001 Enhanced NR

LIVE: Porridge Radio (solo) / Naima Bock – The Crescent, York, 21/05/2024

Well, now we can add yet another show to that long and most illustrious list of live music events that have been but on here by local promoter Please Please You, for tonight Dana Margolin of Porridge Radio is performing solo in York on a joint tour of the UK with Naima Bock and both artists deliver quite stunning individual sets that when taken together produce yet another magical evening at the Crescent Community Venue.

Each musician lives up to their earlier promise to deliver sets that combine both old and new material. First it is the turn of Naima Bock who returns to her rather excellent 2022 debut album Giant Palm for a number of choice cuts, including ‘Dim Dum’‘Campervan’ – featured on GIITTV’s Tracks of the Week #188 – and the imperious ‘Early Morning.’ Such was the audience’s response to the latter, Bock laughingly suggests that she will play it again before the end.

026 Enhanced NR
Naima Bock

Naima Bock’s music has certainly evolved from her time spent in Goat Girl. Gone has the grunge/punk edginess of the band that she had jointly formed in 2016 but was to leave three years later due to the then intensity of the lifestyle. It has since been replaced by a more intimate folk-infused sound, influenced, in part, by her Brazilian heritage. This is clearly evidenced during her inspired reading of Luiz Gonzaga do Nascimento’s  ‘Assum Preto’, with its wonderful samba rhythm and Bock’s voice, not for the first time this evening, bringing to mind the intonation and delivery of the great Brazilian singer, Caetono Veloso.

Dana Margolin writes and performs in Porridge Radio, as well as creating the artwork for all of the Brighton indie-rock band’s albums. A prime example of her immersive visual art can be seen at the back of the Crescent stage. A Bird Flies Out Of Her Nest brings with it a serenity to the occasion, something that is immediately punctured by the first scabrous blast of Margolin’s Revelation RJT-60 guitar on ‘A Hole in the Ground’, a relatively new recruit to the Porridge full-band roster.

Fifteen songs later – split almost equally between the old and the new – and Dana Margolin has gone, off in the general direction of Sheffield, Cardiff, and Exeter for the remaining dates of this tour. In the interim she delivers an exhilarating set that walks a high wire between the bleak and the beautiful and which is all achieved without the aid of any safety net.

059 Enhanced NR2
Dana Margolin of Porridge Radio

“Don’t be a jerk. No, don’t be a jerk”, screams Dana Margolin, as ‘Eugh’ from Porridge Radio’s debut album Rice, Pasta And Other Fillers makes an early acerbic appearance. A new song – written only last week and possibly entitled ‘New Devil’ – affirms that there has been no dramatic changes in Margolin’s life experiences or her view of the world. “A new devil comes knocking. I let him in,” she sings with a certain world weariness.

With its relentless rhythm and convulsive sentiments, “You Will Come Home” makes an early bid for being the standout track of the evening. “I’m wishing myself into obscurity” Margolin suggests with a familiar air of resignation. But it is not all despair and despondency as in drawing this entrancing performance to a close she cheerfully invites requests from the crowd. First up is the compulsive ‘Birthday Party’ – taken from Porridge Radio’s last album, 2022’s Waterslide, Diving Board, Ladder To The Sky – followed by the band’s coruscating live staple ‘Sweet’ in which the hitherto seated audience rise to their feet in unison to acclaim a singularly supreme artist.

Photos: Simon Godley

More photos from Porridge Radio (solo) and Naima Bock at The Crescent, York

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.