Tycho @ Trinity Centre, Bristol, 08/06/2017

TychoThe Trinity Centre has always been highly regarded for its sound quality, with infamous hall amplification and impressive sound system. It makes a fitting venue for Tycho, with their expansive soundscapes able to fill the heightened ceilings. Tycho’s smooth and atmospheric music has earned them a steady growth of recognition over the years, firmly placing themselves in the experimental electronic era.

A white light beneath Tycho sets the precedent for a visual show as they pour onto the stage. Tycho’s performances are for the eyes as much as the ears, with intensifying visuals throughout the show; you won’t be surprised to hear that Scott Hansen, the founding member of Tycho, is a graphic artist as well as producer. He certainly puts both traits to the test in his performances: shapes collide with colours and landscapes, twisting and turning through time and location, co-ordinated to the pace of the tracks. There’s a recurrent triangle theme, the ultimate hip shape, echoing sentiments of alt-J. The sets of shapes moving through each other at speed energise what would have been a fairly slow moving performance.

Tycho themselves seem cool and collected, flowing through their set list; Epoch, their album released late last year, gets a particularly good workout. The flawless delivery of their synth-driven tracks with thundering bass stun the crowd into a slow-paced movement. With the exaggerated bass, some of the tracks could have got away with a 'soft techno' label, but the ambient nature of the tracks shines through, with floating textures and pleasing melodies. The sparsity of vocals is not a lack at all, as the silence of the crowd allows moments of reflection, bringing a more introspective element to their performance.

Tycho ends their set list on “Epoch” but duly return for an encore. The illuminated hall gets a rainbow-themed backdrop, mixing floral landscapes with slowed-down flame ripples and moon scenes. The atmospheric “Montana” finally rounds off the evening, which ends with the circle image we’ve come to associate with the band.

In a carefully crafted display of artistic talent, both visually and audibly, Tycho land themselves in a transient space. Their fleeting graphics choreographed to the steady flow of their electronic dance music makes for a wholly calming yet equally exciting show. Giving the Trinity Centre’s PA system a run for its money, we can’t wait for Tycho to come back to Bristol.


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