Not so sure to put it mildly that I really want to have "a couple beers" and such with a dude who has a kid and baby mama drama that's involved him screaming at the lady on the next street over and calling her a hillbilly whore, and whose body is covered with bad tattoos and bar fight scars, who gets all offended when I say I'm on my way out to meet up with some friends and can't hang. I wish I could be more assertive but he's already been drinking and is a whiny shade too close to belligerent and him taking five minutes a few weeks ago to pump up my flat bike tire evidently means wanting something in return so I stay diplomatic, make the quick exit and try not to feel super creeped out.
But it's a beautiful night and I drive out to the east side to meet up with some folks and fellow DJs for a night of heavy tuneage... the Kyuss/Sabbath worship of the 3 SG'ed Electric Lucifer, the doomy riffage of Gates of Slumber (Aesop's summary here is apt), who my friends were there to see and didn't disappoint.
I was there mostly for headliners Hammers of Misfortune, which I stumbled across on the Internets and fell in love with because despite not being super big into the more progtastic strains of metal, I dig their sound and songwriting, which kind of reminds me of some unexplainable convergence of X and something 70's and British, must be the male/female vocals and the keyboards, I'm not sure. Would have loved to hear this song but it was still a solid set, even if the frontman's non-singing stage presence reminded me of hardcore shows from my teenage years.
(photo courtesy of this guy on twitter)
The sound for all seemed bigger than the venue, which is what I like about Grog shows as a rule, that I can see bands that play big festivals a few feet away on a small stage and get too shy to say hello (what does one say to Carrie Brownstein when she's standing right behind you anyway?)...
There were maybe 15-20 people there including members of the openers, which made me feel kind of bad for the bands involved, and descriptions heard from the stage and from the crowd involved metaphors like cancer ward, sleeping, dead, empty, due to the moments of absolute silence between sets when the jukebox wasn't getting fed with the Stooges and Minor Threat.
Some of us like yours truly are introverted souls who prefer to do the standing-still than get all crazy. No wonder less folks come through here anymore, since it seems there's a better draw for Hot Topic-core than heshery for grownups. Due to my lack of "cred" I've gotten some flack in the past for not "supporting the scene" (as in, not getting drunk while watching your lousylocal band), but none of those people were in attendance even with an unbelievably low $7 cover. At the end of the night me and a couple black metallers were kind of standing there in disbelief over at the merch table wondering how we just watched three solid bands and no one was there, so we attempted to compensate by picking up some CDs and t-shirts and all but apologizing for the lack of Clevelandian rocking. It must suck to play the hell out of your songs every night to a handful of people in places that aren't Brooklyn.
Drove home with the newest record spinning in the car, got the crap scared out of me by some dude walking the dog in the middle of the street at 1 in the morning who yelled at me and I was unmotivated to argue, slept in an extra half hour and have been alternating mugs of coffee and chocolate to stay awake today...