Panchiko // Live @ Bronze Peacock Room // 10.20.22 CONCERT REVIEWS FEATURED MUSIC by Ommar Ortuvia - October 23, 2022October 27, 2022 Articles and Photos by: Ommar Ortuvia Houston, TX — Everybody likes a Cinderella story, but in the music industry – which can get very cutthroat – we rarely hear about them. Panchiko’s story is somewhat of a Cinderella story since it took the band almost 20 years to get the recognition that they hoped to achieve when they recorded their demo album D>E>A>T>H>M>E>T>A>L in 2000. To summarize this story, someone purchased this demo album in a UK thrift store in 2016, and after uploading their songs to a forum, one thing led to another until finally in 2020 one of the band members was cold contacted to verify if he indeed was one of the band members listed on the CD. And it was. And during this time when no one knew who Panchiko was or if they were even a real band, a considerable following had been generated over the original tracks that were uploaded, which became very distinctive because thanks to old father time, the CD had become a victim to rot and gave the tracks a heavy & dreamy sweeping-phasing distortion to all the songs. But many people claim that this distortion gave the indie-shoegaze songs a unique lo-fi appeal that only helped to pique the interest in the mystery band Panchiko. Once the word got out that a following for Panchiko’s music existed, 3 of the 4 members got together and provided non-rotted digital copies of their songs, along with additional demos and unreleased tracks. All this ultimately led Panchiko to formally reunite and start playing shows. Which brings us to Thursday night at the Bronze Peacock Room in downtown Houston, where a varied gathering ranging between alt hipsters and comfortable casual fashionistas, to tweens and older adults, came to see Panchiko play live. Most in the crowd had probably not even been born when Panchiko’s album D>E>A>T>H>M>E>T>A>L was pressed (or burned), but that didn’t stop anybody from enjoying the chill music from the British lads who gave a 75-minute sway-inducing performance. The show started with a recording of “That One Time a Girl Sang And Saved The Galaxy,” with Panchiko starting their live set with “Stuck,” and then moving through songs mostly from their updated D>E>A>T>H>M>E>T>A>L album and Ferric Oxide album, with the singer and guitarists moving between the axe and keys. Between songs there was friendly banter between the band and the crowd, with the latter regularly pointing out Panchiko’s accent (the band originates from Nottingham, England), especially when “water” was pronounced as “woo-tah.” About halfway through the set the band mentioned that a new album was in the works, with many in the crowd getting excited about this future release. Prior to playing Laputa (named after the floating city in Hayao Miyazaki’s 1986 film “Castle In The Sky”) the crowd was asked to turn on their phone flashlights, washing the band in a cool white light – a nice change from the venue’s predominant purple and red lights. The penultimate song was reserved for “D>E>A>T>H>M>E>T>A>L,” with the intensity of cheers one could tell that this is a fan favorite, and then the closer of the night was placed upon “Kicking Cars,” an extra track from their D>E>A>T>H>M>E>T>A>L reissue. Overall Panchiko was able to reflect the mood from their songs and albums well into their live act, having never a dull moment during their set and giving those in attendance a show that will live fondly in their hearts and memories. This brings great promise for the future, since a new album and possible subsequent tour are the natural next steps. As someone fortunate to have experienced Panchiko that night, one cannot help but to feel that the ability to have seen them live and in the flesh was brought on by a series of chance actions by random strangers throughout the world. It boggles one’s mind to think that the internet -with all its flaws and benefits- made it possible for this group of musicians to accomplish their teenage dreams of playing music for enthusiastic crowds. Had it not been for the cause-and-effect of someone uploading 4 random tracks from a rotted CD with hardly any information about the band, Panchiko’s participants would still be in their 9-5s back home in England. So to that anonymous person who purchased the CD and set off this chain reaction, we salute you and thank you for bringing this band to light!