The Necks. Another Review

The Street Theatre, 19 February 2008

by Amy Dowler

When I found myself getting faintly excited as the three notes being played over and over by the double bassist went up an octave, I thought I was probably in trouble.” Perhaps, I began to think, worthy though I”m sure they are, the Necks aren”t for me.” About ten minutes later I began revising that judgement finding the particular music the trio had by that point meandered into pleasant, even lovely.” Not amazing, nothing to incite passion, but something with which I could imagine curling up in a warm, dimly lit room on a cold winter”s night with a glass of red.

As the music continued my thoughts began to drift and before I knew it I realised I had stopped listening for some time, that in this time the music had of course changed and that I no longer had any sort of reference point for what I was listening to.” Of course I could be blamed for allowing such a lapse in concentration, but the inaccessibility of the Necks” music once you have lost its thread, the meaningless of its parts without the context of the whole, is I think a failing.” It betrays the inherent linearity of their music, music that progresses – though slowly – inexorably, horizontally and always in the one direction.

What I find paradoxical about the Necks” music is that although the parts are meaningless when separated out from the whole, the whole somehow adds up to less than the sum of those parts.” There was a smattering of nice parts in both of the two sets on Tuesday night, but evidently they were not enough to keep me engaged: the set as a whole never lived up to these disconnected moments of pleasure.

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