It's been a while since I've updated because not a whole lot has been going on, just the usual suspects.
At the last Thump, they brought in different subwoofers, because apparently they've gotten it in their heads that our very good subs, in their very well designed concrete bunker, aren't good enough. So they replaced ours with rented ones. As far as I could tell, the effect of these was to make it so that if you were standing in the front half of the room, your internal organs were vibrating, but you couldn't actually hear any bass in a musical sense.
You know what it sounds like when you're walking down the street, and some jackass in an SUV full of speakers is trying to prove how small his penis is? Where you can just barely tell that there's music playing, but mostly what you're hearing is the door panels rattling? It sounded pretty much exactly like that.
Apparently they liked it so much that they're planning on doing it every time. Well, whatever, if they want to pay extra to make it sound worse, why should I care?
We've got a full week of interesting stuff coming up, though:
|Sun, Sep 21:|| Flying Tiger Circus: |
This was a fantastic show last year, and several of the same performers are back this time, so I strongly recommend checking this out...
|Tue, Sep 23:|| Crüxshadows + Sunshine Blind: |
Sunshine Blind are a great gothy rock band who have played here twice before (plus, Caroline works here!) I don't know Crüxshadows, but the few MP3s I've heard alternate between "Christian Death" and "VNV Nation", if you can believe that. I'm told they put on a good show.
|Wed, Sep 24:|| St. Vitus Dance + System Syn: |
A pair of industrial/synthpop bands.
|Thu, Sep 25:||Meat, an above-average industrial dance night.|
|Tue, Sep 30:|| God Module, Tesseract7, and Control Theory, |
who have all played here before: God Module is two guys and a laptop; Tesseract7 and Control Theory are industrial rock bands with actual instruments.
Please come and partake of the non-house-music offerings so that we can do more and I don't go insane. Thank you.
Last week, someone threw up in our office fan.
The airflow in the backstage area isn't very good, so we have usually a floor-fan sitting right outside the office door. Some time during the Mix Master Mike show, someone puked right outside the office door, and into the fan. (The office door was closed at the time, so it went un-observed and no righteous ass-kicking could be delivered.) Of course, this means it wasn't a customer: it was one of the promoters or their sycophants. Not that we hold them to a higher standard of behavior (they're just as bad, if not worse, than the customers when it comes to flagrant dumbassery) but, I dunno, I'd figure that if they had one thing going for them, it would be an ability to hold their liquor.
Another neighborhood casualty: Hamburger Mary's is closed (again.) Well, it hadn't been called Hamburger Mary's for a while now; it became "Harvey's", then "Mary's", then just "12th and Folsom", but now it's called "for lease."
There's been a lot of construction work going on inside the former 20 Tank space lately, but I've heard that they're just going to be a dance club, not a restaurant. It's like there's a conspiracy to deprive us of places to eat.
Lots of stuff this week! I've been spending most of my time sorting through the hundreds of pictures I took over the last few days...
- This show was fantastic, as it was last year. In addition to their usual set of geek tricks (a guy who shoved pins all the way through his arm, and the bait-and-tackle suspension show) they also had the plate-balancing Happy Chef, who is just hilarious; a pair of contortionists who did things that human bodies just cannot do; acrobats; and an aerial rope act. Fun stuff.
Oh, and again they would cook a star-shaped brand onto the body of anyone who wanted it (which turned out to include three of our employees this time.) We turned up the exhaust fan for that part, so the the club wouldn't smell like pork.
Tonight I'm giving away an absolutely free poke in the eye with a sharp stick! Just ask.
- Sunshine Blind were great, as always, and I think I finally got some decent pictures of them this time.
I got a kick out of Crüxshadows, but it took a while for them to grow on me. When they came on stage, the singer made this speech in a fake English accent that at first I thought might have been directly from Spinal Tap: "In ancient times, hundreds of years before the dawn of history, an ancient race of people... the Druids. No one knows who they were or what they were doing..." Except it was about Aphrodite or something instead of Stonehenge. I couldn't stop giggling.
In addition to that, their music was, to my ears, mostly indistinguishable from VNV Nation (or any of the many progressive-house influenced neo-synthpop laptop bands who seem to be what most goths think "industrial" means these days.)
So I should have hated the show, right? But I didn't, I enjoyed it! This was because of two things. First, there were actual musicians involved: they had live guitar, electric violin, and one, sometimes two, people playing keyboards. And second, they had a couple of dancers, doing a synchronized routine along with most of the songs.
I think I've mentioned before that no matter what your band is like, it can always be improved by the addition of gogo dancers. Because then there's a performance on stage.
I was never able to decide whether they were joking about the Stonehenge thing, or they really were Just That Silly. But either way, they put on a good show.
- System Syn was yet another "Assemblage VNV" and did nothing for me, but again, they get some respect by actually having someone playing keyboards and guitar instead of having their entire act pre-sequenced.
I really enjoyed St. Vitus Dance -- they played really hard, metal-influenced industrial, which has been sorely lacking in the world lately. Live drums, guitar, and occasional keyboards. Also they had a really good lightshow: nice, dramatic use of backlighting and fog.
- Thursday was a dance night called Meat, which was fun, and had a pretty good turnout. Devon and John and crew put a ton of work into decorating the club with a slaughterhouse theme. Devon took one of my mannequins and painted musculature on it. Also there was some kind of visiting TV-claw-monster. They gave away home-made sausage.
I'd like to make the painted mannequin a permanent fixture, but I'm not sure where to put it where it wouldn't get instantly destroyed.
For the tuesday show, we got around 50 people, and for the wednesday show, around 25, which is pretty sad. The turnout for the Circus was ok, though it was about half what it had been last year.
Still, I'm glad we did these shows. I'm bummed that more people didn't show up (that's kind of the point, after all) but I'd so much rather be bringing bands in than doing house every night.