cone magazine

Review: Ulrika Spacek – Start The Bus


After having released an impressive debut record in January, London’s five piece noise rock outfit Ulrika Spacek show no signs of stopping the shows, as Start The Bus hosted them for the second time this year in another free performance.

The Album Paranoia, released on London’s Tough Love records, brought 2016 in with a triumphant and well-needed bang. The ever-growing indie sound seems to be spreading at an exponential rate, but Ulrika Spacek cut through the flat noise with their debut, offering 9 unforgiving tracks that stand strong alone, and even stronger as a set. It carries a certain degree of nostalgia, draping soft, fragile vocals over multiple guitar licks, but also gives riff-hungry listeners something to sink their teeth into.

Start The Bus had the pleasure of hosting the five piece for the second time, as they get the ball rolling on a UK/EU tour that’ll take them through France, Switzerland and Italy. The appear like a band well-rehearsed and well-versed, but not at all tired and enjoying the humble reception. Still struggling to fit on stage among multiple pedal boards and guitars, they possess a tightness that could only be acquired through extensive playing. ‘Beta Male’ kicked the night off, showcasing the group’s infectious three-way guitar play in perfect light. The bassist and drummer work closely together to provide the hypnotic pulse that drives these compositions, and little room was left between songs for talking.

The hour-long performance was essentially a live rendition of The Album Paranoia. From the heavy, Dead Meadow style riffs of Nk, to the soft story-telling of Airportism, they move between light and dark textures with the gusto of a band 3 albums in. With the vocals intentionally laying low in the mix (perhaps a little too low ), the performance acts more as a canvass to explore varying guitar textures rather than a series of hits you can sing along to. The only downside, if any, was that a lover of the album could predict what was coming at each turn. Considering their perceived competence, perhaps they could’ve deviated from the blueprint just a little.

Catch Ulrika Spacek at the following locations this autumn:

Sep 27th – UK, London, Electrowerkz
Sep 28th – France, Paris, Point Ephemere
Sep 29th – France, Lyon, Le Sonic
Sep 30th – Switzerland, Luzern, Sudpol
Oct 1st – Italy, Ancona, Loop Club
Oct 2nd – Italy, Rome, Psych Fest @ Monk Club
Oct 4th – Switzerland, Zurich, Zukunft
Oct 6th – Germany, Berlin, ACUD
Oct 7th – Germany, Hamburg, Grüner Jäger
Oct 8th – Denmark, Copenhagen, Stengade
Oct 10th – Netherlands, Amsterdam, Paradiso Noord
Oct 11th – Germany, Cologne, King George
Oct 12th – UK, Brighton, Green Door Store
Oct 13th – UK, Manchester, Soup Kitchen
Oct 14th – UK, York, The Fulford Arms
Oct 15th – UK, Leicester, What Became of Us @ the Cookie
Oct 16th – UK, Glasgow, The Hug & Pint
Oct 17th – UK, Newcastle, Cluny 2
Oct 22nd – UK, Birmingham, All Year’s leaving @ Hare & Hounds
Nov 3rd – France, Nantes, Lieu Unique
Nov 4th – France, Lorient, Les Indisciplinés @ Le Manège


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