Show Review: Creaturos, Black Beach, The Fagettes, Magic Shoppe @ Middle East Upstairs (12/11/14)

Review by Joanna Trachtenberg

I guess you could call this Fuzzmas. Illegally Blind mastermind Jason Trefts did it again. 4 of the best bands who all played Fuzzstival in August come together once more for one magical night. First it was Magic Shoppe‘s turn to cast their spell on the awaiting audience. This was their first time ever playing with 4 guitarists. So of course they were louder than usual. I could barely hear the vocals with all of the guitar noise. I don’t necessarily mind that though because I feel like I’m surrounded by both a wave and a wall of psychedelic fury. They played most of their hits. Sadly they ran out of time before they got to Midnight In The Garden Of Evil.

Set-List:
No Place To Go
Dead Poplar
Trip Inside This House
Burn Right Through
Shangri-La In Reverse
All The Way
Haunted HollywoodHere come 1/2 of the Nice Guys to take the stage with Ryan, Melanie, Peachy & the rest of The Fagettes. I am a big fan of their retro inspired fuzzpop. I love their energy live. I noticed that they added a few newer songs to their mix. The swagger came to a climax with the last song about feelin’ good. Ryan and Mel were bouncing around the stage. Throughout the whole show the light shows were going off. Major props to Video Joe and Wax House AV on the amazing visuals. This was one of the best light show performances I have ever seen. I love the combination of the digital projections with the liquid light show.

Set-List:
Jake
National Geographic
Luv
Bad Catholics
Sleep Talk
Street Queens In Heat
On Drugs
WTA
I Wanna Feel Good

Black Beach got everyone wild. This was not only Fuzzmas but also Black Beach’s record release show for their new EP Play Loud, Die. They did a few stompers from that album. There was a major pit in the middle of the Middle East during their whole set. I think I got punched in the jaw. Even worse though at one point one of the light show projectors got smashed by someone getting powerslammed towards the stage. There was a reason why this was all going down BLACK BEACH ROCKED MAJOR COCKS! They are just loud dirty rock n roll which there needs to be a lot more of.

Set-List:
Rats
Ego Death Ritual
In Circles
Born To Lose
You’re A Ghost
Untitled new song
Kreep
Youth Is Out There

Psych rock heavyweights and Boston Music Awards nominees CreaturoS closed the night. (I know all good things must come to an end). They showered everyone with psychedelic bliss sending everyone home happy. They put on a helluva fun show every time and tonight was no exception. I think I had more fun than usual tonight. I’m hoping for more nights filled with this scuzzy goodness.

Set-List:
James Days’ Milkshake
Last Summers’ #1 Hit Single
Hand In My Pocket
Sunrise Wedding
Weird Queen
Going Out In Style
The Mole
The Master’s Dope
Ruff Puff

Boston Fuzzstival 2014 Recap

Fuzzstivall
Date: Saturday, August 2, 2014
Venue: Middle East Upstairs and Downstairs (Cambridge, MA)
Bands: Dinoczar, Black Beach, Gymshorts, The TeleVibes, Beware The Dangers Of A Ghost Scorpion!, CreaturoS, Atlantic Thrills, Abadabad, Magic Shoppe, 28 Degrees Taurus, The Fagettes, Fat Creeps, Doug Tuttle, Ghost Box Orchestra, The New Highway Hymnal

Once again, here’s another show review in spectacularly late fashion! Ahh at least last year’s review was completed merely hours after leaving the show. Can’t win em’ all, but we live to fight again or something like that. Anywho, here’s some fond recollections of my favorite bands’ performances at this year’s Fuzzstival…. oh and a lengthy introduction as to cap it all off. You didn’t think you would escape one of my lengthy introductions now did you??? Haha.

We love going to shows. You don’t need me to tell you that unless you assumed we were masochists this whole time. It’s all been our great displeasure seeing all of your bands perform live year after year. It’s been ever so painful. Though, if it’s painful for a masochist isn’t it also pleasurable? You got me. We’re actually not masochists, we’re sadists. We spew filth and fury. Hate us on facebook.

Festivals are simply shows on steroids or better yet shows in the midst of a nasty coke binge. One band and then another and then another and then another and then another. Sensory overload. All senses are fuzzed up by the end of this shindig. All senses. The Lysergic Factory Lightshow, Video Joe Turner, and  Wax House A/V scrape the mucus off your brain, Emma’s Pizza deliver mouth watering slices, and fifteen of New England’s feistiest tear through what’s left of your withering eardrums. I think that covers all the senses. Ahh well, you get the gist.

We at KLYAM typically cover the fuzzy variety – garage spunk psychaholics.  So, it’s an absolute pleasure to have an entire festival dedicated to this “style” of music. Big thanks to Jason Trefts/Illegally Blind for doing what must be done. We thoroughly enjoyed last year’s Fuzzstival, but the line up this year is even superior: many of our own local favorites and on top of it all, the party takes place at our favorite venue, Middle East.

———— UPSTAIRS ————-

Gymshorts – We scurry into the Middle East, fretting that we may have missed our Providence dawgs in Gymshorts. As we slime into the Mid East Up, I notice a crowded room and Gymshorts setting up to play and I realize I haven’t missed anything. An awesome relief washes over me.  Per usual they launch into “Scumdog” I WANNA GET HIGHHHH AND I WANNA GET STONEDDDD” ya you know.  They shred the usual No Backsies jams then things come to a halt briefly when one of their strings breaks. Hey, rock ‘n’ roll ain’t perfect. They bounce back with an apropos tune for the moment in “Oh Brother.” Catch these shorts on a giant ass tour all across these here United States: https://www.facebook.com/events/250069071850157/
Bandcamp: http://gymshorts.bandcamp.com/

The TeleVibes – Dude, these vibes get right under your skin and crawl around for a few days/weeks at a time. You’ll be telling all your friends and loved ones about how awesome The TeleVibes were at the Fuzzstival. Fuck, your grandchildren.

