My Top Ten Shows of Twenty-Thirteen

So, here we are again. 2013 feels like a blur, a fun blur though. It just seemed to truck on by so damn fast. It didn’t feel like it was all that long ago when I was making my year end lists for 2012. I must say, every year gets better around here and 2013 was definitely our best year. We met tons of people and went to more shows than ever before (significantly more). With that in mind, I will leap off into my top ten favorite shows from the greatest year KLYAM has experienced thus far…

Storm or Howl
Storm or Howl

10) TIE!: Boston Underground Summit VI @ Cambridge Elks Lodge (9/15/) & The Beets @ The Whitehaus (11/26) – I would start a top ten list with a tie. I simply could not leave out either of these shows from my top ten, so fuck it here’s both. Firstly, this was my first Boston Underground Summit and it was a totally unique live experience for me. The show was set up as a round robin in which a band would play one song and then as soon as they were done another band would play a song and so forth until about 9 different bands had played a song, and then it went back to the first band. My head’s getting dizzy just writing this – it was indeed a dizzying experiment; constantly walking back and forth between all 3 spots in the Elks Lodge (where 3 separate bands were each set up). I compare it to an aggressive wine tasting meets a live, physical playlist/mix. In any situation, it was refreshing and broke down any hint of monotony that may have been creeping in on my fairly consistent show going consumption. My favorite bands/performances included Storm or Howl, Funeral Cone (this one left me bleeding!), Dylan Ewen, and R. Nordac’s Crying Lessons.

Holy shit, the mighty Beets. It took us two hours to get to the holy Whitehaus, but we made it just in the nick of time to catch Los Beets who came all the way from Jackson Heights, Queens, New York!! As you may or may not know, The Beets are one of our beloved KLYAM bands and this year we caught them in the flesh twice within two weeks! This was a strange show for several reasons. We were running late and I feared that we would miss The Beets, having journeyed so long for nuffin. When we arrived at the Whitehaus (for our very first time, by the way) there were few if any hellos and it was near darkness – plus we’re half blind anyway. Seconds pass and those smooth, transcendent Uruguayan voices rang through my ears and down into the depths of my bloody soul. All the blood I have puked since I found out I have gas in my veins. When the set finished, we had to flee once again to catch that dirty old train. It all happened so quickly, like a drug, The Beets drug. I know y’all would like a piece of that! REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/11/27/review-the-beets-the-whitehaus/

Nice Sinclair
Nice Guys

9) FIDLAR, The Orwells, Nice Guys @ The Sinclair (10/23) – This was a nice slammer.  It’s always fun to see a local favorite (Nice Guys) dazzle an audience of newcomers and it’s all the more exceptional when they are sixteen and rambunctious! The Orwells make my liver shiver and quiver OR that’s all the alcohol? Anyway, we’ve loved these dudes for years and they put on an excellent show. They have this real clean cut exterior to them kind of like The Strokes and Arctic Monkeys, real polished rock ‘n’ roll, but beneath there’s a slimy underbelly that represents some of the bands (Black Lips, Jay Reatard) we grew up and threw up on ourselves. And FIDLAR, I’m just happy you and your fans didn’t break my nose. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/11/15/review-fidlar-the-orwells-nice-guys-the-sinclair/

Clams Great
Shannon and the Clams

8) Shannon and The Clams, The Fagettes, Atlantic Thrills @ Great Scott (11/20) – This list is a testament that we’ve been blessed with a plethora of excellent shows this year, but I can honestly say only a select few are what I would dub a “stacked line-up” and this here is one of them. Our two favorite New England based rock ‘n’ roll bands (The Fagettes and Atlantic Thrills) on the same stage as one of the best in the whole land, the fabulous Shannon and The Clams. I saw the Clams earlier this year and, while that was a great performance, this time around the crowd went a lot crazier and that always makes the difference. The band’s cover of Del Shannon’s “Runaway” alone made my night :). REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/12/29/review-shannon-and-the-clams-fagettes-atlantic-thrills-great-scott-112013/

