Review: Earthless, Kikagaku Moyo, JJUUJJUU at the Sinclair in Cambridge, MA 3-17-2018

Earthless sign

There was nothing about this show that would have led you to believe it was St. Patrick’s day in Boston, unless you were riding the T and saw amongst other things, a girl sitting across from me with an amber colored fluid in her Polar Springs Sparkling Water bottle.

I kept flip flopping on whether or not to go to this show, but decided at the last minute to go with hopes that I could still get a ticket at the door. There was no traffic on my drive to Alewife and it was a really fast train ride to Harvard Square. In no time, I was at the Sinclair for this pretty stacked lineup that consisted of JJUUJJUU, Kikagaku Moyo, and headliners Earthless. I bought a ticket at the door, dropped my coat off at the coat check, and ordered a beer just as JJUUJJUU were just hitting the stage.

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JJUUJJUU

JJUUJJUU are, much like a lot of bands I’ve seen, a group I first saw at Austin Psych Fest a few years ago. Based in Los Angeles, their music is full of reverby psychedelic drenched goodness. They played for just over half an hour, but man, it was great!

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Kikagaku Moyo

Japanese psych band Kikagaku Moyo, whose name I have trouble pronouncing, but translates to “geometric patterns”, are another band I caught in Austin before and really dug them. With enough members on the stage to make it look pretty cramped up there, they played a set where the songs seemed to start out a bit mellow and before you knew it, crashed like a giant psychedelic wave washing over the audience.

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Earthless

As soon as I saw the crazy psychedelic visuals provided by the excellent Mad Alchemy, I knew we were all in for a treat. San Diego’s Earthless, who were draped in swirls of patterns and colors, hit the crowd hard as they went right into “Godspeed” and kept the heavy guitar riffs coming for the rest of the night. Playing mostly instrumental stoner rock to a sold out crowd that was really feeling it and I’ll leave it up to you as to what exactly “it” is, they held the room’s attention for the entirety of their set.

They finished out the night with a very heavy cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Communication Breakdown”, which was pretty loud and intense with most of the crowd singing along. Honestly, I didn’t want it to end, but like all good things, it had to.

This was an amazing night of music and I’m glad I ended going. It was a pretty quick ride back to Alewife and my eyes are still reeling from those visuals!

Earthless 2018 tour dates:

May 31 – Detroit MI @ El Club *
June 1 – Nelsonville OH @ Nelsonville Music Festival
June 2 – Louisville KY @ Zanzabar
June 3 – Morgantown WV @ 123 Pleasant Street #
June 5 – Asheville NC @ The Mothlight %
June 6 – Atlanta GA @ The Masquerade %
June 7 – Spartanburg SC @ GroundZero %
June 8 – Orlando FL @ Will’s Pub %
June 9 – Tallahassee FL @ The Wilbury %
June 10 – Baton Rouge LA @ Spanish Moon %
June 12 – Houston TX @ White Oak Music Hall %
June 13 – Austin TX @ Barracuda Austin %
June 14 – Ft. Worth TX @ Ridglea Theater %
June 15 – Memphis TN @ Growlers %

*: with Timmy’s Organism and The Octopus
%: with Here Lies Man
#: with Hill Giant

Kikagaku Moyo 2018 tour dates:

Nov 07 – Gorilla Manchester, United Kingdom
Nov 08 – Scala London, United Kingdom
Nov 17 – Café Bad Bonn Düdingen, Switzerland
Nov 19 – arena wien – verein forum Wien, Austria
Nov 21 – Loppen, Christiania KØBENHAVN K, Denmark
Nov 23 – Fasching Stockholm, Sweden
Nov 24 – Blå Oslo, Norway
Nov 26 – Hafenklang Hamburg, Germany
Nov 27 – Ancienne BelgiqueBrussels, Belgium
Nov 30 – Sala Upload Barcelona, Spain
Dec 08 – Paradiso Grote ZaalNieuw-Amsterdam, Netherlands