The Tellies are fuzztastic, but they got a little more than just grit in their wee bellies. They possess a tenacious affection for mind melting psych noise that’s dripping garage snot rockets all over the place. Guitar riffs coming straight from the bowels of hell. That’s old Charlie Northin’ there and old Scott Lorin’. And old brother Christian Hardy packing heat and smacking away on the skins. Sounds like these young men have spent entirely too much alone time with Mr. Dwyer and Mr. Segall. So, I guess then that’s not alone time, ahh well it’s too late to go back now. The past is the past and we’re living in a modern world, whatever that means.

I’ve seen The Tellies in the past, but prior to this Fuzzstival, it’s been about seven months (HOLY SHIT I know, I was shocked as well) and they sincerely sound better than ever. Actually, my favorite band at the Fuzzstival. Dig it. It’s dug. These Tellies be vibin’ so hard. They slap me in the face like a bag of wet dicks. Each guitar lick is a new slap to the face and I suppose the masochist in me wants more. More More More, no wait, wrong fuzz band. Forgive me or not, whichever works. I’ll be seeing The TeleVibes again and again, in my head and in my bed, now that I got me my very own Washed Up EP on cassette! LISTEN to it HERE: http://thetelevibesofficial.bandcamp.com/

Beware The Dangers Of A Ghost Scorpion! – Listen up, you little freaks. Here’s one band you’re not going to FUCK with… ladies and gentlemen, Beware The Dangers Of A Ghost  Scorpion!

I’ve been seeing these fine gents a lot lately. Starlab Fest, Black Lodge, and now here at the Fuzzstival. Beware is the premiere Boston surf rock band, a surf nut’s wet dream. They lean hard towards the nuttier side of the surf realm, fitting in perfectly within this fuzz fest as my friend Dylan likes to call it.

As always Beware puts on a fun, frenzied show, constantly hoppin’ and boppin’ around the stage, leaving the audience on the edge/over the edge. Definitely a band to catch in the flesh sooner than later. Their recordings sound just as demonic though, check them out here: http://ghostscorpion.bandcamp.com/

CreaturoS – Local psych juggernauts, CreaturoS headline the first half of Fuzzstival, being the last band to play at the Middle East Upstairs tonight. The group (as with most of the bands playing this thang) thank Jason Trefts for hosting such an epic event. They rip through an earache inducing set of psych pop that Boston fans have come to know and love.

At one point this dude climbs on stage and awkwardly stands up there with the band for a few seconds.  I even think he’s a friend of the band for a minute. You know how sometimes bands pull up their comrades to sing or play along to a song. Not in this instance. The band smirks and kindly escorts the man off the stage. Perhaps he thought there would be a stage invasion like last year: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yTFptrZH5Mc.

So, that’s the end of the first half of the fest. Oh and check out CreaturoS on bandcamp: http://creaturos.bandcamp.com/

———– DOWNSTAIRS ————

Atlantic Thrills – Providence dawgs Atlantic Thrills are kicking things off right for the second half of the Fuzz. Seeing the Thrillz up on stage here brings me back to the first time I saw them live about three years ago at this very same location opening for Those Darlins. Damn, and many more shows followed!

The crowd is still building up, but those of us that are present are devouring all the punk slime and saliva these maniacs have to offer. My favorite tonight is “Day At The Beach,” a great Summer jam or as Dan Tanner puts it “this song is about drugs and the beach.” Reckless abandon. For mo’ Atlantic Thrills:  http://atlanticthrills.com/

The Fagettes – Illegally Blind seriously rolls out the upper crust of local fuzz and Fagettes is a prime example of that. The group (featuring Nice Guy Jake Gilbertson on bass) pounds through a rockin’ set of gettes classics such as “On Drugs,” “Gonna Die Out Here,” and a bunch of others my fuzzed out dome is missing.

The crowd moves and shakes a bit more during their set, but are still too motionless for my tastes. That’s one of my few qualms about the Fuzzstival. Lack of significant crowd participation/dancing/moshing. Everything else is tip top A ok.

Ryan Fagette is as feisty as ever, prowling around the stage, fighting off some technical difficulties with his guitar. He gives a fiery performance during “I Wanna Feel Good” as he makes his way to the crowd, standing tall above everyone. He fervently shouts  I WANNA FEEL GOOD  directly into various patron’s eyes. He even messes around with the Lysergic Factory’s light show, making a mess out of all dem pretty colors. http://thefagettes.bandcamp.com/

Fat Creeps – FC is fresh off a two week tour with The Lentils. A friend of mine observed that bands always sound tighter when they have just come back from tour and I think that’s true in this instance. It’s like everything else, if you keep persistent, you naturally get better. I’m just happy to finally see the band perform at my favorite above ground venue; I believe this is their first time playing at the Middle East Downstairs. Anyway, definitely one of the better shows I’ve seen from the trio recently. No hesitation, kick out the jams, and raise some hell. Some hell.