7) Guerilla Toss, Fat Creeps, Nice Guys, Designer Halloween Show @ Cambridge Elks Lodge (10/19) – Halloween is usually a good excuse for everyone to let loose, get wasted, and eat a shit ton of candy. Oh yeah, and to dress up like their favorite bands and play a set full of bizarre covers. That’s my favorite part. G Toss took to the role of one Meatloaf, Designer dropped down to their skivvies and cranked out a noisy set of Blink – 182 numbers, and Fat Creeps destroyed as the legendary Cramps. My favorite performance by far was the Nice Guys as The Mummies. Being somewhat of a garage junkie, I’d kill to see The Mummies and I felt like this came inches away from the real thang. Alex Mum demolishing his keyboards was priceless. Poor keyboards, they never had a chance. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/11/08/review-fat-creeps-nice-guys-designer-guerilla-toss-cambridge-elks-101913/

Wavves

6) Wavves, King Tuff, Jacuzzi Boys @ The Sinclair (10/1) – Wavves is one of those bands I’ve cherished over the years. One of the few bigger bands I still enjoy. I wasn’t overly enthusiastic with their latest record, Afraid of Heights, but it has grown on me. Studio work aside, this band still kills me live. It’s as if these songs were made to be heard exclusively live. From Wavves’ inception, there’s been a great anthemic feel to their music and this show at Sinclair is enough evidence for me that they can still kick out the jams like the best of them. It was also a pleasure to finally see King Tuff and Jacuzzi Boys, bands we’ve been aching to see for a few years now. And on a personal note, I was happy to chat with Wavves’ members Stephen Pope and Alex Gates about their past (and future) in the magnificent Memphis bands The Barbaras, Girls of the Gravitron, and Cretin Stompers. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/10/04/review-wavves-king-tuff-jacuzzi-boys-sinclair-10113/

Ty Bowery
A photo of three sexy men

5) Ty Segall @ The Bowery Ballroom (8/30) – What up New York City? We voyage to NYC once or twice a year to see some of our favorite bands. This time it was the man, Ty Segall, the global ambassador for rock ‘n’ roll. If rock ‘n’ roll had a representative at the UN it would be this man. For this show/tour Ty and his bodacious band played an all acoustic set, performing the album Sleeper in its entirety as well as some old classics such as “Girlfriend.” I’ve never seen kids (including myself) mosh and stage dive to acoustic music before and I may never again. Only you Ty, only you. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/10/08/review-ty-segall-bowery-ballroom-83013/

Hunxxx
Hunx and His Punx

4) Hunx and His Punx, Hunters, The Fagettes @ Brighton Music Hall (8/23) – Let’s face it we’re fairly predictable around here –  but that’s NOT a bad thing! because we are consistently enthralled with gorgeous music, at least I think so. It’s true! Hunx is a long time KLYAM favorite and a must see live band (seriously do it!). Just writing about Hunx gets me all revved up and ready to go. This year the band morphed into ultra punx with the release of their epic, early hardcore punk ode Street Punk, and they brought all the piss and vinegar with them when they destroyed our fair city last August.  The set’s most memorable moment actually came from a couple of kinky crowd members, when a young man was accosted by a topless middle aged woman and the two proceeded to slobber over one another for the remainder of the show. I will never be able to listen to “Lover’s Lane” the same way ever again. “Just gotta touch you and squeeze you, and make you mine/I want to hold you til the end of time.” Yeesh, did they have to take it so literally?! Stellar set from Fagettes as always. Hunters were cool too. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/09/09/review-hunx-and-his-punx-hunters-fagettes-brighton-music-hall-82313/

atlantic thrills bbq

3) Ravi Shavi, The New Highway Hymnal, Atlantic Thrills “Rock ‘n’ Roll BBQ With Psychedelic Sauce” – We saw quite a bit of shows in Providence, RI this year and every single time we came to see our chief punk slime animals in Atlantic Thrills. Mix them up with fellow Providence soul machines Ravi Shavi and our Boston psych creatures The New Highawy Hymnal and I’m one happy camper. All of this madness was set to the background of the TRIPPY Lysergic Factory Light Show! I don’t think I’ve ever “danced” more in my life,  charming some attendees, perhaps frightening most. Those were fucked times, fun times. I woke up the next morning covered in dirt and blood and my dick hurt a little bit (only a little bit).  In hindsight, it was the perfect summer night. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/07/27/review-ravi-shavi-the-new-highway-hymnal-atlantic-thrills-in-providence-71313/

