Review: Nice Guys, Teenanger, The Soupcans, Thigh Masters @ Discovery Zone (4/12/13)

Bands: Nice Guys, Teenanger, The Soupcans, Thigh Masters
Date: Friday, April 12, 2013
Venue: Discovery Zone (Allston, MA)

Thigh Masters – Correct name? I hope so. Thigh Masters aka Kurt opens the festivities with some mind bending one mon noise.  Noise – kind of a vague term, but I think noise enthusiasts would dig this. It certainly is loud, so I will call it noise to make it easy for all of us. Kurt Thigh Masters plays guitar and I believe he is accompanied by a drum machine. He also wears a mask and within this mask is a microphone attached to Kurt’s mouth a la Lightning Bolt/Black Pus. I’ve never seen this set up before, so that’s a plus. With that being said, I feel like I’ve seen this performance before and I’ll see it again, just different names. That isn’t to say it’s bad. Kurt Thigh Masters is cool and any local venue/DIY space would be happy to have him.

Soupcans – I’ve always loved Canada. Only been there once and like a good, little American I watched pornography on late night television and ate McDonalds every day. I also bought a present for my grandmother. Soupcans are from Toronto and they are tall, kind-hearted gentlemen. They too enjoy icy cold beers, rock ‘n’ roll music, and perhaps late night pornography and fast food. They will shotgun a beer with your brother, make love to your sister, but when they come home at night they’ll kiss their mothers, and I’m positive that when they are away they buy gifts for their grandmothers.

Fine gentlemen, who aggressively knock your ass out cold on the dance floor with their punk rock music that just greeted my ears in recent weeks. The nicest guy in Allston, Matt Garlick (shake his hand, buy him a drink, give him a high five) introduced me to the mighty Soupcans at approximately 9 P.M. on Friday, March 15, 2013. Fresh off a Nice Guys/Fagettes tour himself, Garlick spoke of a band heading on tour to Boston in the following month. Not usually one for band recommendations, I didn’t know what to expect. I know the guy that recommends bands all of the time doesn’t like band recs, Slutever. What happened next, however, was “a great moment in rock ‘n’ roll history.” Only hearing half of what Garlick said, I was instantly hooked when he mentioned that one of the Soupcans (at this point I thought he was saying “suit cans” too) sings through a beer can! And then when I found out that they were Canadian, my God, that’s it. No more descriptions needed. Perfect band rec. Most kids will tell you something along the lines of “they’re post-punk fused with psych garage punk.” No! We all do it though. But, beer guzzling, swinging, rowdy, Canadian nuts is all I need. It planted an image in my head of the almighty Soupcans. Bandcamped it up and here I am now. Ready to rock ‘n’ roll and you can’t erase those words from history.

Jumping back to this evening, Soupcans open with “Shocked,” a pulsing slammer that shows off the trio’s (classic guitar, bass, and drums y’all) ability to produce fast, pummeling, difficult to describe, but undeniably catchy, raw, punk. Punk in the purest sense. Bestial, no nonsense, straight to the point, simple, but not dumb. No fancy smanchcy bullshit, but not sloppy either, you’re gonna wanna kiss and tell after seeing this band. Lead singer Dave’s vocals are monotone, reminding me of hardcore punk legends, DOA and Joey Shithead’s vocals – also Canadian! Low, baritone, monotone  but simultaneously chaotic, exciting – shouts and screams that captivate my heart. The guitars smoothly roar like a serial killer that poetically hacks his victims to death. Right up in your face – raw – but calculated like the work of Jay Reatard in just about all of his bands. The drums are equally frenetic, drummer Gideon slams his kit with extreme precision, kind of feels like my attempts at playing drums, the thrill of hearing the stick smack the snare drum like a slap across the face, except this guy actually knows what he is doing and can control his destruction.

Soupcans play a sound show and they bash out some of my favorites from their LP Good Feelings including “Shocked,” “Outlander,” and “Deadbeat.” Great to meet the dudes, especially chatting about other sick Canadian bands like The King Khan & BBQ Show and Vomit Squad. Nick knows his Alice Cooper too haha! Great performance, but I wish more people would move and mosh and what not, but still a fun show. Next time will be a wild, drunken, Soupcans riot.

Teenanger – I’ve been calling them Teenager this whole time! What a waste of breath. Ahh well, in the line for the bathroom I notice a bald dude wearing a yellow Suburban Lawns shirt. I vaguely know who they are, late 70s punk band I think. I ask the dude if this is correct and he confirms this. At the time, not knowing much about Teenanger other than the name, which I fucked up anyway, I do not realize who this man is. Moments later, I notice he is singing with his band Teenanger. They blast through a fast, 70’s punkish set. Their music fits very well on a bill with Soupcans and Nice Guys. The singer is enthusiastic, prowling around, hopping into the crowd, making use of the living room space around him. I dig it, but Glen seriously digs it, even more than Soupcans. Speaking of Soupcans, Teenanger also hails from Toronto, Canada.

Nice Guys – Nice guys, eh? Just how nice are these guyz you may ask. Sweethearts. Pizza punks from Bawlston – proudly reppin’ the Boston underground. Tonight, the foursome celebrate one of the best first years I have seen for any band. I thought they had been around for a few years. Over the past twelve months, these pizza punks have played many a show, toured twice, and won over the hearts of Kids Like You & Me, in the process making a name for themselves around town.

Nice Guys are like The Beatles. Four Beatles, four Nice Guys, and everyone’s got their favorite. Ahh, I like them all: Drummer Cam (rhymes with Jam, easy enough), Alex “sick moustache dude” Alexson on guitar, Matt Garlick on guitar – hey isn’t that the guy from Fagettes?!, and Jake Gilbertson – vocals/bass. He reminds me of a young Jared Swilley (Black Lips). Hopping and bopping about, right slab in the middle. He and his bandmates get the crowd moving a little bit with their Germsian take on sludgey garage punk. Alas, we KLYAMERS, have to make it to that damn train station, so we only catch the first few tunes. I want to say I hear “Pizza Bong,” one can only hope. You can hear it and all the jaw droppingly exquisite Nice Guys numbers here:

Here’s a big shout out to some of the kewl cats we ran into tonight. So Onam/ Fast Apple (who put on the show! like their page –, Jen Knight – really nice to meet you!, DJ John Freeman, always spinning the classics like Vivian Girls, Daniel Johnston, George Baker, Tina Turner, you name it.  Tim, if you’re reading this, keep drinking those 40s son. Then, my boy Ian, you and your acid tales. You represent the youth of America, the wave of the future. And of course, the Prof$t, who is always lurkin in the shadows at the best shows.
Here’s a video from this show of the nice dudes playing my favorite NG song, “Cop Walk.”

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