I’m at the point now where I don’t really have much more to say about this band, I’ve seen them over 30 times and it’s always been a pleasure. I dig some of the audio assault in the “new” songs from Must Be Nice such as “Party” and “Having So Much Fun,” but I’ll always have a place in my heart for the oldies like “Nancy Drew” and “700 Parts.” It’s all good.  http://fatcreeps.bandcamp.com/

We missed The New Highway Hymnal :( but, if I had seen them, they surely would appear in this article. Check them out regardless: http://thenewhighwayhymnal.bandcamp.com/

So, that’s my recollections. One big final shout out again to Jason Trefts/Illegally Blind.  Like, follow, share, support, do whatever you do on the fascist book, just most importantly GO to the fine ass shows he’s constantly putting on around Boston. https://www.facebook.com/IllegallyBlindPresents

Thanks

Video from TeenageRiotTv

A KLYAMer’s Preview of Boston FUZZSTIVAL 2014

Boston Fuzzstival 2014 organized by Illegally Blind’s Jason Trefts is going down tomorrow (Saturday August 2nd) afternoon and evening at The Middle East Upstairs (starting at 1 PM) and Downstairs (starting at 6 PM) and features exactly 15 bands of the garage/psych/surf/pop variety — exactly the styles of music that we appreciate most around here on KLYAM! Of course this is an event we’ve been looking forward to for months and if you remember back to last year Chris cranked out a review of the event as soon as he got home from it. It is a wonderful thing to see underground rock ‘n roll of this kind making the rounds around local blogs; just head over to the Fuzzstival FB event page to read a bunch of posts about Fuzzstival and the bands playing it.

KLYAM’s pretty energetic about the bands we care about. We’re also eager to see any bands we have not had the pleasure to see yet. I’m just going to say some words about some bands I have seen and really really dig:

GYMSHORTS – Playing at 2:25 UPSTAIRS – Providence scum surf roquers blasted into existence about one year ago, but it just might seem like they’ve been around longer with the amount of shows they’ve been playing around New England and New York. Sarah leads the pack in their mosh friendly jams on vocals/guitar while Devin complements her with fuzzy lead twang. I think this will be about my tenth time seeing them and it’s always a real fun time! [LISTEN]

TELEVIBESPlaying at 3:00 UPSTAIRS – North Shore ass jigglers / ball ticklers – course these words are courtesy of Chris, but I agree completely – playing that slimy Migsian stuff that’s had us in a tizzy since hearing their Washed Up EP and damn that release show is still one for the record books. It’s been seven months since – far too long a wait for us so the anticipation runs highhhhh. [LISTEN]

BEWARE THE DANGERS OF A GHOST SCORPIONPlaying at 3:45 UPSTAIRS – Everybody ought to pace themselves at this point – I mean on any other day these guys would probably be playing at 12 AM and closing out festivities. Two weeks ago they put an end to STARLAB FEST and wow I fondly recall bopping up, down, and around, perhaps at one point falling as they pounded out southern evil Dicky Dale instrumental after southern evil Dicky Dale instrumental. Guess I just suck at describing surf and should stick to bumping into people with a shit eating grin. Must see group! [LISTEN]

CREATUROS – Playing at 4:30 UPSTAIRS – Have seen these new era Boston garage/psych legends (a term I’ll use loosely to let the crowd response to their 2013 Fuzzstival set do the talking) rather intermittently over the past couple of years. I was really won over when they opened for FUZZ at Great Scott last fall. That was a killer set… then just a bit ago they dropped ‘SHORT SHORTS‘ a pure garage pop goldie. Forgive me for not really knowing any of their other songs by heart, I will know that one! [LISTEN]

ATLANTIC THRILLS – Playing at 6:00 DOWNSTAIRS – Alrighty garage bro so you know the Atlantic Thrills, you read about ’em online somewhere. OK yes it was probably here. We’ve championed their rock ‘n roll since the year 2011, about three years before they dropped their first LP (KLYAM recommended obviously). Tripped to Providence a bunch of times to catch them in their abode and have had some really memorable experiences both on stage and off stage in their presence. Very happy to hear that they are kicking things off DOWNSTAIRS (where they once opened for Those Darlins), here’s to another round of sloppy debauchery. [LISTEN]

THE FAGETTES  – Playing at 9:00 DOWNSTAIRS – Without feeling like a local rock n roll snob, I am confident calling The Fagettes the Boston kings and queens of the garage, flower punk style. They have a history of playing with some of the world’s finest rock n roll bands (NOBUNNY, Shannon and the Clams, Hunx and His Punx) and that is surely no coincidence. The energy, vocal trade-offs of Ryan and Melanie, dueling drums, sax here and there, the noisy POP racket, I could go on and on. You wanna feel good. Catch THE FAGETTES. [LISTEN]

FAT CREEPS – Playing at 9:45 DOWNSTAIRS – We’ve seen the Creeps the most out of all the bands at Fuzzstival about three times over, which should not come as a shocker to anyone as we’re intense supporters from way back. They just released their first LP Must Be Nice [pick one up if you haven’t, along with their klyammy debut 10″ of course] and IT’s great! For those who like both the sun and the shade, the fast and the slow, Fat Creeps pack ’em all and their live show is a stellar reflection of what’s got the Americans, Europeans, and Japanese going nuts!! [LISTEN/BUY 10″]

NEW HIGHWAY HYMNAL  – Playing at 12:15 DOWNSTAIRS – What better way to cap off this night than with New Highway Hymnal, emblematic diplomats of the meaning of FUZZSTIVAL. K, didn’t mean to get that deep all of a sudden, except I’m telling the truth here. Psych/garage/surf/noise The New Highway Hymnal can dismantle a Lowell basement and a 575 capacity venue just the same. Don’t think I’ve seen them since Charlie joined on guitar, should be sweeeeet! Heads up crowd you might get bumped in the head by Hadden’s guitar, but you’ll love it all the same. [LISTEN]

Concert Review: Peach Kelli Pop, The Fagettes, Great Valley, The Scamps @ Radio (3/27/13)


Freak Flag Presents
Bands: Peach Kelli Pop, The Fagettes, Great Valley, The Scamps
Date: Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Venue: Radio Upstairs (Somerville, MA)

