly fantastic night.