It was just one big British Bloke Brigade at Bowery Ballroom tonight. It was a perfect night for the ex-patriots to feel right at home. All you need is some Jaffa cakes, a spot of tea and someone to shine your shoes, Governor.
The main act was my buddies the Rakes, who are just about the hardest working freshman band in British rock. They've been relentlessly touring to promote Capture/Release, their ode to the cycle of working during the day and partying every night. This should make it into your CD collection. Like Jell-o, there's always room for one more. It should be available in a non-import capacity on April 25th.
What I'm writing tonight I've written before, so sorry if I repeat myself...
As a live act, they're the type of post-punk, new wave band you want playing your house party. They're not jaded or fashion templates, they come to have a good time and rock this place. As a showman, lead singer Alan Donohoe is like a better adjusted Ian Curtis, and a better dancer. He does act like a toddler with his rapid clapping and ramblings on stage. It's definitely a stage persona, trust me, he's not like that off stage. He handled the drunk bastard (for anyone who was there, we all know who that was in the crowd) politely, but in a "fuck off" manner. He said, "Yes, sir. I understand. We will play '22 Grand Job'. Yes, I heard you the first time." Whoever you are drunk guy, you're a douche bag.
Here's the setlist:
- We Are All Animals
- Man With a Job
- Work Work Work (Pub, Crawl, Sleep)
- The Guilt
- All Too Human
- Open Book
- Dark Clouds
- Ausland Mission
- 22 Grand Job
- Encore: The World Was...
- Something Clicked (which I don't think they played)
I am happy to report that there was a full mosh going on at Bowery Ballroom, complete with a girl stage diving during "Strasbourg." The Bowery hasn't seen this much action since that Steve Winwood show last year.
When I wrote about them last September after CMJ, I titled my article, "The Rakes: Your New Favourite Band," and I still feel that way. I think for those who dismiss them as another seeming endless Franz Ferdinand clone is a shame. In an alternate universe, if there was no other post-punk bands out there, you would love The Rakes. Thus, listen to the music and bounce to their show on their own terms.
Even though Alan and Matthew are a little road weary when I caught up with them before the show, they gave it all tonight. They have a short break before they do a headlining tour of France and England, then it's a summer of festivals. Their next single should be "Promote Promote Promote (Gig, Afterparty, Sleep)."
Okay, onto the Towers of London. What can I say? They're ummm, you know, ummm pretty funny guys. I can't say with certainty if the band was formed as a comedy act or as counterpoint to The Darkness. By the reaction of the crowd, most people were laughing at them. I was laughing at their schtick, which consists of spitting at the crowd, spitting beer at the crowd, spitting insults at the crowd, throwing beer at the crowd, poking fun of someone who was standing there minding his own business and climbing on top of the speakers. I've just never seen a band where spit played such an important part of their performance.
Now if you don't know Towers of London, the band consists of lead singer Donny Tourette, David St. Hubbins, Nigel Tufnel, Derek Smalls, CeCe Deville, Kip Winger, Gary Cherone, Tommy Lee, Bret Michaels and I think a guy who was in Krokus. Just by looking at the pictures you get their vibe. As comedy and as a ode to the long gone days of 80s hair metal, it's amusing for a few songs. It's when a guitar hits you over the head or you get a loogie on your face that it might get tiresome. Their set wore me out, there was just too much going on and to watch out for. It's like, "flying cup of ice, DUCK! Watch out, the another crotch is my face ... again. Be careful, another mic stand is falling over."
As far as the music, it's pretty bloody awful. Didn't like hair metal when I was a kid, and I'm not going to like now, even in an ironic way. I was pretending to get into it so I wouldn't get picked on by the lead singer. They really shouldn't play music, they should just jam on stage and scream at the audience. When it comes down to it, they are a novelty act with costumes, nicknames and stage personas. If I had any balls I would yell out, "Hey, play that song that's good. Oh wait. You don't have one."
With that said, we all survived their set (I think), even though we smell like smoke, beer and spit. Ahhh, the good ole days of concert going.
On one hand, got some good pics... I also wrote about these guys last September.
Boy Kill Boy was fucking loud -- talk about cranking it to 11. A few of their songs were good, "Suzie" and "Ivy" don't remember the last name, but it was about the keyboard player's piano teacher. The keyboards did make a difference, it elevated them to more than just an ordinary post-punk band.
First off was Plan B. Simply put, The Streets meets Everlast. Excellent wordsmith, but each song had the same beat.
Lot of blogs were there, once they get their stuff up, I'll show them much love. It will be one big circle of blogger life. Elton John would be proud. Sleepy time.
- Morning, Modern Age has her stuff up now.
- PSNYC has the story about a guy yelling at Towers of London and then the band injuring a girl with a mic stand. Dick heads.
- My friend Bill has a story about Towers' Donny getting into a shoving match with an MTV2 VJ. Shut the fuck up, Donny.
- The lady who got injured tells her story.
- Heart on a Stick posted some good observations on the night.
- Multi-Beat was also there and interviewed Boy Kill Boy.