The Scamps – The Scamps are a straight up fun band. KLYAMER Glen likens them to the Meat Puppets and I can definitely see that. Country mixed with pumped up rock and a slight leaning toward the bizarre. As I noted in the past, The Scamps play a fast set, with each tune rolling right through you.  They open with “Stuck On You,” a catchy little ditty that I recall standing out to me last time I saw them all the way back in February of 2012 at the Middle East Upstairs.  That was an intense performance, not so much from the band, but particularly from some diabolical rice krispie treats given to me from KLYAM buds, Atlantic Thrills. Goddamn, I had a love/hate relationship with those suckers (the treats that is). Mini psychedelic experiences aside, I remember “Stuck On You” being highly memorable, so much so that I thought it was a cover of a 70s  hit song that for some reason I really dug. Long story short, The Scamps are a powerhouse band that will sonically punch you square in the balls, when you least expect it. http://scamps.bandcamp.com/

Great Valley – These two chaps from Brattleboro, VT are up next. They are quite different from The Scamps, and well all the bands on this bill. Though, they do have some definite pop elements to them like the other bands. Great Valley is kind of awkward and off kilter, but hey what two piece isn’t? Wait, did I say awkward? I meant off the hook. Certainly, some fun weirdo pop stuff here. They remind me of Sunset Rubdown and High Places in that mellow yet equally deranged sort of way. Unpredictable. Go on a trip with Great Valley here: http://thegreatvalley.bandcamp.com/

The Fagettes– The Scamps and Great Valley are kewl cats, for sure, but The Fagettes are a KLYAM reader’s kinda band. They dish out vintage rock ‘n’ roll that will make your head spin and your hips shake. I’ve been falling in love with their recordings, but the live show is a whole other monster. There’s five of them up on stage (is there a stage? I don’t think so) and it feels overwhelming, like they’re all gonna grab you or eat you, and maybe in a way their music does. Tonight is no different than my previous Fagettes experiences in that it is a sweaty, physical, and visceral performance filled with hit after hit. I know I sound like some jackass for saying “hit,” and you know what I am a jackass, but pop music is pop music to me and when I go to a show I like to hear my favorite songs, which are like pop hits in my little world. For the most part, Fagettes deliver, playing fast punk rock ‘n’ roll numbers like “Water, Tea, and Alcohol,” “Gonna Die Out Here,” and “I Wanna Feel Good,” with the last one really showcasing vocalists, Ryan Major’s and Melanie Bernier’s abilities to scream their lungs out. So glad, Fagettes play along side Peach Kelli Pop on this wonderful evening, since they are perhaps the most fitting Boston band for the bill. They have mastered and in some ways transcended the kind of garage rock, for lack of a better term, that fans of Peach Kelli Pop, Burger Records, Infinity Cat, and similar bands on or affiliated with those labels would seriously dig. That’s your cue to click on the bandcamp page: http://thefagettes.bandcamp.com/

Peach Kelli Pop–  Ohh boy, Peach Kelli Pop! I can’t tell you how ecstatic I was when I found out that Peach Kelli Pop was hitting up Boston.  We saw Peach Kelli a couple of years back and it was marvelous. Just look at this video from Melody Matters: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-OQSlRc0kY). Those were fun times, but tonight is even better. Peach Kelli aka Allie plays guitar and sings with the rest of her band, bashing out a set chock full of bubble gummy rockers from both of  her albums, which I highly recommend.  Classics like “Do the Eggroll” and “Doo Wah Diddy” are instantaneous and fun to dance to – well that can pretty much be said about all of the songs. I loved hearing those songs before and they sound even better this time around.

In general, this performance is superior and I think the sound system at Radio helps out a lot, but I’m sure relentlessly touring over the past couple of years doesn’t hurt either. The set is like a quick injection of sugary pop goodness. Fast, catchy, rock ‘n’ roll; the songs arrive, tackle you, and then vanish. You’re singing along to “Panchito Blues” at one second and before you know it the riff to “ABC” hits your ears. Other stand outs include “Julie Oulie,”  “Dreamphone,” and “Knockout.”
When the band is about to dismantle their equipment, the crowd demands an encore! To wrap up the show Peach Kelli unleashes a somewhat slower tune and a personal fave in “Lover,” I seriously can’t get enough of those “ooooo ooooo” vocals, alright I know it just looks like Froot Loops in writing, but you have to hear it! I can’t imagine not liking Peach Kelli Pop. What kind of sick, depraved individual despises this kind of music? Killjoys, curmudgeons, mean people, cops, metalheads, ehhh whatever I’ll shut up now, just listen:  http://peachkellipop.bandcamp.com/

Normally, I would be posting a set-list here, but some joker took it before me. Doesn’t he know that I’m the guy that grabs set lists in this town?!

Big shout out to the masterminds known as Freak Flag. They put on this shindig and they put on TONS of  nasty happenings in Boston and they’re the coolest DJs. Get yer grimey hands on their newsletter, it’s zick. http://www.freakflagboston.com/

 

Concert Review: The Fagettes, Fat Creeps, Dream Warrior @ O’Brien’s Pub (2/22/13)

Nautical
Bands: The Fagettes, Fat Creeps, Dream Warrior, The Electric Street Queens
Date: Friday, February 22, 2013
Venue: O’Brien’s Pub (Allston, MA)

Dream Warrior– Never heard of these girls before, which is pretty cool because I think seeing a band live is the perfect introduction. Dream Warrior are an all female, all instrumental three piece and they bash out heavy, headbanging, blues inspired, quasi metal tunes. It’s a slow, sludgey, doomy kind of rock, but it never drags. A few attendees compare them to Metallica, I can see that, especially the first few albums, not St. Anger Metallica or any of that garbage. Glen says they are like the “girl Big Mess.”  I actually haven’t thought of this, but I agree to an extent. Both bands create heavy, all instrumental songs that have the power and volume of a metal band, but with more of a blues, perhaps even hook emphasis in some respects. The crowd response is pretty solid and I am digging them as well. I’ll have to keep my eye out for them in local listings, as I am sure they’ll pop up again sometime soon.

