- 09 Dec 19
Fusing surreal visuals with an immersive set of songs, Æ Mak emerged triumphant.
On Saturday night, a packed crowd of concertgoers at Dublin's Button Factory were treated to an electric performance from the rising Æ Mak. Delivering a gut-punching set of glitchy pop perfection, I walked away convinced I'd seen the future of Irish music.
Before Æ Mak herself even took the stage, I felt that I was in for a treat. Her backing band approached the floor, and immediately an elaborate set of timed visuals appeared on a screen, matching up to every beat. Heavy bass, cinematic effects, and pulsing percussion suspensefully set the backdrop for her to storm the stage.
Then, she appeared. Right out of the gates, Æ Mak opened things up with the one-two punch of 'Intro/Release Yourself' and 'Too Sad to Sing.' She instantly had the crowd hooked as enthused spectators shouted back the lyrics at her. Though the vocals were distorted and sometimes filtered through effects, they were always flawlessly sung and soul-piercing.
Æ Mak's songs stand alone as great, but it was her conviction and persona that brought the performance to towering heights. She embodies the raw fury of a punk singer and the cold calculation of a robotic pop star. It's an exercise in acting, and a total commitment to taking on a character. She demands your attention and begs you to reconsider the modern musical landscape.
Æ Mak continued relentlessly punching her way through song after song of destructive pop chaos. By the end of the show, the whole crowd had erupted into a dance floor, something akin to a dystopian rave. Finishing off the set with 'Glow,' we felt the full feeling of catharsis as Æ Mak raged one last time. At the end, she defiantly threw the mic stand to the stage-floor.
The performance was nothing short of exhilarating, and beyond that it was refreshing. In a world saturated with musicians that sound and act all too similar, Æ Mak comes as a revelation with her wholly original voice and sound. It stands out amongst all the sing-song indie bands and wannabe-pop stars as something urgent, in-your-face, and totally transcendent. Ultimately, I can't wait to see what Æ Mak has in store for us next.
Photo Credit: Emily O' Callaghan, check out her full gallery here