Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Blake Edwards (Vertonen) was kind enough to forward this review that he wrote about Saturday's event:

"s.o.t., bloodyminded, billy carter band, gays in the military @ bighorse, chicago

missed the first band so nothing to comment.bloodyminded had one of their most entertaining sets, despiteoverheating (and killing) the PA (and their set) at maybe the 15minute mark and not getting the volume they deserve. mark moved aroundin the audience quite a bit, which probably some folks hadn'tanticipated; not abusive, just festive. he also managed to knock theonly thing not nailed down--the mixer--off the table, but remarkablynothing came unplugged due to that. highlight for me would have beenthe second new song from their next CD, which had something in theprovisional title about an ex girlfriend who had schizophrenia talkingabout sexual abuse as a child. there weren't any lyrics per se that icould discern, but a solid dose of synth pummeling and microphonessquealing away from feedback generated from the PA. another pleasingaspects was ed also came into his vocal "element" more, which I'malways glad to see live, as the lad does have a solid set of pipes.billy carter band sounded a lot like lazy cowgirls circa 1989 to me asI listened to them from the outer room, as i didn't have any punkygarage rock jones to fill (and didn't feel the need to suck in moresmoke as the band did their stuff). they sounded fairlysolid/proficient, but I wasn't really down for their sound at the time.gays in the military is becoming more of a performance oriented dealwith each passing gig, or so it seems. this time, a handful of toplessand pasties covered ladies, plus a small coterie of scantily dressedgals with pseudo-seasonal outfits, were already roaming around thebar, no introductions needed as to their involvement with theevening's events. I was already prepared for somewhat of a lessenedshow since GITM's drummer was not with them anymore; corporal (orsergeant?) chris took over the drums. His drumming ability wasn't somuch the concern as was what would be the lacking synth and screaminghe usually provides. Once the festivities began, I almost felt theband sensed/anticipated people (read, mainly undersexed boys) would bepaying less attention to what the band was doing and more attention tothe "thrill" of seeing boobies flashed at them as the ladies paraded,shook what the lord gave'em, and flung porn DVDs and magazines intothe audience. heck, only one of the band members even got down to thecamouflaged swimsuit which once was standard for the band. In pasttimes, the fab four (or five) on stage were the object ofentertainment, not the supplementals in from of the stage. Don't getme wrong; the gal with the gingerbread bustier that people wereinvited to eat was amusing, and it was almost amusing watching thisone dude stand nearly motionless with a molester grin while staringlasciviously at this one girl's ass as she was piggybacking on someguy. But the fact that the highlight was the sheer novelty and chaosof their finale, a cover of Chicago's "25 or 6 to 4" with solotroffadding to the vocals made this probably my least favorite shows bythis otherwise entertaining ship of fools.


Monday, December 12, 2005

10 December 2005
The Big Horse Lounge
Gays in the Military

Billy Carter Band
Scarcity of Tanks

08. “HEAD”
09. “PRO-ANA”
10. “PRO-MIA”


Rob “Misfits Robby” Kerr - Synth
Ed Knigge - Synth + Vocals
Chris Mack - Synth
Mark Solotroff - Vocals + Synth

Thanks to Chris, Brian, and the rest of Gays in the Military, for asking us to play this show, as well as for the great support at shows this year. Also thanks for asking me to join in on “25 or 6 to 4.” Thanks to our new friends from Cleveland, Scarcity of Tanks, for driving out in such shit weather, to play a show at The Big Horse Lounge. Thanks to the Billy Carter Band, for the crude swordplay. Thanks to Julie Fabulous, for the heartfelt introduction. Thanks to all of our friends, for showing up on a snowy night, as well as for the great support all year. Thanks to Marlene, for videotaping.

Scarcity of Tanks, with Mr. Plastic Crimewave on guest guitar, started the night off with some very welcome, dark, noisy psychedelic dirges, replete with seemingly stream of consciousness lyrics and possibly bad vibes. You have not really lived until Matthew has furtively pointed at you during a show… or picked you up and moved you across the room a bit… in a very different style than Grey, though --- but I still believe I can fly. We were up next, and we blasted through a dozen songs before the PA cut off. I had to finish “Lisanne” a cappella, No Fun-style, so as a result, we did not do the last three planned songs: “TROPHY” - “MIND THE GAP” - “TEN SUICIDES.” We still played for nearly 19 minutes, so maybe it was for the best. It seemed like a solid set (the MiniDisc recording came out very well), the crowd was really responsive, and we debuted a new song from the forthcoming CD. Rob had his “official” Chicago premiere, in front of people who would notice, and appreciate, his recent inclusion in the band… as well as his amazing Larry Clark T-shirt. Billy Carter Band followed us, after the PA situation was sorted out, and they belted out a solid set of heavy, pure, negative energy garage-y punk rock. Finally, Gays in the Military stepped up to the plate in awful Christmas-themed shirts, and proceeded to lay waste to the room. These guys are truly an inspiration… to someone… There was so much pornography flying around the room, the floor was carpeted in shredded pages of skin mags, and shrinkwrapped DVDs were in abundance. I ate some high-density gingerbread bustier. I saw things that would make many a man weep like a little girl. Then they called me up for a wonderful Chicago moment. What a year it has been and what a great note to end it on!