Fat Creeps– Yo dawg, Fat Creeps two nights in a row sucka, that’s what I’m talking about! We KLYAMERS like to jam out with our KLYAM out, lord knows how that works. Last night was at the Salem Cinema, first time I have ever been there. In fact, I have never really been in Salem, place kind of gives me the creeps, no pun intended. Tonight is O’Brien’s, one of the best and most active rock venues in Boston, and this is my third time seeing the Fat Creeps here. More national rock ‘n’ roll and shock ‘n’ troll and jock ‘n’ skoal bands should come through to OB’s more often. Seeing the Fat Creeps though is sound enough for me, being a tremendous fan of the band.

I have a 70s conservative take on rock ‘n’ roll, a select few bands that rule, like when you think of  rock ‘n’ roll you think of these bands. Like one of those infomercials that air in the wee hours of the morning featuring hit songs from the 60s or 70s, I like to think of all of the music I love being featured in a fake ad with some black guy’s low, soulful voice in the background. Someday, that will become a reality! Transitioning back to the present, it’s a real pleasure to see some great rock ‘n’ roll bands under our nose right in Boston. As I’ve said a million times, Fat Creeps are our favorite Boston band and one of our favorites in general. This is the first time I’ve seen them back to back and it’s exceptional.

Performance wise, tonight is pretty solid, not the best from the band, but awesome. “Going to the Party” is quickly becoming one my favorite Creeps numbers, I just adore Mariam’s monotone vocals and how they transition into screams as the song gets heavier. Much of this heaviness stems from the early hardcore riffage coming from the guitars, like a diabolical Dead Kennedys tune. “He Comes In Loudly” is another stand out, especially in Gracie’s mumbly vocals. As always, fun show from your local creeps. See them live, if you haven’t! Or start by listening to them here: http://fatcreeps.bandcamp.com/

Following the Creeps’ performance is the movie premiere of Ali White’s and Lauren Kimball’s Nautical Nymphs. A short film about some wild mermaids and an unsuspecting sailor. It’s a colorful, cool little movie. I suggest you watch it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3pfW0_EIyxA

The Fagettes– The Fagettes are up on stage, but before they play there is a special guest performance from The Electric Street Queens, a kickass duo consisting of Coco Roy on vocals and guitar and the Fagettes’ Melanie Bernier on drums and vocals. They play a couple of tunes alongside the other members of  the Fagettes including their nastiest number, “Dontcha Wanna Work At the Brewary” and like the last time I saw em’ Coco comes out to the audience, playing her guitar on the floor. I am pretty excited for this, cause I dig the ESQ very much and I didn’t hear of their special guest appearance until an hour or so before they hit the stage. Check dem out and like their page!: http://www.facebook.com/ElectricStreetQueens?fref=ts

The Fagettes open with their latest and greatest offering, “Gonna Die Out Here,” and it gets the crowd a rockin’. It’s a smooth, catchy song that showcases the simple drum beats and dual vocals that make the Fagettes an impressionable garage pop group. Their set features most of the hits I have fallen in love with over the past six months, such as “Mystery Pills,” “On Drugs,” “My Girl Looks Like  Johnny Thunders,” and more. They are a fun loving, light-hearted band in the spirit of Hunx and His Punx, Shannon and the Clams, and Nobunny, just the kind of  rock ‘n’ roll we dig around here. This show doesn’t sound as nice as the previous Great Scott show we attended, but there is more of a physical presence, and energy coming from both the performers and audience  and that always makes for fun at a rock show. In particular, Ryan Major hops into the crowd bringing the mic stand with him, dude’s a boss, one of the best showmen around town. They close their set with the classic, “Water, Tea, and Alcohol,” a fast pounder indeed. Haha pounder. Listen to Fagettes, yeah I’m talking to you. http://thefagettes.bandcamp.com/

Set-List:
“Gonna Die Out Here”
“The AA Took My Baby Away”
“Mystery Pills”
“I Kill Him If I See Him Again”
“On Drugs”
“My Girl Looks Like Johnny Thunders”
“I Wanna Feel Good”
“Water, Tea, and Alcohol”

Concert Review: Bent Shapes, earthquake party!, Beware the Dangers of a Ghost Scorpion!, The Fagettes @ Great Scott (1/12/13)

Bent Shapes
Bands: Bent Shapes, earthquake party!, Beware the Dangers of a Ghost Scorpion!, The Fagettes
Date: Saturday, January 12, 2013
Venue: Great Scott (Allston, MA)