2) The New Highway Hymnal, Atlantic Thrills, Polaroids, The Real Tom Hanks @ Wilder Zangcraft (2/23) – Once again, The New Highway Hymnal and Atlantic Thrills throwing straight up wild shows! This show took place at one of my favorite DIY spaces, a tiny basement in Lowell that was overwhelmingly consumed by 50 or more plastered college kids all accompanied by the perpetual, visual mindfuck that is the Lysergic Factory Light Show. NHH demolished my skin and bones as can be expected at Lowell basements shows. But, on this night my sweet, sozzled eyes have never seen such a fantastic, frenetic show from Providence’s finest, Atlantic Thrills. It was great to sing/scream along to all the songs, slam back pbr after pbr, and smash into my peers for a couple hours. In my primitive state of mind, I think I screamed “Lies” and “Demolicion” at the band about two hundred times. Lunacy at its most depraved. The Real Tom Hanks and Polaroids were both exciting and ethereal in their own rights. A memorable night in my life to say the very least. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/03/08/concert-review-the-new-highway-hymnal-atlantic-thrills-polaroids-the-real-tom-hanks-wilder-zangcraft-22313/

1) Hassle Fest 5 @ Cambridge Elks Lodge (11/7-11/8) – How could this not be number 1? This was/is the pinnacle of local underground music. A two day festival showcasing some of the best, most groundbreaking, and above all invigorating bands both at home and across the nation. So, as I’ve said before, it’s pretty much a microcosm for everything the Boston Hassle promotes all year long. Every single day. And we couldn’t salute y’all enough. I’ve found that several local music fans (some of which played the festival themselves) walked away with similar feelings as my own. I know we KLYAMERS have never seen anything else like it, just a constant barrage of band after band after band. It felt intimate and gigantic all at once. Unforgettable. My favorite sets included Fat Creeps, Guerilla Toss, Lightning Bolt, The Beets, and Kal Marks. REVIEWhttps://klyam.com/2013/12/13/hassle-fest-recap-118-913/

So, that’s that. Top albums of the year coming up next.

Review: FUZZ, CCR Headcleaner, CreaturoS @ Great Scott

OCT_2013 001

Date: Monday, October 14

CreaturoS: People arrived early and in large numbers to see locals CreaturoS on what would, of course, be a fun night of rock ‘n roll entertainment. I’ve seen CreaturoS on a few occasions, in a lil ole Allston shimmy, at the MidEast Upstairs, at Fuzzstival. At O’Briens. At Great Scott on this night – I can say I had my most enjoyable CreaturoS experience. They were loud, they were proud, and the songs just had a certain meat to them that seemed to be previously lacking. The guitar solos were virtuoso quality, one after another it seemed. You’d have to be stiffer than stiffs not to groove around. Maybe I was just not in a moving mood at the previous gigs or something. While the crowd didn’t flood the stage during “James Days’ Milkshake” as they did @ FUZZSTIVAL, I got the feeling that that could have happened at any point. This was an opening set to remember.

