Tonight I went to a rock gig with the Edinburgh Uni Goth & Rock Society. They’re really nice people with a passion for music and a great sense of humour. I wished I had brought my earplugs because it was so loud, but it was great. There were other first-years there too and we swapped phone numbers. I met the society’s Grand Vizier, who jokingly introduced himself as “the Grand Vizier Self-Titled”. I love how they are much less serious than other Edinburgh uni societies.
When one of my new friends asked the organizer what was the name of “that big guy with long hair”, he said that didn’t really narrow it down. Some people there looked a bit scary, but they were really friendly. Despite the loud music, I could hear no worse than anyone else there, probably better than most, if they were regularly exposed to this decibel level without earplugs.
There were four different bands. The first sounded something like Guns ‘n’ Roses. The second group were a loud punk band. After than came screaming heavy metallers with garden gnome facial hair. The final band played industrial music. I hadn’t heard much industrial music before, but I liked this. The group I saw performing were kind of like the Prodigy meets Nine Inch Nails and Marilyn Manson. There was a woman in a black headdress behind a sound board, and two men, one singing and the other drumming. They were both smeared with black paint. It sounded stranger than most music but I’d definitely listen to it again. Industrial music is darker in colour than most music, because of the bass. The singing is distorted and so instead of the ordinary pinkish line of a voice, it’s a darker shade, sometimes white or yellow. Blue tinges for lower vocals. The shape of the singer’s voice was rippled and cut into slices midair by the electronic distortion and sometimes had a texture like 3-dimensional static from a TV screen. The bass was zigzaggy and the electronic backing more brightly colourful and beautiful. The undistorted electric tones were smoother, slightly glassy and transparent and bright, pure colours. Smooth, oval-like shapes. They were at the background of a stage-sized mass of distorted, grainy, zigzagging, spiky sound slamming out into the room. The drums gave it some more even, solid flattish pulses of colour, and the cymbals put gold into the mix from the side of the stage. It was unusual looking music, like standing inside a fireworks factory in the middle of an arson attack. Quite a night.