By Max Foley
May 8, 2015
CALGARY — After a decade of mind-boggling releases and legendary live sets, with three studio albums spanning punk-influenced high-octane bangers and delightful jungle jams, Pendulum is one of drum and bass’s most influential tastemakers.
Despite the limbo of sorts the group has been in as of late – with front man Rob Swire and bassist Gareth McGrillen pursuing their Knife Party project while DJ Paul Harding and MC Ben Mount keep the band’s legacy alive with a smattering of global DJ sets – their following is still thriving. Their set at Marquee on Friday was a resounding affirmation of their dedication to staying on the map.
Backed by the timeless junglist sounds of local talents Logo, Obscene and Supreme Hustle boss Slim Pickins, Harding and Mount delivered an incredible and electrifying performance. Classic Pendulum anthems such as the bouncy and rolling basslines of “Fasten Your Seatbelt” and the mosh pit-inducing, ‘90s action movie-esque punk riffs of “Showdown” clashed with cutting-edge rave bangers such as Knife Party’s “Boss Mode.”
Pendulum’s skeleton crew masterfully addressed the group’s spectrum-spanning library, throwing the crowd for a loop through careful selection of tracks ranging from in your face intense to milder multi-layered jams. Bringing the show to a head with a barrage of tracks from their last album Immersion, Harding pulled bits and bites from tracks like “Encoder” and “Under the Waves” and played them off the intensity of “Watercolor” and The Prodigy-evoking sounds of “The Vulture.”
Mount’s commanding MCing skills added another layer to the ensemble, the metaphorical icing on the bass-laced cake.
Never to be outdone, Harding and Mount’s final offering of the night was Pendulum’s unequivocal reinterpretation of Metallica’s “Master of Puppets,” a rare treat layered with the nostalgia of the band’s live show era.
In short, with a long-anticipated stop in the heartland of the Canadian bass music scene, Pendulum has stoked the fire that lay smoldering amongst speculation of the band’s return and demonstrated their commitment to defending their spot at the pinnacle of drum and bass.AB, Alberta, Marquee, Marquee Beer Market & Stage, Pendulum