Quality time! Ghengis Tron are such nice dudes. They pose for pictures and aren’t pissed that their fan base is “pimply teenage boys,” or so they framed the demographic. And though the place was jammed with kids, there were totally old people too. Taking pictures, of the kids moshing around to Ghengis Tron.
More importantly, and impressively, Market Hotel survived another performance NYPD-free this Saturday, a feat considering the non-Showpaper benefit that occurred a few days prior. It took a lot of announcements by Mr. Todd Patrick keeping people on their toes (“If you are under twenty one you can’t drink. Please don’t make it obvious that you’re drinking.” Or something to that effect), but the reminders seemed to pan out. The cops never came, though we didn’t know what would happen at the time.
It was probably this atmosphere of imminent implosion that made so many of the performances electric. Apologies in advance for the four of you out there who look forward to words as much as images, as this isn’t going to be much of a recap. A crew of Impose people, including myself, are about to jump in an RV for a trip down to Austin, and I’m still trying to figure out if I have clean underwear anywhere.
So with that… Double Dagger got kids moshing around despite being the first set. They also play the sort of somewhat “angular” post punk-leaning music that always sounds way harder and way better live. Their front man Nolen Strals is crazy. They were followed by Chevue, a band of goofy, affable French people from Paris with a frontman who affects a Rasputin-like crazy-person rant, pacing like in a trance, rushing back and forth behind his band one moment and within the crowd the next.
Ponytail showcased some of their new, funkier, ever-virtuosic material to the obvious approval of an audience that was already densely packed in by their set time (three more to go after them). Also, maybe it’s just the way Molly Siegle gestures like a conjuring preacher, but I swear that their combined attack generated its own gusts of wind.
Aa experimented with a more intricate use of lights that included extra colors (now with blue and gold) and foot pedals. But when we talked to them after the show they were seemingly in awe of Ghengis Tron’s (midi-operated?) fluorescent bulb extravaganza. Aa also experimented with what they dubbed Phil Collins inspired, synth-focused pop songs (well, pop for Aa), pieces that had as much of the drum circle as ever, just with the surprising addition of vocal melody and more articulated chord voicings.
It was my first time catching Shooting Spires with a full band. Sure, there’s plenty of Parts and Labor in there but my initial impressions were that the live act shifts the auditory focus away from the detailed static of BJ Warshaw’s effects pedals and various noise boxes and centers it instead on the chordal- the pop structures emphasized in heavier, bigger, more monolithic tones. In other words, I guess, more rock-based than noise based. Whatever that means.
Finally. Ghengis Tron. Yes, there were pimply teenage kids in the audience, yes there were others among us there to photograph their presence, but their synthesized metal proved to be a sort of strange synthesis of the disparate elements they themselves had helped to curate for the night’s show. Brutal.