Bleached at Bitterzoet, Friday 20 May 2016

My first time ever at Bitterzoet in Amsterdam! I had a ticket to see Wintersleep there in September of 2012, but for some reason I didn’t go along. I don’t remember why not. Looking back at blog posts from around that time, I don’t see any events that would have obviously clashed. I do, however, see a Frightened Rabbit gig that I have no memory of attending. None. This is weird. I was speaking to a friend just last week about how I would love to see Frightened Rabbit live some time. Seeing that I just wrote down a set list for the gig doesn’t help. Did I really see them, or did I just copy the set list from somewhere else? This is exactly why I spend time writing on my blog. The writing process fixes things in my memory much more strongly. Attaching even poor quality photographs snapped at a gig gives me something more to hang on to.

So: Bitterzoet! It’s a cool little venue (capacity 350) that from the outside looks just like any other bar or restaurant on the street. But inside you down some narrow stairs, turn some corners, come back up some narrow stairs, and it feels like you’ve been spelunking and have arrived in a cavern in the centre of some massive rock formation. There’s a small stage at the far end, a raised area to the rear (for the Merch stand), and a small balcony up to the left. Red stained glass windows portraying lascivious and devilish scenes are illuminated from behind, but obviously not with actual daylight.

Bitterziet stained glass

Bleached came on a bit late, at about 21:20: Jennifer and Jessica Clavin on guitars, Micayla Grace on bass, and a male drummer at the back. They explained they were late because they’d had to drive eight hours to get there, but that didn’t stop them from playing a tight set, full of short, spiky, punchy songs with lots of hair tossing and woo-woos. The small size of the venue gave them the freedom to come down off the stage and play and dance in amongst the audience several times during the show. It felt like the perfect venue to see them at. (Does that explain the quantity of photographers? There were four dudes wielding expensive camera kit right at the front of the stage, taking pictures throughout.)

Set list:

  1. Trying To Lose Myself Again
  2. Keep On Keeping On
  3. Dazed
  4. Wednesday Night Melody
  5. Sleepwalking
  6. Searching Through The Past
  7. Sour Candy
  8. Electric Chair
  9. Wasted On You
  10. Think of You
  11. ? Didn’t recognize this one
  12. Dead In Your Head

Encore:

  1. Next Stop