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Gig review: C.A.F.E. Infoshop, 6/7/2012
If ever I had it in my head to start booking shows, a gig like last night's would wipe those thoughts clean.
As a fan it was pretty great. I saw three bands I liked (two of which I really liked) and came home with a bunch of new Cds on the cheap.
As a musician, it was OK. No crowd to speak of, but we made some connections and got to chat with the other bands and that comraderie is sort of cool.
But you've got to feel for the promoter. He goes out of his way to set up (and promote) the show and the bands are good, and if anyone was there to see them, they would probably really like 'em, but three people show and one of them leaves after the second act.
That's part of the business, but it's crap to see up close.
Our set: According for one of the dudes from Against the Grain, we're what it would sound like if Jello Biafra sang for AFI, but like, the old AFI, before they got all weird and moody. I accept this comparision.
Comfort Slacks: A two-piece electronic noise band from Napa. Dancey and fun and sort of weird. Like a more refined Fatty Cakes. It was one of those sets where I wished I could tell the rest of the world what they were missing ... of course, with Twitter I could have I guess ... whatever.
The guy had Mike Patton hair and moustache, and pounded away on a guitar plugged into a tiny Marshall practice amp that crackled some, while the girl played a keyboard and sang and did whatever it is you do to make those blips and bloops and drum noises.
Jon Barba, aka Nicole Kidman: Apparently, a bunch of people wanted to see this guy. Only, they didn't show up to the show because they were mostly at a show around the corner at the CYC. Then, someone from that other show came and invited him over, so he jumped ship and played there instead. Sweet!
Seriously, though you can't blame him.
Against the Grain: Speed rock from Detroit. Not exactly sure what differentiates speed rock from speed metal, or if it matters to draw such lines. The band plays super-fast straight-ahead rock n' roll. Think Motorhead w/out Lemmy's vocals, or Zeke. Also, they were LOUD (so, so loud) and affected this band persona that was pure rock 'n roll, full of danger and sleaze. They seemed like a much bigger band, like they should have an opening spot on somea stadium gig somewhere, not throwing down in some one-time Chinese joint.
Hightlight of the set (probably the night): Their cover of Turbonegro's "All My Friends are Dead."
Violation: Three-piece hard-core, skate punk with an old-school vibe and some really cool guitar work. Mostly angry, screaming vocals, though they deviated from that enough to keep me hooked. Did a couple of ska songs I really dug.