Live: Teary of Eye; Bereft of Speech. Perfume Genius, St Mary's Church Brighton.

Sacrilegious or sardonic as it may be on behalf of the bookers of Brighton or elsewhere (re: the latter tonight's spotlights are of exclusively satanic hue), whether ardent believer, agnostic or outright atheist there's incontestably no better venue than your local House of the Lord. Yet a four pack ring strewn before the altar and a bar at the back demonstrate a slight disregard for location and indeed this divine setting ensures the unshakably uncomfortable sensations of any given Sunday are immediately imitated upon entrance. That hideous gut-wrench signalling an imminent return to the institutionalised authority education provides; the disintegration of any diversion over the following five days at the very least. However in amongst the harrowing desolation and despondency of Perfume Genius' lamentably breviloquent set at The Great Escape was located an intense delight.

Albeit a sombre affair fit for the most hallowed of Seventh-day Sabbaths, Hadreas constructs a wall of immovable, absolutely impenetrable emotivity that floors you (quite literally in umpteen cases – pert buttocks perch atop many a corroded tile); leaves you there whimpering for a little while; then picks you up, dusts you down, and whisks you home. Quite pertinently, the gospel-fringed grandiosity of Take Me Home torments the mind throughout the subsequent traintrack trundle, gradually seducing the thing back to bed.

Situated in the so-called 'gay quarter' of Kemp Town, St Mary's Church is an ever more intriguing setting from which Hadreas may enthral: his widely documented homosexuality plays an entirely formative role within his sparse, subdued and sumptuously dark lyrical twists and turns and here it consequently seems if not antagonistic then inherently problematic, given the antimony of the Catholic Church toward the acting upon his sexual orientation. Thus as he pleads: "Please pray for me" his words are imbued with an almost supernal poignancy for however full Heaven may be or indeed however sinful Hadreas may have been according to the scriptures and tables of stone of yore there can't not be room for this particular number. 17 too, with its lyrics of stringing things up on fences and dousing them "with semen", assumes an astonishing, unspeakably dumbfounding discomfort. For want of a more applicable terminology, it's rather apparent that Hadreas couldn't give a toss about the powers that be, celestial or otherwise.

From the hymnal rumble of No Tear, to the sullen anthemia of Hood, to the playful, puppy-like refrains of Learning it's an intensely affecting show and one that ideally exhibits Hadreas' wide-eyed naïveté. His eyes blackened and pupils possessed, they're surely more sizeable than "grandpa's eyes" and could questionably be more inviting than "the hands of God" even when coated in that glistening patina of great comfort, as referenced on an emotionally commotional Dark Parts. Reduced to a shivering, quivering wreck with legs ungainly sprawled across chilling floor All Waters and Sister Song tickle bulging tear ducts as both provide the consummate sonic perception of the utmost loneliness, Hadreas seemingly ever so jejune and essentially a little petrified by the devastating power he now musically wields. Although I feel somewhat hesitant to delve down blasphemous pitfall, well, Hadreas merits this sort of gay literary abandon: if Jesus died for the sins of men then he this evening went some way to justifying said great carnal sacrifice.