D.O.A. at Club Europa
D.O.A. played their "Final NYC Show" at Club Europa. Then an hour later they played a secret show at The Grand Victory. Sure, why not? Actually, that's the same thing The Dwarves did two weeks earlier. I think both shows were put on by Scenic Presents. Okay, I get the hint.
This was probably the tightest performance I've seen from D.O.A. While they did do one new song (about the Trayvon Martin case I believe) they mostly stuck to "The Classics". Maybe it is because they have played them so many times over the years but they nailed every single one and the audience loved it. Maybe it's because they were giving the audience exactly what they wanted, hmmm?
Psychic TV at Club Europa
Although these are not my finest photos I definitely wanted to post something from these guys. Psychic TV seems to play Club Europa about once a year every December. When I put next year's show on the calendar, and I will because they are well worth catching, at least there will be pictures.
Sadly for me lead singer Genesis P-Orridge opened the show by instructing the venue to turn down the lights. He felt that the audience "doesn't need to see us", a concept which is more or less the opposite of "concert photography". Unfortunately I wasn't really in a good position to use a flash either so I had to make do with what light I could get, mostly light from the psychedelic video projections. At least the photos are colorful (another advantage of skipping the flash).
Psychic TV's music is composed of dense layers of sound. It seems like everyone in the band is playing all the time, and there are quite a few band members. At the bottom are the usual guitar-bass-drum of a rock band which provides momentum to the music. On top of that are some unusual combinations of sounds. Can you recall the last time you saw an electronic keyboardist and a violinist in the same band? How about someone playing a violin with two bows at once?
As complex as their music may be it is certainly not disorganized. "Composed" is the right word to describe it. Not only are musicians "composed" as in "they know their stuff" but the songs are carefully crafted like classical music. This is not surprising. Genesis P-Orridge has a long musical history and the band has existed in some form for 30 years now. I suppose we could be hearing the "best of" every time they play. So be it, the result is a great live show. Even the relatively silly songs (e.g. their cover of Hawkwind's "Silver Machine") are fun to listen to. The truly great ones (like "Thank You") are transcendent.
King Dude at Club Europa
Vaguely gothic heavy folk is an actual genre these days. King Dude distinguish themselves by emphasizing the American Gothic quality of their music (I would have said "Southern Gothic" but they're from Seattle). Certainly the visuals are along those lines. The all-black American flag they used as a backdrop is a big clue, and with those outfits they just have to be going for the Night of the Hunter look. There is plenty of religious imagery in songs with titles like "Jesus In The Courtyard" and "Lucifer's The Light Of The World" as well.
Their music draws upon folk, country, and maybe some early rock-n-roll in their (relatively) optimistic numbers. It does not however seem to be influenced in any significant way by metal, industrial, dark wave or any newer vaguely gothic music. It is certainly not just acoustic black metal. Instead they have created an alternate take on folk music where hope drowned years ago and you would only "smile on your brother" right before you slit his throat, or perhaps decided at the last second not to. Perhaps.
In the past I have only seen T.J. Cowgill perform these songs solo. I couldn't tell you when King Dude became a 3-piece but they sound great. No complaints about that. The three-piece lineup sounds a bit more like a country act. If nothing else adding drums will do that. Perhaps we are seeing the first steps in a new direction for King Dude?
Sister Anne at Club Europa
Death at Club Europa