Between sets, Todd P is addressing us. If you go outside to smoke, he is saying, go out of sight around the corner so as not to attract attention. This, if you attend unlicensed shows, is expected. The next bit is not: also, no smoking indoors, he is saying, it will ruin the floors. The floors?
Looking down, it is revealed that the cement normally at our feet in such spots has been replaced by a new, nicely finished wooden surface. Actually, this happened sometime last year, I realize, but I had not considered the implications. The implications being that the Monster Island Basement now hosts not only punk shows and performance art, but yoga and karate lessons. Keep the floors safe for the yoga, guys. And who says Williamsburg is changing? Todd, meanwhile, has continued laconically, now apparently directing his words to crowd member BJ Rubin of Puttin’ on the Ritz. He has been awake for 48 hours. More, 59, if you don’t count a two hour nap as real sleep. There was tons of work to do, and the Adderall someone gave him did not work so well: unsleeping, yes, but perhaps not fully awake, woozy and unproductive. And then Drunkdriver rolls out and obliterates the crowd (though not floors) with a set of concentrated dissonant fury.
Drunkdriver seems like a natural match for Golden Error actually, though I’ve never noticed them on a bill together before. Both have a certain barely constrained but magnetic intensity, a sort of danger, though Drunkdriver take this into harsher, more jarring territory, while Golden Error balance out their sound with a hooky pop-sense that makes their songs stick in the head without softening their delivery. Ohio’s Puffy Areolas, playing between those two, delivered psych rock but with similarly vicious energy, and, uh, told lots of jokes.
Matt Mondanile (Ducktails) kicked things off (along with a band I missed called Chinese Restaurants), playing with his other main project Predator Vision, which follows a similar “take something familiar and abstract it through repetition and subtle variation” setup, but with Ducktails’ tropical summer pop references replaced by a kind of 70s rock riff. Simultaneously invigorating and hypnotic. A new Predator Vision cassette is just out on very active local tape clearing house Abandon Ship.