20 January 2011

Right Hand Left Hand

I’ve been meaning to post about these for quite a long time but, as usual, I somehow never got around to it. Right Hand Left Hand are one of Cardiff’s most exhilarating, interesting, and quite simply impressive bands at the moment, and should have been an obvious choice for me to write about here months ago, to be honest.

Formed of two veterans of the Cardiff music scene – Rhodri Viney, who has been credited as a member or musician (or whatever) on albums so many times it’d be difficult to keep count (but some that pop to my mind now include ex-Boo Radley songwriter Martin Carr, experimental folk-y/krauter H. Hawkline, post-rockers Vito and who also runs solo project Ratatosk, and Andrew ‘Bernie’ Plain, who joins Rhodri in Vito, also played with Martin Carr, was in Curveside, and also helps to run Cardiff music hub Music Box and h - Right Hand Left Hand sounds more like the work of six musicians than two, making really impressive use of looping pedals that works brilliantly on record, but that creates a truly dumbfounding and stunning live experience.

What starts out as a singular guitar riff on the bassier top strings is gradually added to, layer by layer, until the music is of massive complex, math-y guitar work scale, all while the drums are technically (but still brutally) smashed into a frenzy. There’s even some instrument swapping and now I think they even include some double drumming, just to make you truly sick with envy.

They’ve been a bit quiet as of late, but I’ve been told that a full-length album is in the pipelines - though there are no firm details as of yet. Until then, you can see if you can get your hands on either of the discs that Right Hand Left Hand appear one for Cardiff label Barely Regal - the Zero Years of Barely Regal compilation, or their free Swn Festival mix – or, for now, just listen to two tracks below. Do see them live whenever you get the opportunity, though.

Right Hand Left Hand - Stanislav Petrov

Right Hand Left Hand - Harry Powell

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