Mushi Mushi and The Guessmen, 9th October 2005

Mushi Mushi were kept on their toes with revelatory set of bone machine disco by support act The Guessmen for this show at The Cluny, Newcastle Upon Tyne.

The Guessmen merged so many influences into their songs that it was hard to keep to track of what was going on beyond knowing instinctively that it was great. Playing pure pop built on off-kilter beats and bizarre laptop-derived sounds they managed to keep the music just within the boundaries of pop. Constantly adjusting his fedora the frontman growled, sang and crooned his way to being an entertaining and natural mix of cheeky crowd pleaser and stamping blues and stout soaked troubadour. While he turned his hand to both loudhailer and trumpet, the guy on laptop (and clarinet) and the knob twiddling keyboardist threw themselves into the performance with enthusiastic vocodered backing vocals.

Following this set wasn’t a task many acts would relish but Mushi Mushi threw themselves headlong into their tight rhythm based electronic punk funk performance. Coming straight out of the gate with a barrage of live drumming and broken techno sounds they fiercely ran through a selection of toughened up tracks that retained a punchier edge than their recorded material. With occasional live bass and guitar playing their part alongside the drums the band rode bronco over their action cinema mini soundtrack themes pushing the music through a filter of electro and big beat. Mixing up their staple instrumental tracks with a very capable female vocalist and some shouty male vocals they played music aimed firmly at the dancefloor that stampeded from harsh to elastic grooves putting other similarly styled bands to shame for their lack of energy, melodies and vision.