Monday, February 04, 2008

SHITGAZE Superbowl

This is the last time I'm ever going to use the "s" word, since that joke is wearing thin already, but since Saturday's show at Bourbon St. featured two Titans of Shitgaze--the NME-approved Tyvek and the me-approved Guinea Worms--going head to head for the shit-fi crown, I guess it's OK one last time.

I missed Blind Shake, who is apparently Michael Yonkers' backing band? Guess I'll catch 'em next time ... kind of curious ... got there in time to see Guinea Worms finish a rendition of their ode to collegiate fashion, "Drunk in Yr Uggs" ("drunk in yr uggs, walkin' slow for the thugs/nothing on yr thighs, except for my eyes") then launch into the Official Party Anthem of 2008 (sez me), "Box of Records." This song is evil. Since the chorus repeats at least 10 times througout the course of the song, and since the melody is retard-simple, you will be tortured by Will Foster's reedy voice wailing "there's really nothing better, there's really nothing better" in your head over and over again for days after one listen. It's been on repeat in my skull for weeks now, to the point where I might as well not even buy the 7", but I probably will cuz I guess that's kind of like downloading. Maybe someday we will be able to download songs directly to a chip in our brains. Whoa! Such was the hottness of their set that the Worms were actually looking--and my opinion was corroborated by a female friend--pretty hot themselves. Who says shitgaze can't be sexy???

Despite rampant hype and having played in Cbus at least 3 or 4 times in as many years, I had yet to experience Tyvek live. Rampant hype almost always = bitter disappoinment, but Tyvek proved to be hype-worthy and then some. For the first few songs I remained unmoved and I thought I'd been had by the Internet/record-nerd cabal--AGAIN--and then about halfway through their set something clicked and they became riveting and life-affirming. "Don't take away my air conditioner/it'll make it hard for me to sleep" singer Kevin begs, and you have the feeling he really needs that air conditioner. Like it might be the last thing standing between his sanity and a shooting spree at a fast-food establishment. Portraits of everyday despair against a clanging guitar backdrop and skeletal drums (reminds me vaguely of Mick Collin's post-Gories project Blacktop). Rock n roll bread n butter.

Wish I had more good things to say about Birthday Suits; I like 'em live just fine, but I don't ever feel a need to hear them on record. They're fantastically explosive onstage but the songs don't stick. They work so hard, though, I really want to root for them. Someone recommend something, a 7" or something, that will change my mind.


DJ Rick said...

Hey, just found this's some good shit. I like this feces. Seriously, though...Great to have you aboard the Tyvek bandwagon now. Don'tcha know that when Kevin pleads for air conditioning, it's so immediate and effective that even a room fulla San Francisco's slummin'/lumpen indie-intelligentsia got the gist. Really, though...The funny thing about it is that it's always 60°F in SF and nobody owns a car. Yet, when you're from the Midwest like Tyvek, I guess you have certain preconceptions about California, and just just assume that we're all basking in sunshine all day, hangin' out with celebs, and surfing to work. Kevin prefaced the song before they played it at the Hemlock in SF by saying, "This song is about something you cannot lie without...and that's air conditioning!" Just then, there was a collective "What the fuck is that?" It was like the Deaner in Fubar when he drank that shit pilsner, but minus the Canadian accent, and plus the Spiccoli accent (if there's one preconception that's true, it's that all our bros sound like Spiccoli).

And, damn...If I haven't been preaching to everyone in Sacto about "Box of Records" as the ultimate 2008 themesong, I don't know what you'd call my proselytizing. That song is exactly how I feel right about now. And you can't trust anything on a computer. My home's PC accidentally hit some smutbomb hiding under a deceptive HTML-link, and now all my neatly filed weirdpunk, shit-gaze, and glue-wave mp3s are toast!

LauraB said...

DJ Rick? THE DJ Rick of "Art for Spastics" fame? Sweet ... I check out AfS on a pretty regular basis, it's badass. Thanks for stopping by. I don't know anything about CA, I've never been there but I just turned 30 so I don't see any reason to start now.

Steve said...

I agree 100% on the Birthday Suits thing. Burndowns and Radio Beats have both played with them and they have the best live show, but I couldn't remember a song on a record to save my life.

I wish I had been at that show. Shit. Also, you are linked, GIRL.

Anonymous said...

shitgaze.....bringing sexy back!
honestly the best thing to happen, since punk music!
....And i mean that with all my heart!