Act I: The Fagettes – The Fagettes are a KLYAM band. Period. There are many styles/genres I could attribute to this band, and pretty much all of them we dig, hence why they are a KLYAM band. Rock ‘n’ Roll, Garage, Punk, Psychedelic, you name it, they got it.  Their sound and aesthetic fits perfectly with the punk slime we proudly promote every day on this site, which I honestly can’t say about most of the local bands we see. That isn’t to say other bands around here suck, not at all. It’s just great to see a Hunxian “garage” band in Boston.  We saw them once before performing as Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood for a Halloween cover show, and as much of a blast as that was, we yearned to see them as FAGETTES. Needless to say, I’m pretty excited.  As I mentioned earlier, these guys have nailed that fun, fun rock ‘n’ roll sound down pat, but they also have a real cool look to them.  Especially Ryan Major (vocals, guitar, harmonica);  he is simply one suave motherfucker. He rocks the shades and from a distance he looks like Jared Swilley, but up close he looks more like John Holmes, either way he is the man and he is a great singer. Ryan shares vocal duties with Melanie Bernier (one half of one of the best local bands, The Electric Street Queens – check them out!), who also plays drums. But, Melanie isn’t the only one that sings and plays drums, oh no. A wonderful gentleman by the name of Peaches commands the kit in the back and provides some sick backing vocals. The bass player, who’s name escapes me (sorry dude!) is enthusiastic as he always is, love that guy. But, wait there’s more.  Matt “Nice Guy” Garlick is riffing on guitar. In fact, before the band plays their set, I can hear Matt jamming on The King Khan & BBQ Show’s “Waddlin Around,”  killer song.  I should also mention that Matt is completing the second half of his double header tonight, having just played at the Butcher Shoppe with his other badass punk band, Nice Guys, wowzer! The Fagettes’ set consists of all the fun tunes you’d want to hear, oldies like “Catholic Riff Raff,” “Mystery Pills,” and “Water, Tea, and Alcohol,” as well as their latest offering, “Gonna Die Out Here,” one of their sexiest to date.  They also play all three cuts (“If  I See Him Again,” “On Drugs,” and “My Girl Looks Like Johnny Thunders”) from last summer’s EP If I See Him Again.  With “On Drugs,” they really make it feel like a place you come to visit, where the fun never stops.  This song and every song sounds terrific. The Fagettes live is a visual, auditory monster. With all these vocals and percussion jostling me, I feel like I’m being trampled by a lion. The sound is that big, perhaps not that terrifying though, but my ears are equally pleased and damaged.  I can’t recommend Fagettes more, going back to what I started saying at the beginning of the review that they are a KLYAM band, meaning they play rock ‘n’ roll the way it  ought to be done: short, but simple pop songs, fun, filthy, and catchy. Sweetness meets sickness. Like, Shannon and the Clams, there’s enough loud punk and soft pop for all to enjoy, and usually somewhere in between. I am exhausted, but Fagettes can keep me up all night. Be awesome like me and listen to all their crazy music here: http://thefagettes.bandcamp.com/

Act II: Beware the Dangers Of A Ghost Scorpion!– Now, here’s a sweet band. With a name this enormous and eccentric, they ought to send me into an oblivion. And like their name they are both fun and puzzling, but in a pleasant way. ‘Beware’ is a five piece and each member is dressed the same: bandannas covering their noses and mouths, blue jeans, and black shirts bearing a picture of a presumably dangerous, ghost scorpion.  The set is entirely instrumental and with the exception of Big Mess, I typically am not fond of this style of music, but these men capture my attention and entertain me for the next half hour. They rock out pretty hard, playing early 60s surf rock with a bit of an extra kick, in fact a lot of emotion and physical energy. This is especially true of the man on tambourine. This dude bashes away at the tambourine, unlike anyone else I’ve seen before, I can’t imagine what his hand looks like after each gig.  But, he goes beyond that in his showmanship. He makes the crowd move and shake and he is the leader of all this hype and excitement in the room, as if he is holding the crowd in the palm of his hand, perhaps a cliched comparison, but he  just holds this undeniable command over the crowd. What’s even more fascinating and unique about this man and the group as a whole is the lack of vocals. As I mentioned, they are an instrumental band, but they literally never speak throughout the whole performance. No words, just music. Actually, let me rephrase that, words do appear at various moments, as they are scrawled across a sign that the tambourine player triumphantly holds, reading: BEWARE THE DANGERS OF A GHOST SCORPION!  This guy gets an A+ for the night. Solid set, sick band, but I don’t know if this is the kind of music I see myself listening to at home alone in my room, with that being said, I hope to see them again in the future and I hope others catch their set too, for this is a live show you won’t want to miss. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8EmoBSVPoXs

Set-List:
“Red River Tombstone Hustle”
“Heads Will Roll”
“The Lover’s Curse”
“The Nameless One”
“Caught Dead”
“Cateye Glasses”
“We Welcome The Living, But Only If They Come Here To Die”
“Satan’s Invisible World”
“13 Stabs”
“SOS”
“Denton County Casket Company”
“Haintmaker”
“The Legend of Goatman’s Bridge”

Act III: earthquake party!– Earthquake Party’s a perennial rock force in Boston, and a very talented band at that.  Their set is loud and noisy, but with some pop beneath the heavy volume. Their keyboard driven songs mixed with grungey/screaming vocals remind me of the Lost Sounds and Yo La Tengo.  There’s a harsh quality to it, but it’s also satisfying and never overstays its welcome. Listening to their bandcamp, I hear the songs more clearly, they have some real great pop numbers here. I’ve seen them a couple times before and each show has been an enjoyable experience.  Definitely a KLYAM recommendation: http://earthquakeparty.bandcamp.com/

Set-List:
“Nails + Hammertime”
“One More Night”
“Pretty Lil Hand”
“Fast Girl”
“Escape Artist”
“Daydream Jenny”
“Brains”
“Pretty Trash”
“Tramp”
“Little Pet”
“Hello Weirdo”

Act IV: Bent Shapes – Like earthquake Party! Bent Shapes are familiar faces around the Boston rock scene and they have earned a reputation for creating catchy, mellow, pop songs that rank up there with the finest in music today. So yeah, they’re one of my favorite bands right now and it’s great to see them in front of a packed crowd at the Great Scott. Great Scott is the first place I saw Bent Shapes (well Girlfriends) many, many moons ago, opening for another brilliant, underrated pop band, Harlem. At the time, I didn’t really pay attention to local music, for no particular reason, I just didn’t. Girlfriends stood out to me though, I think the first local band that I really dug. Flash forward to the present. They sound excellent and they play some of their best songs including the sunny “Leave It Till You Need It,” and their recent flexi, “Panel of Experts” and “Bites and Scratches.”  They have a somewhat soft pop style to their craft, but they rock just as hard as all the other bands. The set closes with one of my all time favorite songs, “I Was Here, But I Disappear,” which always gets me super ecstatic, there’s just no way of describing my love for this song without sounding over the top. Perhaps, the best performance I’ve seen from Bent Shapes. Check them out, if you haven’t already. http://bentshapes.bandcamp.com/

