Muuy Biien - I am immediately struck at how the first song's bass line is that of the Stooges '1969', which was easy to catch as that song was played about four songs before this Athens Georgia quintet hit the stage. The vocalist also sounded like he owed a debt to Iggy Pop, although doesn't everybody? But the twin guitars were doing much crazier things morphing these songs into some really intense art punk. I heard elements of MX-80 Sound and the Cravats and others I dare not say as this band was heavier than most of the artier bands of the past. Perhaps more post first wave bands like Savage Republic and Drive Like Jehu are better comparisons. The rhythm section was ferocious as the guitarists either matched the pace or snaked around it with inventive runs. The singer was up to the challenge of keeping pace and these songs were ultimately quite fresh and alive. The breaks were minimal as the music just kept coming, but never quite from the same angle. Unique, really fun, and a receptive dance floor made this opening band's set a real treat.5
Hockey Dad - From the land of Aus, comes yet another guitar-drums duo. I nearly always find this a case of needing one more cook in the kitchen and tonight is no exception. The music is simple and quite effective with powerful guitar riffs taking on pop punk melodies and a drummer that bangs away like he knows there is not a bass player of keyboard. So they do their best to fill the void with loud busy playing. And the songs are good with the guitarist handling all of the vocals. They pull it back just a bit from time to time, but the intensity and sense of fun is there throughout. The crowd is still moving and having a good time, so they clearly know how to push the envelope to create a dynamic live experience. Yet the sound was little harsh, which may be due to the lack of a bass player holding it down. But if you like this minimalist approach, these guys are the real deal.
Facebook photo grab of the Night... or watch out for those commas.