Set- List:
“James”
“Love Corner”
“Sunrise”
“Last Summer”
“Always Mind”
“Know I’m Wrong”
“Charlie Brown”
“Short Shorts”
“Ruff Puke”
“Beach”

CCR Headcleaner: I think the only way I could describe CCR Headcleaner is transcendent. With their own light show and a relentless flurry of noise, pounding, squall, I haven’t seen a group serve up a psychedelic sludge stage show quite like CCR. This wasn’t really for me, though, call me a wussie all you want. I kind of like the fact that they never relented and just went full force through their whole set, which felt like it was at least an hour long. Oatmeal crackers can do that to you, kids. I checked these dawgs out before and after the show and I’m diggin on their recorded stuff. I may not be physically prepared for a Headcleaner show. Someday I hope.

FUZZ: For a dude who hadn’t been to Boston in years, Ty must have felt a little comfort playing among a dense, sold out crowd. I’ve praised the dude on this very cyberformat countless times since being swept away with Melted in ’10. So to finally see him perform in Boston with FUZZ …what can I say. You might fall into two camps, if you’re reading this review: you either went to this show or you didn’t. If you did, your mind was blown, you were deeply staring at the stage with a smile, nodding your head. Or you were in on the action, shaking around like a nut. I’m not even sure what songs FUZZ played or didn’t play, there was some differentiation, but it was hard not to get absolutely lost in Charlie Mootheart’s tormenting axing. Keep singing Ty and banging hard, but check out that solo! WTF!!!!!!!!!! I’m into the whole FUZZ thing – though metal and hard rock aren’t my go-to styles – but if you are really into those things, you probably walked away from this show, thinking to yourself, damn this might have been the greatest thing I’ve seen in a while. And I didn’t have to go to the DCU Center. wait, what. I feel you people. I know what that’s like. Loose Sutures, What’s In My Head, This Time I Got A Reason, ya ya ya you know them all.

Review: Ty Segall @ Bowery Ballroom (8/30/13)


[Photo by PSquared Photography from NYCTaper.com, where they recorded this show live. Check out the audio stream at NYCTaper.com]

Bands: Ty Segall, Chris Cohen, David Novick, ARP
Date: Friday, August 30, 2013
Venue: Bowery Ballroom (NYC)

Ty Segall – We the KLYAM make an annual (or sometimes biannual) trip from Boston to New York City to see our favorite bands, and this time we’re coming for Ty Segall (again). Before the show starts Glen and I meet up with our favorite guy in Queens: Coolie Rich. After hitting up some local bars and pizza joints, we depart for the Bowery Ballroom to see the monstrous Ty Segall whip through his latest feat, Sleeper in its entirety.

Ty Segall is a household name around here, so it’s always a blast to see him live. Initially, I was perplexed by the concept of an acoustic Ty Segall set, having experienced two rowdy, highly energized electric sets from Ty in the past. But, when the band (which includes Ty Segall Band drummer Charlie Moonheart) hits the stage, it’s just as electrifying as ever. I know it sounds cheesy and nuts, and it sort of is, but Ty and the whole band make it work.

Although this whole set is acoustic, there is the inclusion of drums as I noted before and this certainly makes the difference. It’s not a wimpy acoustic ballady bullshit kinda deal. This is still very much rock ‘n’ roll. If John Belushi came across Ty, he wouldn’t smash his guitar to smithereens, he’d shotgun a beer and stage dive into the crowd of twenty somethings and incoming freshmen college students alike.

Indeed as Ty concludes the Sleeper set things get a bit more fiery as he prowls through with a cover of David Bowie Classic, “Moonage Daydream,” and a select bunch of his own heavy classics. Songs like “Caesar” and “Girlfriend” get the crowd all riled up and a fine mosh pit ignites within seconds.

With the help of some gentlemen I plant my two feet up on the Bowery Ballroom stage, only to plummet right back into the beer soaked audience, thankfully able to catch my fall. I lose a shoe, babes help me find the shoe. We make out. I find Glen he’s making out with babes. All at Ty Segall! It sounds like a Ronnie Nordac number… Needless to say, it’s a great journey as always. Ty Segall for life.

