On 19th October ambient duo A Winged Victory For the Sullen played the first of two sold out shows at London’s Barbican venue. Coming on the back of new album Atomos they played pieces from both that release and their debut album in a fantastic show.
Without support the duo came on at eight, joined by a string quartet to begin the night with the first piece from the new album, Atomos I. With Dustin O’Halloran taking his place behind the piano and Adam Wiltzie alternating between expressive electronics and shimmering guitar they kicked off the night beautifully, the soft sullen music filing the ornate venue.
With the first half of the set dominated with pieces from the new album the atmosphere was electric, the strings complimenting the blissful droning quality of the music in a lovely manner. The piano led A Symphony Pathetique is as expressive and melancholy as a classical piece can be, and when joined by the strings, the soundscape that filled the venue bristled with a touch of magic. The highlight was We Played Some Open Chords from the debut, the layered sound of the guitar and piano being a mesmerising experience. The soft lighting and calm mannerism of the group really brought their music to life and they ended a set that was all too short with Atomos XII in a great piece led by the powerful sound of the strings.
A Winged Victory For the Sullen are arguably the finest band playing this style of classical ambience today, due to the emotive nature of their music and their live show is no less beautiful – on the night they were nothing short of stunning.