Middle Class Rut, Flashguns

Rhian Daly 12/02/2009

It's funny how it's always so surprising when bands that consist of just two members make music of such volume that you'd expect there to be another three of them, hidden just out of view. You'd think everyone would be used to it by now but judging by the faces of the handful of people stood nonchalantly in Koko at the start of Middle Class Rut's set, you'd be wrong.

The Sacramento duo are playing to a small audience to start with, for a number of reasons. One, they've been given a fairly early stage time and, as we all know, only geeks and losers arrive at shows that promptly. Two, they're supporting Norwegian pop star, Ida Maria. The main support is Flashguns. Not exactly the two bands I would've billed MC Rut as openers for but each to their own.

As the venue fills up, frontman Zack Lopez and drummer Sean Stockham deliver a set of brutal, ear-splitting punk that's vaguely reminiscent of Jane's Addiction at their peak but rawer and with more primal energy. New single Busy Bein' Born is the highlight of their short set, in essence the perfect introductory song for new listeners, encapsulating what MC Rut are all about in just under five minutes - stomach churning riffs, powerful beats and impassioned vocals from both Lopez and Stockham.

Pretty swiftly, the pair are heading off stage leaving Koko to reflect on what it has just witnessed and, for those who weren't expecting such an aggressive start to their night, the opportunity to recover with a stiff drink.