Best Of 2012: LPs and More!

year-end-celebration

In a few hours it will be 2013, but before I enter the new year I have to look back at my favorite releases in 2012. The following are my top ten:

1) The Barbaras- The Barbaras: 2006-2008 (Goner)

2) Fat Creeps- Fat Creeps EP (Self-Released)

3) Black Lips- Black Lips Live @ Third Man Records (Third Man)

4) Cumstain- White People Problems (Burger)- Okay, not officially released, but still, a favorite of mine.

5) Yankee Power- Zoo Traffic (Self-Released)

6) Hunx- Hairdresser Blues (Hardly Art)

7) Ty Segall- Twins (Drag City)

8) Gravys Drop- For the Love of Gravy (Burger)

9) Maine Coons- Maine Coons 7″ (Stencil Trash)

10) Fat History Month- Live at the Bruce Manor (http://fathistorymonth.bandcamp.com/album/live-at-bruce-manor-super-xxx-ebition)

2013 shall be a year of great releases I predict.

My Top Shows Of Twenty-Twelve

I saw more shows this year than any other (47 total) and all of them were FUN . The following is a list of my top ten (most fun) shows all year:

10) The New Highway Hymnal, Creaturos, Leamers, The Migs, Nice Guys @ Big Stink (10/6/12)
Damn, this was a solid night. I mean with the bands on this bill, how could it not be? Going in to this show I only knew NHH and The Migs, but I came out a fan of local stalwurts, Creaturos and Nice Guys, and our neighbors to the North, Montréal’s Leamers. Kids bashing and bopping around like they ought to. I’ll link you up to the KLYAM review: https://klyam.com/2012/10/09/concert-review-nice-guys-the-migs-leamers-creaturos-new-highway-hymnal-big-stink-10612/

9) The Migs, Nice Guys, Cult Fluorescent, Slimers, Chillcity Icon @ Wilder Zangcraft (11/24/12)
Best Migs show I’ve seen! Nice Guys played a sick set of Coachwhips covers and it was great to see the experimental one mon band Cult Fluorescent again. This show was also my introduction to the mighty Migsian two piece, Slimers and the twisted no wave/noise duo, Chillcity Icon. https://klyam.com/2012/12/06/concert-review-the-migs-nice-guys-cult-fluorescent-slimers-chillcity-icon-wilder-zangcraft-112412/


8) Hunx and His Punx, Heavy Cream, Radio Control @ Great Scott (4/2/12)
I’m a Hunx freak, so words can’t describe my excitement for this show. Having missed the past two Hunx Boston gigs :( I’ve waited for two and a half years to see the band live again. The first time back in October ’09 was opening for Jay Reatard and this served as my intro to Hunx. This time around was even better because I actually knew and loved all of the songs. Throw in Infinity Cat noise makers, Heavy Cream and Somerville rockers, Radio Control and you have one of the finest shows all year. https://klyam.com/2012/04/04/concert-review-hunx-and-his-punx-great-scott-4212/


7) Fat Creeps, Earthquake Party, Fedavees, Fagettes Halloween Show @ Rosebud (10/13/12)
2012 very well could be called the year of the Fat Creeps, especially on this site. We’ve seen a dozen Creeps shows this year, more than any other artist. In fact, I think I’ve seen them more than any other band I’ve seen. Every show has had its own special quality, but for Halloween they played a set of Ramones covers and the crowd ate it up. It was the marriage of two of my favorite bands, and on top of that there were stellar sets from Earthquake Party! (Nirvana), Fedavees (The Wipers), and The Fagettes (Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood).
https://klyam.com/2012/10/16/concert-review-halloween-show-featuring-fat-creeps-earthquake-party-fedavees-fagettes-rosebud-101312/


6) On Broadway Fest 2008 @ Dirty Douglas/Ant Cellar (5/5/12)
I haven’t been to any music festivals, except this one, well and the first On Broadway Fest, but I arrived at night for that one. Therefore, this show was a unique experience. It was a blast seeing 15 or so bands all in one day, especially with memorable performaces from Fat History Month, Big Mess, The New Highway Hymnal (shit water yay!), and Guerilla Toss – I literally felt the Guerilla Toss, woooo. https://klyam.com/2012/06/08/concert-review-onbroadway-fest-2008-5512/


