So hip it hurts, Chain and the Gang haul up their angular, no-wave Washingon DC radicalism to Static Gallery. Parody or punk? It’s hard to tell with lead man Ian Svenonius – the man behind this, and a slew of other projects.

Discordant, darkly humorous and defiantly off-kilter, Chain and the Gang whip up a noise-pop brew that’s hard not to love. But you gotta be in the mood for it – and you’ve got to understand that this is as much ‘conceptual art project’ as ‘authentic, gigging band.’ And diatribes don’t always make for the catchiest of choruses.

Live Chops: They’re having fun, and doing things their way, there’s no denying that. So expect lengthy between-song diversions, musings and knotty lyrics to go with the garage rock. 6/10

Track Record: Conceptual bands always run the risk that the message overrides the music. With CATG it’s definitely a hit and miss affair. If he throws in gems from past projects, such as Nation of Ulysses, he’ll sugar the pill greatly. 5/10

Venue: We like the Static Gallery. Good sized room, dependable acoustics, great vibe. Thumbs up. 9/10

Supporting Acts: A healthy mix: The Publicist (aka funky electro merchant, Sebastian Thompson), Brazilian rock’n’rollers Black Drawing Chalks, Northern Ireland alt-rockers Collystrings, and the experimental sonic adventures of Catalonia’s Les Aus. 7/10

Chain and The Gang, Thursday May 19
Static Gallery, Liverpool
Sound City

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