Avalanche Party at The Fulford Arms

On Saturday, The Fulford Arms celebrated five years of delivering the best live music in York. In was in these humble surroundings that Avalanche Party returned to help the Fulford venue celebrate. Joining them were a cavalcade of acts from York and further afield including Dense, Bull, Ravenous Hounds and Kieff.

Review by Graeme Smith

Photos by Andy Argyle

Kieff were already filling the room with noise when we arrived. Hailing from the Netherlands and currently on tour in Yorkshire and the North East, they created an impressive sound, one part ’60s psychedelic, one part shouty drone and one part modern experimental. They’re definitely for fans of early Pink Floyd or Animal Collective and I’d highly recommend getting down to see them while they’re in the UK.

Next up were Norwich’s Ravenous Hounds who proved somewhat genre-defying. Kicking things off with machine gun riffs and belting, bloodcurdling vocals, they switched up their style in almost every track. At times they sounded like The Dandy Warhols, and at other times a cross between Motorhead and Madness. They dipped into post punk and industrial sounds but all the while kept it high energy and loud.

Then it was time for local boys Bull. We’ve covered Bull more than a few times here at York Calling but each time they play it feels fresh. You never know what you’re going to get with Bull and this night was a night for an very extended version of Green followed by ironically saccharin, short but sweet, new track Love Goo. Bull’s surfer rock style is always a hit with the crowd and those that packed The Fulford Arms were no exception.

Just before the main event came Leeds three-piece Dense. They started a little shoegaze-y but with more sinister and intense moments before continuing a set of pure punk and garage rock. Aside the music they kept things interesting with a little showmanship, swapping guitars mid song and going on adventures into the crowd with mic gripped firmly in teeth.

Then finally it was night’s climax (and I don’t mean the rousing, spontaneous rendition of Happy Birthday dedicated to The Fulford Arms). North Yorkshire’s Avalanche Party. The boys have gained quite a following over the years, as well as props from BBC Radio 1 and 6Music, as well as NME and Louder The War, so it was something of an honour to see them in such an intimate venue.

Having been described as “the most exciting rock and roll band in the UK” they did not disappoint with their set, delivering funky and theatrical indie at its best. There were hints of Muse, Kasabian, Cursive, Richard Ashcroft and The Faint in a sound that was difficult to pigeon-hole. The energy in the venue was high, with an impressive amount of crowd surfing going on in such a modest space. The night ended with the explosion of Solid Gold and we were left reeling.

Here’s to the next five years!

Kieff, Ravenous Hounds, Bull, Dense and Avalanche Party played at The Fulford Arms on Saturday 5 January 2019.