1" Volcano Live Show Review By Drowned In Sound

"Like Cable covering Slayer"

I notice the guy in the Feeder t-shirt as soon as I walk in. He looks Scottish (I’m not sure how or why – perhaps I just have an eye for these things), so I instantly hope that he’s not a quarter of Dundee-based 1” Volcano, a band that only weeks ago pricked my ears up, and up, and up a little more with their single ‘Fields + Pressures’, released through the teeny Smalltown America label. I keep flicking my eyes over to his table whilst tonight’s support act, Dogs (I tried to pay as little attention as I could to their painfully generic indie rawk nonsense) ‘entertain’ the troops. Noting that my £3 bottle of warm Mexican beer has run dry, I head towards the bar, all the time twitching my head over my shoulder to check that Feeder guy isn’t lugging any equipment towards the ‘stage’ (for ‘stage’ read gap on the floor), and then… shit, I’ve lost him. Not to worry; there’s no way a band as exciting as 1” Volcano could count a Feeder fan amongst their ranks. Is there?

Oh shit. He’s up there, minutes later, ripping out a riff on his slightly-too-highly-slung guitar. Maybe he’s trying to cover that MASSIVE logo on his chest. Ah, fuck it, I’m past caring as soon as the four-piece rip into "Beast". It’s a song that swings between poppy verses (think Seafood) and a chorus that comes on like Cable covering Slayer, or Urusei Yatsura locked in a duel with some death metal band. Or something. It’s got teeth whatever, and they want blood. Unfortunately, it seems that much of tonight’s crowd were only in to see the awful Dogs, who despite their name lacked any kind of bite whatsoever. It’s their loss though, as a few songs later 1” Volcano are launching into "Fields + Pressures" like men possessed with the spirit of every awkward rock band of the last ten years. My girlfriend doesn’t like them though – she says they sound like lots of other bands. She does have a point, but 1” Volcano aren’t another carbon copy of The Strokes, The Hives, or even Oasis.

They plunder the back catalogues of the Pixies, Cable, Helmet, Shudder To Think and Fugazi, throw all the ingredients in a giant bowl at once, and produce a most delectable cake. Or pie. Or battered haggis. Rubbish food analogies aside, 1” Volcano play inspiring rock music that deserves a better audience than twenty or so may-as-well-be passers by (tonight’s show is free to whoever ventures down Colour’s precarious steps). I’d like to say that their first London show has been a success, but it hasn’t, at least in terms of label interest. Still, the upshot of the poor turnout means that they’ll have to come back and play an equally small venue, much to the delight of the likes of me. A&R men, watch this space – 1” Volcano are just about ready to explode/erupt/get really, really good.

- Michael Diver, Drowned In Sound