Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Laal and i have been spending all our damn time in rock clubs of late.
1) tonight 'twas Qui at the Mercury Lounge. a case of "be careful what you wish for." the general vibe seemed to be "let's bait David Yow into doing something 'edgy,'" which amounted to throwing debris onstage and poking him punily. i guess everyone got what they came for, b/c he freakin' barfed midset. and you know what? it really wasn't the least bit funny. it was pretty depressing actually. the set started off really powerfully, with Yow prancing and shitkicking and really bellowing. he is a simply phenomenal vocalist. but alas, this band is lacking a certain pizzazz. despite their abrasiveness, the songs are really sort of stiff and static. warmed-over '90s ideas performed in an uncharismatic, workmanlike way. sorry, sorry, but this is how it is to me. plus there seemed to be some tension between Yow and the guitarist--the latter did not seem entirely down w/ the former's unhinged vibe, kind of a problem when you've invited one of the most reckless performers alive into your band. oh well...
2) last night was Cheer-Accident at the Cake Shop. outstanding trio set, with a guest vocalist (she was at the last Chicago show i was at--i keep forgetting to get her name). highlights included three "Enduring the American Dream" classics: "The Reenactment," "A Hate Which Grows," and of course, "Dismantling the Berlin Waltz," the latter featuring some outstanding drum work from Dave Bodie of Time of Orchids (they played a really intense and emotional set afterward), who had apparently first heard the tune only days before. additionally, there was a nice long trance-out on "Filet of Nod." the band grooves so hard on that--i could base a religion on Thymme Jones's left-hand hi-hat pattern. anyway, a very warm, warm vibe as tends to be the case when C-A hits town. (plus, Thymme was kind enough to bring me a copy of "Trading Balloons," a CD-R release from '97. one 52-minute song: a kaleidoscopic montage of rad that shows off all sides of the band. whirlwind brutal prog, melancholy drone, ecstatic singalong. gorgeous stuff.)
3) Saturday was Melvins/Big Business (depicted above) at Luna. since i always insist on standing in the front, we had to contend with some ridiculous mosh-type activity throughout but that sorta made it comical. at one point the dude next to us seemed to be having some sort of nervous breakdown right in the middle of the set--people kept bumping into him and he started clutching his head and screaming. kinda freaky. anyhoo, had seen the new MLVNS lineup (now featuring ALL of Big Business) and though this set wasn't as disgustingly bludgeoning as the one at Warsaw last year, it still kicked hard. they seem to be digging real deep into their back catalog these days and two highlights were "Let God Be Your Gardener" from "Ozma" and "The Ballad of Dwight Fry," an Alice Cooper cover from "Lysol." the latter was stretched waaay out w/ a verse i've never heard before and sounded truly epic. if Yow/Qui was an example of a somewhat ungraceful aging, this was the exact opposite. i'm not sure there's ever been a more confident, ungimmicky band in the world. Buzz and Dale are sounding as good as they ever have and they will not slacken. killin' it.
(in looking up the song title to that "Ozma" tune, i found this insane repository of live Melvins mp3s. dear god...)
so yeah, i'm sick of hanging out in rock clubs, but if you're not:
this Thursday, 10/11
Cake Shop, 152 Ludlow bet. Stanton and Rivington