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I Love You But I’ve Chosen Darkness/Experimental Aircraft
Emo’s, Wed. 12/10

The black coats and scarves warmed up to the front stage of Emo’s Wednesday evening the way college kiddos embrace I-Pods and indie rock. Two of Red River’s finest no-wave outfits were on hand to offer their own harrowing brand of layered noise and sultry sound, borrowing heavily from the Brit-pop influenced, shoe-gazing aesthetics of the NYC art-rock scene circa 1984.

‘Slow and steady wins the race’ proved to be the prize-winning formula employed by the aimless, angstless grooves that make up the hazy sounds of Experimental Aircraft. The four-piece constructed thick, trancy palettes of organic guitar fuzz behind a sparse yet timely slue of kicks and thuds. The co-ed vocal tandem combined the lush and dreamy vocals of the red-dressed Rachel with the mellow, non-confrontational rasps of TJ, who also shreds a moody, distortion-friendly axe. The noise blaring from the amps for me drew comparisons to My Bloody Valentine—a crisp fusion of unhurried ambience and drone, crawling through an unlit forest of sonic gloom and despair.

There was more doom pop to come, as I Love You but I’ve Chosen Darkness took the stage in support of their new, Brit Daniel produced EP. The band played a short set that proposed more of an up-beat, dancy vibe behind the choppy, drum machine-esque skin-slappings of Tim White. He was my favorite part of the band; often keeping the pulsating heartbeats sharp and steady as the rest of the band froze still between various head-bobbing time sequences. The hollow nihilism of this atmospheric sound provided a crisp fusion of whispery vocals and a distressed, rolling rhythm that roared like a match made in the depression-filled, new wave era of art-punk confusion. Bravo kiddos—this sound still rocks.

-Smitty

Riverboat Gamblers, New Disciples
EMO’S, Saturday December 13

The New Disciples: you gotta love these die-hards just for having the balls to get up and do this glam-rock retro poser clown act in these times of doom and despair. They put themselves out. They got the attitude, they got the moves. I got one question: how can those pants not fall apart? I swear, dude was wearing the same beat up peg-leg pants a couple nights before at Room 710 when I first noticed that they’re probably 30 years old and he’s probably been rocking out and passing out in them every day, the whole time. There they are again, the pants! Gotta love it.

With a name that implies a country-blues type deal, the Riverboat Gamblers threw me for a loop with their spazz-out cock-rock attack. On the mike they got this hellish-cute motherfuggin jumping-bean, humping the poles and laid-out wrapping his feet around them like a stripper all fritzed up on catnip. These hottie boys rocked their gonads to blisters. Pure rock and roll. No memorable songs in particular – it was one tempo, one drumbeat, 3 or 4 chords per tune, and one perpetual wham-bam punkety butt-slap rock show. They had their stage antics down tight, put a massive load of energy into their performance, and flowed from one slice to the next with no delay and no apology. Nothing stood out, but everyone stood up in the cold, packed house and got their butts rocked to bits.

- Beky Hayes

Agnostic Front
Emo’s. Fri. Dec. 5

Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! New York Hard Core Rules! Oi! Oi! Oi! These boots are for the righteous and the bald! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Working class. Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Support your local scene! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! New York Hard Core Rules! Oi! Oi! Oi! Victim of pain. Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Liberty and justice for all! Oi! Oi!Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! East coast west coast baby. Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! We’ve been crucified, villified, and purified with genocide. Oi! Oi! Oi! Cause for alarm. Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Pogo! Oi! Oi! Oi! Circle pit! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Punk Rock Punk Rock! Oi! Oi! Oi! Punk Rock Punk Rock Oi! Oi! Oi! Fuck the system! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! Oi! New York Hardcore Rules! Oi!

-Baldy McFatridge

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