Carnivorous Bells at Johnny Brenda's
Carnivorous Bells are loud and have a lead singer who sings hard. I would imagine that they have played at least a few gigs with hardcore and metal bands. That said they aren't quite either of those.
At first they reminded me of Buck Gooter. The thing is, Buck Gooter tend to build songs on top of a single hook or loop which I suppose puts the focus on the lyrics. Carnivorous Bells keep changing things up. There are all sorts of things going on musically here: metal riffs, Middle Eastern sounding guitars, tin can clanking sounds, and obviously there's that saxophone. I have no clue about their lyrics, which are exactly as indecipherable to me as many a hardcore bands' lyrics. On their Bandcamp they call themselves "Cave Prog". Is Prog Rock known for its lyricism? I suspect the overall impact of the music matters more than intelligibility.
Carnivorous Bells's Website, Music.
Mesh at Johnny Brenda's
Mesh is a new (I think) band out of Philly playing jangle rock about weird shit. There's "CIA Mind Control", which is a paranoid little song about messing with one's brain. Then there is "Potato Head" which is a song about a... regular potato, with no mustache or anything. For fans of Dark Web, for what are probably obvious reasons: Same lead singer, at least some thematic overlap, and also working hard to make Philly a little bit weirder.
Tropical Fuck Storm at Johnny Brenda's
I barely even need to write up a band with a name like that. Odds are you're already binging them to see whether I made them up. Yeah, they're from Australia, so maybe it means something different there?
If you're still reading this webpage instead of Bing then stop doing that and check out this video first. The video for Braindrops is how I discovered this band during COVID. It captured my sense of malaise better than anything else I heard in 2020. I also loved the cheap and insane DIY aesthetic. It reminds me of the video for Loser by Beck (a personal fave from college).
So now I finally had the chance to see them live on their first US tour (delayed due to the suck-C). If you're into crazy poetry you might like them. Think Protomartyr but more down to Earth... usually... The Future of History excepted. They didn't play that one but they did cover Ann by The Stooges. "Punk but Poetic" is perhaps apropros.
You may notice that I took another break from photography. Although I have been going out I just wasn't all that inspired to photograph anything. I basically saw a bunch of good bands I had seen and photographed before. Concert photography already feels like doing the same thing over and over, at least the band or venue or something should be new. The results are in my opinion a bit on the weak side since I'm out of practice but like I said I don't really need to write up or market this band at all because they're called Tropical Fuck Storm and you're either curious or you're not.
Skating Polly at Underground Arts
Skating Polly's set was too short. I have too many favorite Skating Polly songs for a ten(?)-song set to even come close to including all of them, especially when they're trying out some new songs too. Ah well, I'll have to wait for them to come back to town as headliners.