The Horrors

In direct competition with My Chemical Romance and Beady Eye, those wanting to avoid prattish frontmen were led to the Festival Republic stage for The Horrors on Saturday night. However, patience prevailed as the band arrived ten minutes late only to saunter straight into the all-clearing 'Changing The Rain'. No greeting, just brooding feedback, and a smoke enveloped stage swathed in deep primary colours.

For once, lead singer Faris Rotter sounded oddly sincere before his vocals took hold of spiralling synths during the dark, twisted 'Who Can Say?' Much can be said for their arrogance but when a band can deliver such magnificent cynicism, as heard in 'I Can See Through You', it was to be admired. Drenched in eerie synths, 'Three Decades', proved the bands formidability through noise and Rotter's viciously delivered vocals.

Tracks from their new album, "Skying", were performed with an irresistible technicolour brilliance. 'Endless Blue' with its slow, soothing opening refrains only to suddenly smash into life from vivid, electric guitar thrashings. With their gradually expanding crowd now engrossed, 'Sea Within A Sea' began in a similarly building fashion only to succumb to a menacing riff and a malevolent backing sound.

'Still Life' was also gaining momentum amidst subtle 80s synths and sophistic basslines before blackness. Only this was not orchestrated but total blackness with the only lights untouched by the power cut being cigarettes lit onstage. Endearingly the crowd carried on the song for most of the ten minutes it took for power to return. With no time to lose they returned with their searing My Bloody Valentine-esque white noise for 'Mirror's Image'. Their closing track, 'Moving Further Away', proved how far the band have come. No longer reliant on shock and awe tactics, the track glided along on pulsating beats until they allowed themselves one final ear splitting guitar thrashing onto which Rotter attempted in vain to be heard over the stunning din.