JJUUJJUU 2018 Tour dates:

Jun 05 – Columbus, OH EXPRESS LIVE!
Jun 06 – Chicago, IL Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island
Jun 07 – Lakewood, OH Mahall’s Locker Room
Jun 08 – Pittsburgh, PA Stage AE
Jun 09 – Sterling Heights, MI Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill
Jun 10 – Indianapolis, IN The Farm Bureau Insurance Lawn at White River State Park
Jun 12 – Cincinnati, OH PNC Pavilion at Riverbend
Jun 13 – Milwaukee, WI Cactus Club
Jun 14 – Maplewood, MN Myth
Jun 15 – Bonner Springs, KS Providence Medical Center Amphitheater
Jun 16 – Camdenton, MO Ozarks Amphitheater
Jun 18 – Lincoln, NE Pinewood Bowl Theater
Jun 19 – Denver, CO Lost Lake Lounge


Jun 21 – Missoula, MT KettleHouse Amphitheater


Jun 22 – Redmond, WA Marymoor Park


Jun 23 – Bend, OR Les Schwab Amphitheater


Jun 25 – Troutdale, OR McMenamin’s Edgefield Winery


Jun 28 – Avila Beach, CA Avila Beach Golf Resort
Jun 29 – Berkeley, CA Greek Theatre


Jun 30 – Lincoln, CA Thunder Valley Casino Resort & Amphitheater


Jul 02 – Salt Lake City, UT Salt Air Pavilion


Jul 03 – Las Vegas, NV Downtown Las Vegas Events Center


Jul 05 – Los Angeles, CA Greek Theatre


Jul 06 – San Diego, CA Cal Coast Credit Union Open Air Theatre


Jul 07 – Phoenix, AZ Comerica Theatre


Oct 12 – Perris, CA Moreno Beach

Review: Mac Sabbath, White Dynomite, The Humanoids at the Middle East 3-22-2016

Sign

There was a lot of hype surrounding this show from the moment it was announced a few months ago. It sold out pretty quick, but I managed to get a ticket after the Middle East released a few extras on the day of the show. I made my way to Central Square as usual, for what should be an awesome if not strange night of music. Despite getting to the Middle East downstairs pretty early, there was already a pretty big crowd waiting for the first band of the night to go on.

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The Humanoids

Boston’s The Humanoids were up first. These guys had were straight up punk metal and it was great! They had quite a few fans that made their way to front of the stage, singing along with every song. This was a really great way to start the night.

In between sets, I ordered my usual Jack’s Abby Hoponius Union and wandered around a bit before White Dynomite went on.

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White Dynomite

Dressed in white suits as if they just played a wedding or birthday party, White Dynomite took the stage and brought the energy level in the room to 11! The only way I could describe their sound is funk metal, which in turn, had the crowd moving non stop through the whole set. They reminded me a little bit of The Vines. They were really fun and seemed to be having a good time playing to a full house that was ready to party.

As I grabbed one more Hoponius Union, a curtain hid the stage as the night’s headliners, Mac Sabbath were getting set up. A few people were really got into the spirit of the night, such as someone dressed as Colonel Sanders and another person wearing a Burger King crown along with a lot of seemingly older metal heads in jean jackets covered in patches.

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Mac Sabbath

Sure, the idea of a Black Sabbath cover band dressed as freaky satanic McDonald’s characters is a gimmick, but it’s a fun gimmick that was done very well! They started out behind a curtain as the beginnings of a version of “War Pigs” called “More Ribs” began and immediately had the full attention of the sold out crowd as singer Ronald Osbourne (I see what you did there!) escaped from a straitjacket. With what sounded like a parody of Ozzy, there were lots of stories and jokes in between the songs. Other songs had titles such as “Cherries Are Fruits” (Fairies Wear Boots) and “Frying Pan” (Iron Man) and they ended with “Pair a Buns” (Paranoid). People were starting to filter out a little early to catch the T since it was a weeknight, but there was still a decent amount of people at the end of the show.

