Thursday, June 17, 2004

The nervous splendor of anticipation...

The above is more than just a Pengo reference. It's dangerous to want something. Life is often just a vague chess board with no real rules and far too many pawns, but closer examination reveals plenty of rules, some made by da man, some self imposed, with and without the aid of deities.

So what's my effin' point? No idea. No, my effin' point is I went with some friends to a rock showww, a rilly big shewww, but not that big: Montreal's Unicorns, Arcade Fire and another band which escapes me. Everyone there was dealing with his/her own expectations, drinking up, chit-chatting, standing, sitting, smoking, rolling...

Openers Arcade Fire were the big surprise of the night for me. They were a young groop of nerds and cuties, 7 or so, sounding a whole lot like a new wave version of an Elephant 6 band, or a wackier version of the Pixies, which means they reminded of early Elf Power. Live, it was an impressive, droney harmonic pop sound with enough "edge" to satisfy my punkometer.

But, HEY! I was there for Elf Power, I mean the Unicorns, as were most of the capacity crowd, and having seen them before, I KNEW what to expect! They were allright, nothing too incredible in the larger scheme of things, yet good enough to prove amazing at three different points in their 55 min set. Few bands get such funky chunks of freak-pop from the post Beefheart/Velvets canon. Having seen them before, and simply having been around the block, I also knew what to expect banter wise and was not surprised when one of the Uni's shouted "Hello, DALLUUUHSS" over and over even though we were all in Denton. This made me chuckle to no end--Dallas is just down the road--but apparently other people were gettin' angry, and a bit pissy, and I found myself scoping the nearest emergency exits as the fire-trap scenarios played over in my mind. Yes, it was damn hot in that place, but the quality of little/big shewww justified my sweat, bebe. Moral of the story? Never expect more than a sarcastic dismissal.

In different news: The Swans are one of the greatest bands in history, more to come on that front. New Bardo Pond w/Tom Carter CD on 3-Lobed is amazing, surpassing their collab work with Roy Montgomery. Joy Shapes is also a remarkable work, me thinks. Let's hope it's not a parting shot.

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