Kuschty Rye Ergot - The Velvet Lounge web site tells me "doors 7:30/first band promptly at 8:30" which translate into Kuschty Rye Ergot hitting the stage at 9:30. So it is another late night at the Velvet Lounge. Kuschty is a John Stanton (Kohoutek) collective which comes out in different forms each time I see them. This time it is just himself on guitar and synth with Scott (Kohoutek) on drums, percussion and synth. They start with a drone that may have been a bit long for my tastes, but the guitar comes out and things get interesting. Scott slips behind the drum kit and they go off for a good while on sort of a space rock jam that is quite engaging. I liked the fuller band sound I saw several months back, but this duo is quite accomplished and delivered a nice opening set that I enjoyed. These two and their trusted friends just about always deliver the goods.
The Vacant Lots - Another duo with guitar and drums. They clearly are fans of Spacemen 3 with their simple riffing in a ringing psychedelic swirl. They do play songs with vocals, although the heavy echo and loud guitar make the words meaningless. Definite drone as most songs just have one riff or maybe one adjustment. Decent enough sound, but lacking something to make me fully engaged. To be fair to this and all bands tonight, this is my fourth straight night of live music after flying back from Scotland the long way on Sunday, so this late start tonight is not exactly helping enhance my usually positive nature.
Screen Vinyl Image - Yet another duo with a husband and wife team with guitars and keyboards that they use in multiple combinations. I really liked the guy's hardcore speed riffing with the loud shoegaze sheets of sound. It really pulled me in and was quite impressive. There were more echoey vocals but good song structure throughout the set. Loud, but sweet and not painful. Great set and a band I will be keeping my eye on. Recommended for sure.
Spectrum - Pete Kember leads this four-piece band from the UK. He and Jason Pierce lead the very influential cult band, Spacemen 3. Pierce has gone on to front the brilliant Spiritualized, while Kember (aka Sonic Boom) has lead this outfit. They stick very closely with the Spacemen 3 formula which is intense heavy riffing with a psychedelic tone and undertones. I liked the theremin placed near his keyboard/mic and guitar spot which he would either reach out and use or move over with his guitar and play to it. His band members held everything together and they covered at least one Spacemen song I believe I recognized, "Revolution", and also covered one by Suicide. I thought they were quite effective and they pulled in a really good crowd tonight. Although if I had my choice, I would take Spiritualized as they breakdown many barriers between genres and do really great things. But I do not have to choose just one, so see them both whenever possible. Believe me, if they weren't worth waiting for I would have left before the set as tired as I was.
Quote from last week: Sorry, I just had a lot of good ones from Scotland including this from a breakfast/lunch place serving up bacon rolls... "Michael Jackson was so disturbed. Where was his family? I mean to color your skin, even down to coloring your scrotum. Where was his mother? Disgusting trashing of your heritage..."