5) No Age, Make It Up @ Chum’s Coffeehouse (3/10/12)
KLYAM and No Age go way back, way back before there even was a KLYAM. The first show we saw at Middle East was No Age, and that took place in 2008. They were one of the first of our beloved, HONORARY KLYAMERS. As popular as No Age is, they still carve out their own DIY aesthetic and playing a little Coffeehouse in Waltham is a testament to that. Some of the best moshing/crowd surfing I’ve seen all year! https://klyam.com/2012/03/12/concert-review-no-age-chums-brandeis/


4) Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, K-Holes @ The Well (9/22/12)
This is one of the few shows I have seen outdoors. I need to experience more of these! Outside on a rainy night in Brooklyn with a thousand or more bodies. I usually prefer smaller gigs, but Ty Segall’s music is so gigantic it feels right in this setting. Of course, this show is also special because this marks my first and only experience with Thee Oh Sees, one of America’s greatest live bands. Can’t wait for the next NYC trip and/or Ty/Oh Sees show. K-Holes, stay solid. https://klyam.com/2012/09/23/concert-review-ty-segall-thee-oh-sees-k-holes-the-well-92212/

3) Ty Segall, White Fence, Strange Boys @ Space Gallery (5/14/12)
Ty it is again! You just can’t stop this guy from popping up on our year end lists. Ahh, our first Ty Segall show ever! An event in heavy anticipation for nearly two years. The Space Gallery is one of the finer venues in the New England area that I have attended: larger capacity without that corporate rock feel, art gallery, steady rock ‘n’ roll, and two dollar PBRs! Yeah, so if the show above at the Well felt like a big time House of Blues event, then this Space Gallery show was more akin to a rowdy, packed Black Lips show at the Mid East Downstairs. And of course, Strange Boys were better than ever!
https://klyam.com/2012/05/15/concert-review-ty-segall-white-fence-strange-boys/


2) King Khan & The Shrines, Hector’s Pets @ Brighton Music Hall (7/23/12)

As far as showmen go, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone that competes with King Khan. We were blessed this year to catch Khan and all the classic Shrines at a sweaty, fun filled show this past July. It’s just one big party y’all. https://klyam.com/2012/07/25/concert-review-king-khan-the-shrines-brighton-music-hall/

Who will be number 1?…..

NO NO NO NO NO!!!
NobunnyTyOhSeesNYCSep2012 009
NOBUNNY!!!!

1) Nobunny, Bad Sports, Xray Eyeballs, Liquor Store @ Living Bread (9/21/12)
For the past three years, the almighty Black Lips have filled the number one slot in this category. Alas, we did not see them this year, they had bigger plans – touring the Middle East. Beautiful, those kids need em’ more. Fortunately, we witnessed somebunny else on stage, this bunny we’ve also consistently seen the past 3-4 years, and he’s never let us down. 5 Nobunny shows deep and this was the best. I felt like I was watching Darby Crash or Keith Morris, but singing bubblegum and garage. I love that feeling, when you look up at a bunnyman in his underwear and say to yourself “this is the only kind of rock ‘n’ roll that matters.” https://klyam.com/2012/09/24/concert-review-nobunny-bad-sports-xray-eyeballs-liquor-store-living-bread-92112/

Ahh what a year, 2012, the best I’d say. In this year I saw the following exceptional/favorite bands for the first time (some of which I noted above): SKIMASK, Bleached, Smith Westerns, Dirty Virgins,  Fat Creeps, The Migs,  Ty Segall, Beach Boys,  Bent Shapes (as Bent Shapes), Colleen Green (two nights in a row!), Thee Oh Sees, Nice Guys, The Fagettes, The Electric Street Queens, Yankee Power.

And now I’m off to bring in 2013 with Fat Creeps,  The New Highway Hymnal, Color Channel, and Yale, MA at Great Scott. Peace.