The doom rock of Australia’s Divide and Dissolve took hold of Gray’s Ferry venue Century on Tuesday night. The sublime aural powers of the duo merged with Philly acts Samara and Hot Tears to make for a superb night of music. Here are some photos and highlights from the night.
1. Divide and Dissolve rattled the walls.
With gigantic amps and propulsive guitar, saxophone and drums, Divide and Dissolve had Century trembling in a literal sense while also rattling the minds of the Philadelphia audience. Guitar and sax wizard Takiaya Reed (pictured above) took over the mic between songs to deliver the band’s anti-colonialism and anti-white-supremacy stance—a call to change the way we treat each other and the land, which is a powerful, resonating message for the times.
2. The new songs rocked in more ways than one.
Reed and drummer Sylvie Nehill played songs from their 2018 release, Abomination, including the lead single, “Assimilation.” The cacophony of percussion, guitar and soul-shaking amps punctuated their rage and determination to fix this fucked-up world.
3. Samara delivered fiery punk.
Philadelphia five piece Samara began the night with a furious set of punk. Singing about struggles with sleep and addiction, among other personal topics, the band meshed guitar, bass, violin and drums into a raging wind of emotions. They are a raucous breath of fresh air.
4. Hot Tears devastated while also uplifting the audience.
Hot Tears appeared with Molly Fisher on vocals, guitar, drums and ankle bells. Her music was emotionally pointed and political, touching on topics that ranged from sexual violence to Palestine. And with a saxophone assist on one song by Divide and Dissolve’s Reed, Hot Tears’ set, which closed the night, brought the event full circle. Reed was deeply connected to both bands and had many friends in the room, showing how an international band and progressive ideas for change can connect with local music fans.