I first heard of Smoke Bellow from my friends Ruby and Michael who were sharing a practice space with the band in The Hour Haus. They thought they would make for a great microshow and urged me to check out their Kraut-influenced music. At the time there was very little about them or their recordings online. But I took their word for it on a whim and booked them for a microshow.
They showed up and we chatted briefly. Inititally, I thought they were a little quiet and possibly nervous – understandably so as they were about to play a pretty intimate show. If I hadn’t been producing microshows for half a dozen years, I might have thought that they were being stand-offish. Clearly, this wasn’t the case as I learned later in the night.
Multi-instrumentalist Meredith McHugh plays vintage analog keyboards, guitars, drums and sings. She is joined by Christian Best who plays an equally involved role. They are both originally from Australia but moved here recently for work and fit in perfectly with the amazing Baltimore music scene. Alex Haworth joined the band on drums and percussion.
Their microshow was pretty fantastic. Stellar drones, dirges and incredible use of the motorik. The audience was completely mesmerized by their sound witchcraftery. Their lack of verse/chorus song structure lent itself to a song structure defined by textures and rhythms.
After the show the band and their friends hung out for a bit to drink a few beers. They were clearly much more relaxed after the show. Super duper sweethearts. I hope you enjoy the microshow as much as I enjoyed it.