This was a strange but very fun night of music and all of the bands totally rocked. If you didn’t leave this show with a smile on your face, then you don’t know how to have a good time. Upon entering Central T stop, there was a broken train attempting to pull into the station and a very unhappy group of passengers waiting to get back home. One good thing to come out of that kind of experience is that you make new friends pretty quickly, and about 45 minutes later, I was on my way home after a pretty awesome night. 

Review: Holly Hunt, Mono at the Middle East Downstairs 6-13-2015

Sign

I took the T on this fairly warm night into Central Square for a rare (at least for me) show at Middle East downstairs. It’s always kind of weird to be there since most of the shows I go to are at the upstairs. Once I got inside, Holly Hunt had just started, so I ordered a Harpoon UFO White and found a spot to watch the band.

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Holly Hunt

Miami’s Holly Hunt are Beatriz Monteavaro on drums and Gavin Perry on guitar and the two of them make a lot of very loud noise. With a heaviness that builds up into a slow wall of guitar and drums without any lyrics, they never stopped between songs. This band was intense!

After their set, I ended up getting a Sam Adams Lager, after the bartender, who was really cool, suggested I might not care for the Harpoon Dark (which I’ve had before, but couldn’t remember if I liked it). He gave me a sample and was right. At this point, a most of the crowd made their way to the front of the stage as Mono were getting set up.

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Mono

I first saw Mono, who are on tour from Japan, at Austin Psych Fest last year and really liked them. As the band came out to a cheering crowd, they took their places and began to play. Starting out slowly and building up to at times, a frenzy of sound, there was a very cinematic feel to the music. In fact, the air vent above me, combined with some of the more ethereal tinged music, helped to set the mood for the night. I don’t think there was a single person that wasn’t fully mesmerized by the music.

After Mono finished, there was a really long line at the merch table in the back. Since the night ended pretty early, I made a pit stop in Harvard Square for some of my beloved Tasty Burger (I highly recommend the Big Tasty with bacon) for some food. This was an amazing night of really cool music and Holly Hunt and Mono are both amazing live bands that I would definitely recommend seeing if you have the chance.

Review: Doze, Boogie Boy Metal Mouth, Marconi, Guillermo Sexo at the Middle East Upstairs 9-29-2013

With it being a Sunday, the Patriots playing, and the finale of Breaking Bad, this was a rough night for any band to have a show in the Boston area. I arrived at the Middle East Upstairs, where there was much less of a crowd than I expected. I grabbed a Sam Adams Octoberfest , then took a spot in front of the stage and waiting for Boogie Boy Metal Mouth to go on. Unfortunately, I had missed the opening band Doze.

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Boogie Boy Metal Mouth

A coworker, who I also ran into at the show, had told me about Boogie Boy Metal Mouth a few months ago. This duo consists of J. Ring who does the rapping and Emoh Betta who took care of the scratching and beats. Using rock, metal, and blues backing tracks with heavy bass, distortion, and reverb, it was a pretty interesting sound and worked really well. Never really standing still and even jumping off the stage into the crowd at times, you could tell these guys were into it. The set ended a little more quietly with rapping over a blues rock track.

I went to bar to get another beer, this giving the Harpoon Munich Dark a try. It was smooth and went down nicely..a good choice.

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Marconi

Marconi were up next and this was their last show ever. To be honest, I had never heard of them, but they played pretty low key indie rock and I was really getting into it. The band seemed to be enjoying themselves on stage by cracking jokes. I kind of wish I known about them sooner because they were really good.

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Guillermo Sexo

This was a record release for the night’s headliners, Guillermo Sexo. Playing songs from their new album “Dark Spring“, including “Meow Metal“, “Dark Spring“, and ending with the nearly 8 minute long “Coyote“, the new tracks sounded great live! The band seemed to go off into some indie rock jams at times and it was great!