Set-List
“Big Machines”
“Panel of Experts”
“Boys to Men”
“Spazz”
“Bhead”
“Wut?”
“Space”
“What We Do Is Public”
“Bites and Scratches”
“Leave It ‘Til You Need It”
“Brat Poison”
“I Was Here But I Disappear”

Things I’m Excited For In 2013

Atlantic Thrills LP?! – YA! Rhode Island’s premier punk slimers have already recorded an outstanding batch of songs and have showcased several new ones over the past year. An LP is on the horizon, no doubt; I can only imagine dropping the needle on such 12 inches of greatness. As everyone knows, this band is a monster live. But imagine rocking out to the Dutroncy “On My Mind,” the shouts of OOOHHH OOHHHH and stunning guitars in “Light Shines,” AND the best of all worlds, the one and only “Acid Rain”. All on one LP!

The Return of Black Lips to Boston – Nothing has been announced yet regarding this, but it seems inevitable. It has been over a year and a half since they played here (and several other cities in the US that they regularly swung by)…far too long for rabid fans like us. Pretty much all of their shows that I’ve been to rank really high up in the ‘best live experience’ category so yeah, I’m not nuts, they are incredible.

Seeing The Fagettes As The Fagettes – It’s kind of sad that a night like this has not come sooner. I’ve seen The Fagettes as Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood, but now its time for the real deal. And with a new lineup and sound that’s better than ever (the words of Ryan Fagette), I can’t wait for this!

Fat Creeps Split 12″ On Feeding Tube – Seeing as they released the best EP I heard in 2012 and were among the most entertaining live bands that I saw, there should be no surprises regarding my excitement about this. “Daydreaming,” released via music video earlier this month, is the Creeps hardest hitting tune to date. I wonder if the other tunes on this upcoming 12″ will be faster like that or more of a variety like the EP. Whatever way, I have a feeling this will be awesome.

The Growlers @ Middle East Upstairs/New Album – The Growlers stood out more than a lot of bands do when I got the chance to hear them for the first time, a little more than three years ago. At that time, they had released their mega Are You In Or Out?, which is loaded top to bottom with their reverby take on psychedelic rock and roll. I was like damn, I’ve got to see these guys live. And waddaya know – February 2010 @ TTs – they came through on their big ole school bus. I remember that show quite well, for there were more band members than people in attendance. It was a snowy Tuesday night. Nevertheless, it was really fun. I eagerly await their MidEast Upstairs show and their new album due out in a few weeks!

Better Than Something: Jay Reatard Package – It was unfortunately just announced that this was being delayed until February 2013. I’m pumped to watch the film again, but what I’m even more psyched on is the LP and the booklet.

The King Khan & BBQ Show – It is a great thing to see Mark Sultan and King Khan back together playing as The King Khan & BBQ Show. Whether 2013 brings new material, more touring, or what have you, it is simply nice to see them back together in one of my long-time favorite bands.

The Migs – This is another sort of general one, but The Migs are one of the funnest bands I’ve seen and heard. It goes without saying that they will be playing some amazing gigs this upcoming year and their ultra strong recorded output keeps growing and growing. I don’t know what to look specifically forward to, greatness itself, OK!

New Nobunny LP On Goner – ‘Course there’s not much info available regarding this, but the fact that this is a thing is beyond awesome.

The Orwells Touring – I imagine they’ll be coming here! As far as new bands doing the garage/punk thing nationally, The Orwells deserve the wave of attention they’ve been getting. They are real good.

My Top 3 Singles/EPs Of 2012


1. Fat CreepsFat Creeps EP – This is by far my favorite EP of this year. It is crazy good. Every song is special in its own way and, on that note, it is tough to compare Fat Creeps to other bands. The music is downright catchy first and foremost. “Leave Her Alone” is the capstone with its top-notch harmonies and surfy guitar solo, but there’s really something to love about all of ’em, such as the endings to “700 Parts” and “Horoscope,” the punch of “Cherry,” and Mariam and Gracie’s vocal showcase in “Secrets” and “Fooled”. Fat Creeps played several shows in 2012 and they’ve been garnering notice locally, nationally, and internationally. It is easy to see why with this talented trio. We saw them about a dozen times this year and were bummed out about the shows we couldn’t make. Yeah, they’re that great!


2. The Maine Coons – The Maine Coons 7″ – The Maine Coons – the hidden gem of underground garage/punk – released their s/t debut a couple years back. That was a favorite, landing on our year end lists. Two years later there is this 7″. All songs on this 7″ are on that LP. Coincidentally or not, they are top tier with reference to the album. I remember getting this in the mail and playing it several times in a row. For days. It’s a masterpiece recalling the King Khan & BBQ Show, if that dude Leo Chips had been on keyboard since the beginning. I’m not sure I’ve heard a 7″ that gets the job like this one does in a long time. “Uniform Choice” is the most outstanding, in my opinion, but as I’ve made clear…you can’t go wrong with any of ’em.


3. The FagettesIf I See Him Again 7″ – Fagettes are a band that I had heard of prior to listening to this 7″…at least the name. How could one forget? Anyway, this is a delightful release. Singers Ryan and Melanie trade words, with a keen sense of good ole rock and roll charm. The three songs from this release are recorded damn well, capturing all that fun. I especially dig “My Girl Looks Like Johnny Thunders,” with the organ and other great instrumentation. No wonder why they’ve made a name for themselves around here. Can’t wait for more!

