Destruction Unit - If you liked Comets on Fire, and you sure should have, and are still searching out for those few bands that can create that sort of creative racket, you best look this way. Destruction Unit has three guitarists slashing away at thick layers of sludge, shaping them into something that has form and sustance with the rhythm section powering away with pace. The vocals are highly effective in a dark Ian Curtis manner. There's some sort of Iceage/Jesus & Marychain sound working as well with a crazy Acid Mothers freakout jam at the end. If that all sounds like some crazy fun, then yes, that is exactly what it was. This Tempe, Arizona band is worth the price of admission alone.
Milk Music - The DC9 is really packed out tonight, and with three intriguing out of town bands, that is as it should be. Milk Music is from Olympia, Washington like some other band once upon a time, but has its own version of heavy rock on display. The guitars have a real punk rock crunch, while the vocals are spacey with loads of reverb. They fade out their opener with a psychedelic jam which is a real puzzler, but a lot of fun. I get the feeling that this is a punk band that is exploring psyche terrain in the manner of a Black Mountain or Dead Meadow. I am not sure it is fully formed at this point, but it is highly entertaining and there are some magical moments. A little more vocal variety may help over the length of a set as heavy reverb starts sounding like the same note over and over after a time. They did what sounded like a Johnny Thunders "You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory", but I couldn't make out the chorus, so they may have just lifted the chords. It is early in their existence, and with this kind of start, they could be a serious player real soon--oh, and plenty fun for right now.
Merchandise - This Tampa quartet has an even trickier and more slippery sound than the previous two bands. The rhythm section bangs out a near motortik beat, while the guitars loosely move around in a mix of quieter arty moments and grinding passages. The beats change a bit as some songs become quite trippy, yet most have a certain odd pop flair. The vocals are delivered with a dramatic quality that I would classify as Bowie-lite, which is not a knock as they are a cut above that of most bands. There is a bit of fuzz and a playful manner as they shift around styles in a subtle manner that keeps a central control of their material. I feel a strong sense of babbling coming on as this band is rather hard to pigeon hole--always a good thing. It may take a few more times before I can figure these guys out, but based on tonight's large and enthusiastic crowd, I think we all will be getting that chance again.
Quote of the Day: "Wow, at least get my name right." from Newcastle striker Sammy Ameobi after Newcastle's newly hired football Operations President gave a press conference and misidentified him with his brother Shola (and I won't even bother with all his factual errors). It could have been worse for Sammy as here is what he called other Newcastle players:
Jonas Gutierrez - "Galteirez"
Hatem Ben Arfa - "Ben Afri"
Yohan Cabaye - "Yohan Kebab"
Source -- Football365.com