All in all, it was definitely worth missing Breaking Bad (which was on when I got home) to see a bunch of really good local music. I picked up Guillermo Sexo’s new album “Dark Spring” which is excellent and a t-shirt because, hey why not?

AS220 Foo Fest 2013 in Providence RI

I had a huge dilemma as to which show to go to. There was the Fuzzstival in Cambridge, which had a great lineup, but I have a soft spot in my heart for Providence and Foo Fest. I decided to keep my annual tradition of hitting up AS220’s Foo Fest just days after Lollapalooza going, because 1, I love Providence, and 2, it’s a hell of a lot easier to make friends at shows in Providence than it is the Boston area. Foo Fest is an annual block party, with a lot of very unique bands on Empire Street in downtown Providence. It’s crazy cheap to get in (only $7), the beers are also cheap, and there are hipsters…a lot of hipsters because hey, it’s Providence.

After getting a much needed coffee at one of my favorite Providence coffee shops, the Coffee Exchange, I got down to the Foo Fest a bit later than planned. Once through the gate, I got a Zeppelin Heif beer, but can’t remember what the brand was, but it was pretty good. I had just missed Medusah Black on the outside stage, so I went inside to check out the Maker Faire, where there were a lot of people showing off 3D printers as well as a lot of homemade gadgets and robots. It was some pretty interesting stuff if you like geeking out to that kind of thing.

RI Makers Faire at AS220 Foo Fest

Rhode Island Maker Faire

I made my way back outside in time to see Providence’s own Littlefoot, who played a mix of 60’s surf rock with a bit of dreampop. They totally blew me away and were my favorite band of the day. This was also probably the most mellow band I saw.

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Littlefoot

On the inside stage, the most insane set of the night goes to garage rock band, Atlantic Thrills. The crowd went nuts moshing to every song the band played. At one point, lead singer Eric Aguiar asked for the head of the paper mache donkey that was on the side of the stage, which ended up in the pit and was completely torn apart by the crowd and subsequently left pieces of newspaper everywhere. It was great!! This band was much louder live than their recorded stuff would have you believe, and that’s always good thing!

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Atlantic Thrills

After Atlantic Thrills’ set ended, I went back outside to get another beer and to see VulGarrity. This brother and sister duo’s music was a nice change from the insanity that I had just witnessed on the inside stage. A little bit glam and a lot of rock, the two members kept trading off on guitar and drums (and synth). It was pretty interesting to watch them create live loops as they played as well. I was really liking this band a lot.

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Downtown Boys

I went back inside to see Downtown Boys, who put on a show almost as crazy as Atlantic Thrills. It’s not that often you see a thrash/punk band that is fronted by a female and featuring not one, but two saxophone players. Their songs were short at about a minute and a half each, but I’d definitely recommend experiencing their live shows. I even helped people up that fell while in the pit.

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Lolita Black

Back outside, Lolita Black was already playing and I caught the majority of their set. With a dark and heavy sound, the band had a pretty good sized audience who were really into it. Singer Scarlett Delgado made her way into the crowd to sing for a bit, which was pretty cool. This was one of those Providence bands I never got around to seeing, but was glad I finally did.

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Ssion

Next was the night’s big headliner Ssion (pronounced “shun”), who I never heard of until the Foo Fest lineup was announced. I caught a good portion of his set, but left a bit early since I was starting to get tired and still had an hour drive back home. The first song had a sample of “Rock On” by David Essex and sounded pretty cool with visual on a large screen behind him. For the time that I was there, Ssion’s set consisted of pretty mellow dance music that people really seemed into.

Although it would have been more fun to have people to hang out with during the shows, especially since last year’s Foo Fest was epic in soo many ways. I was bummed about not hitting up Olneyville N.Y. Systems for some delicious 3am junk food, but Haven Bros had to suffice for my ride back home. All in all, I still had a great time by myself and look forward to next year’s fest!

Littlefoot

Atlantic Thrills

VulGarrity

Downtown Boys

Lolita Black