-- Nine Inch Nails, Last
So, I should have written this DAYS ago. Yeah, yeah. Meph's a slack-ass. Get used to it.
First off, I went to Love Triangle's Summer Fun event back on 6/10. All in all, a fun little get-together. Melting Girl and Tomas Diablo were spinning through the night.
The Blue Macaw seemed a very... tight venue. But very few people were upstairs, so that was probably quite a bit of that sensation. If you're of a poly persuasion, I hope to see you at the next Love Triangle event. They seem to be a "once a season" event, so... Fall?
The next night, 6/11, I went to the Red Devil Lounge to experience Front Line Assembly, 3 opening bands AND a DJ.
Venue: The Red Devil Lounge. All in all, a fairly awesome place. Cozy upstairs. Nice bar (and mini-bar upstairs). The bartenders were awesome folks. Definitely don't miss their "Strong Island" Iced Tea. They aren't fucking around when they say strong. Totally worth the $9+tip in my estimation (it's the City, dude... you're not going to find anyplace selling hard or mixed drinks for less than $8).
My only complaint: Restrooms. See the RDL has 3 bathrooms, each one a unisex single-person room. No big deal, right? Well, the first restroom is by the front door. And it turns out that one gets a line. Why, you ask? Well, because the other two bathrooms are on the opposite side of the bar... Right up next to the stage. You know. Where everyone hangs out during a show. And once you wedge yourself through about 60 people packed liked corpses in a mass grave, you can't really get back out again.
I say this from personal experience, as I made the trek right before FLA started their set. So I spent the rest of the evening up by the stage... Awesome right? Well, not so much. See, I never planned on being that close, so I didn't have earplugs like EVERYONE ELSE UP THERE. My ears were still ringing when I went to lunch the next day.
The other issue with the restrooms? Well, as a man I probably shouldn't have noticed; but a lot of women were going in and out, so I couldn't help but realize that drunk dudes at bars are even less likely to lift the seat before pissing and, since they're drunk, their aim is infinitely worse.
So, ladies? I apologize for the rest of my sex. I'm really sorry that we're so fucking gross.
The show was awesome. It started late because FLA got stuck in traffic coming over the Bay Bridge into the City (big surprise), so the opening acts got a little cut, unfortunately.
Started with Hardwired, who I had not heard before. I would describe them, at least in performance, as Pantera if Pantera were a lot more industrial. They kicked the show off right and got about 5 or 6 songs in for their set.
Then we got Cyanotic. I'll be honest, Cyanotic got a little shafted. Since the show was running so late, they only got about 3 songs before having to end their set. And since I was at the merchandise booth buying a fuck-ton of CDs for $10 a pop (it's my personal kryptonite... seriously - I don't give a shit about band shirts, but if you have CDs for $10, I'll blow almost every fucking dollar I have to pick up as many CDs as I can), I missed most of the set when I had to run my mass of new purchases back to my car (so I wouldn't have to hold them all damn night).
So, I'm really sorry guys. What I heard sounded awesome, and I bought two of your albums for good measure!!
Next up was Dismantled, who burned through about 30 minutes before they had to bail due to time constraints. But they were good songs and they had good presence and activity while they were up on the stage. All in all, they were bad-ass and a joy to watch.
Then we got a DJ break. DJ Accucrack played for about 20 minutes. He was okay - he didn't really move me a whole lot and I think I'd have preferred it if the time had been given to another band (like Cyanotic, perhaps?). I mean, he was a DJ in a mostly full house with no real dancing room at a show where people were in attendance to see bands perform. So, nothing personal against him (I mean, he was a pretty good DJ), but meh.
Finally, we got some Front Line Assembly.
Last time I saw these guys was 13 years ago at a Halloween show they did with Switchblade Symphony, Spahn Ranch, and Kevorkian Death Cycle. At the time, Switchblade was the only band in attendance I had even heard of... But FLA blew my spats off at that show and I've had a lot of respect for them since.
And Saturday's show was certainly no slouch on their behalf. If you're unfamiliar with Front Line Assembly, the best way I can describe their music is Industrial-Punk... and they're positively fucking awesome at it.
As I mentioned earlier, I ended up stuck on that side of the RDL after having to use the restroom - so I got up right on the other side of Inkel's keyboard set. Being stuck never sounded so metal.
My understanding is that FLA doesn't make it out to this side of the country much, so if you get a chance to see them, you should really take it. They put on an amazing show.
Just remember to have some earplugs if you value your hearing.
-- Mr. M.