Given how amazing their performances are as sheer, emotive spectacles, it’s an injustice that the British duo Nordic Giants aren’t selling out arenas right now. With their ominous lighting, enigmatic attires and cinematic aura, the team of masked musicians identified only as “Loki” and “Rôka” are a group more deserving than anybody else of the controversial label “post-rock”.
Armed solely with a drumkit, piano and bowed guitar, Nordic Giants counteract their minimalist music by screening awe-inspiring and heart-wrenching short films on the backdrop behind them, all of their visual pieces united in a subversive wit that celebrates unity and the purity of the human spirit. Songs like the piano-driven “Together” and “Mechanical Minds” drive this point home even further, sampling powerful speeches from such figures as Martin Luther King, Jr. and Charlie Chaplin.
As if all of this brilliance was not enough, Nordic Giants found their perfect context as their uniquely visual display graced a Halloween show at Southampton’s Talking Heads. It was the perfect night for such an all-consuming exercise of the senses; one of the few times in which a band finds itself able to craft a treat for the eyes just as sumptuous and engaging as for the ears.
Who have been your favourite live performers of this year? Be sure to let us know in the comments section!