Honorable Mentions:

Nobunny – Maximumrockandroll EP
Kal Marks – Piss of the Century EP
Gremlins UK – Gremlins UK 7″

Band of the Week: The Fagettes

The Fagettes – one of Boston’s rock and roll jewels – left a mighty fine impression on us with their latest 7″ If I See Him Again and did the same when they performed covers of Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood at the big Halloween extravaganza that went down last weekend.

The band has putting out quality tunes since 2010 — special shout-out to 2011’s The Fagettes, Vol 2 three minutes of brilliance “When I’m With You”. Ryan and Melanie split singing duties and this cool back-and-forth is one of their many highlights – gotta mention, too, the saxophone/harmonica on If I See Him Again!

I agree with what Chris said in the live review, I’m beyond excited to see Fagettes perform again!

Bloghttp://thefagettes.blogspot.com/
Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/pages/F-A-G-E-T-T-E-S-USA/286468578066089
Bandcamphttp://thefagettes.bandcamp.com/

Concert Review: Fat Creeps, Earthquake Party!, Fedavees, Fagettes Halloween Show @ Rosebud (10/13/12)

Bands: Fat Creeps, Earthquake Party, Fedavees, Fagettes
Date: Saturday, October 13, 2012
Venue: Rosebud (Somerville, MA)
Comments:
Act I: Fagettes as Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood– The Fagettes are one of the hottest bands in Boston right now, so naturally I am more than excited to see them live for the very first time! Tonight, however, they are not the Fagettes… instead we are taken back a few decades to a simpler or perhaps weirder time when the music you heard on commercial radio didn’t just flat out reek like a steaming pile of feces. Oh no, one could flip the dial to the soulful, sexy voice of Nancy Sinatra and my main man Lee Hazlewood.  Well, those good times haven’t ended and the band recreates at least some of that good old pop magic of yesteryear. Furthermore, I appreciate the way they inject their own modern day aesthetics into the mix, adding some deviant flavor to an otherwise innocent set. By the way, I can’t forget to mention that while the band (and each band this evening) plays a creepy Horror flick is projected in the background complementing their freakiness. For Fagettes, I believe Night of the Living Dead is playing, but I might be wrong on this one? Overall, I dig this performance and I really love their set up too, which includes saxophones and two (standing!) drummers. Yeah, fuck all those lazy drummers that remain seated whilst performing! Dave Goldberg would be proud… Anywho, I’m getting off topic, but I can now testify that The Fagettes are one helluva a live band and I hope to see them playing original material in the near future. http://thefagettes.bandcamp.com/ Yo, check out this badass video and all its badass brothers and sisters on You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9-Q7g44-fA

Act II: Fedavees as The Wipers- I have to admit I am not too familiar with either Fedavees or The Wipers, but I have known of the latter since I was a young fella, thanks to Mr. Kurt Cobain, whose band will be making an appearance later. My ignorance aside, Fedavees are nasty and deliver a kickass set that evokes passionate singing in at least a few of the Rosebud’s attendees, so they must be doing something right. For their performance, I believe it is Blade that has the honor of being backdrop # 2 tonight. I’d rather not see Blade again, but I would enjoy attending another Fedavees show. Check out their Bandcamp page here: http://thefedavees.bandcamp.com/

Act III: Earthquake Party! as Nirvana– As soon as I see Earthquake Party hit the stage, it brings me back to August 2011, the first and last time I saw Earthquake Party, until now. I remember these dudes and their sheer, abrasive batch of noise pop tunes. To make things even spookier Evil Dead is playing in the background! EP is definitely a solid band to be covering Nirvana, my early teenage wet dream band. And while I don’t climax on this evening, I am truly invested in their performance, particularly enjoying the various heavier, more aggressive Nirvana cuts such as “Scentless Apprentice,” “Radio Friendly Unit Shifter,” and my favorite Nirvana song “Drain You.” Earthquake Party dish out all the screeching vocals, endless feedback, and lack of concern for the well being of one’s own equipment necessary to fulfill a proper Nirvana set. Personally, I would have liked to have seen a bit more of the band’s own personality shine through the covers, but nonetheless a fun and riveting performance that thankfully forces the crowd into a frenzy. Just check out this video here, in fact the whole set can be seen on You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yS18SeNZlA0 Boy, if I just had five minutes alone with that Where’s Waldo motherfucker…. In the meantime, I’ll have to listen to this: http://earthquakeparty.bandcamp.com/

Act IV: Fat Creeps as The Ramones– It’s always beautiful when two great bands come together, like a marriage made in Heaven. Essentially two of my favorite bands have merged on this evening when the Fat Creeps perform as The Ramones! Not to mention one of my all time favorite films, The Shining, is playing in the background. The creepiness begins when the trio blast right into Ramones signature “Blitzkrieg Bop,” and indeed the kids are losing their minds as Joey Mariam gleefully shouts- moshing and bopping and plopping along to the mile a minute classics. “Beat On the Brat”  is next and in fact – with the exception of a few tunes – they play most of the Ramones’ debut album. Arguably, The Ramones are the greatest rock ‘n’ roll band of all time and certainly a long time favorite of mine, so hearing all these songs executed in a nearly flawless fashion hits real close to home. It’s easy to get caught up in Ramones hysteria (and I do), but in many ways this is still a classic Creeps performance; I especially love their harmonies in songs such as “Judy Is A Punk” and “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend.” With this in mind and just the overall joyful, positive response from the crowd, I think their set is the finest of all tonight. Admittedly, I am excessively biased in my position, but biases aside I am glad everyone is having fun, cause isn’t that what it’s all about anyway? Ahh, I’m starting to sound like a Little League coach now. Seriously though, sickest Fat Creeps show I have ever experienced!
P.S. I dig Jim Leonard’s exclamation: “God Bless George Bush!” I’m sure Johnny would be proud of ya!
http://fatcreeps.bandcamp.com/