Knifeworld at The Lexington, London - live review
Venue: The Lexington, London
Knifeworld: plugged and unplugged
When Knifeworld played this venue in 2014, it was off the back of signing to InsideOut and releasing second album The Unravelling. That gig was rammed to capacity, so it’s no surprise that tonight has been sold out for weeks in advance.
This ‘evening with Knifeworld’ will feature two sets, one acoustic and one electric. Feel The Sorcery opens the acoustic set in upbeat fashion, and introduces a brace of tracks from 2016’s meditation on death, Bottled Out Of Eden. Foul Temple is achingly poignant, the three-piece wind and brass section harmonising a plaintive last post for the newly departed.
Frontman Kavus Torabi displays an effortless Adrian Belew-like facility in vocalising while nailing the tricksy guitar arpeggios in Lowered Into Necromancy. Like the latter incarnations of King Crimson, having an octet at your disposal opens up all manner of possibilities for arrangement. Where that succeeds most is in the chamber/jazz orchestration of A Dream About A Dream and The Skulls We Buried Have Regrown Their Eyes. Staccato blasts from the woodwinds and discordant repeating piano figures recall such avant-garde greats as Steve Reich and John Zorn. A mightily impressive feat, but then Knifeworld aren’t your typical prog outfit.