Dinosaur in Trouble: proudly serving Twin Cities music geeks

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Noise! Noise! Noise!

The one and only Michael Yonkers

My initial reaction to seeing five guys twiddling knobs on the floor of the Entry with their backs to the audience was, “Oh great, another pretentious ambient/noise band. This is going to be boooring. Oh well, I’ve been through this before; I’m sure I can find some way to entertain myself.” And entertain myself I did. I discovered that if I sat with my back up against the wall separating the floor from the bar area, I could really feel the vibrations coming from the distorted bass. Feeling the music, as well as hearing it, kept me much more attentive; thus, I was much more immersed in the sonic landscape created by local noisemakers, Diamonds. About five minutes into their set, however, I found that my extra effort was no longer needed to enjoy Diamonds. Their drummer finally woke from his slumber. Now, a noise band with a live drummer is already several steps above your average noise band. Diamonds definitely were several steps above: not only did they have a drummer, they had a really, really talented and effective drummer. His subdued drum roll slowly but surely developed into a full-on percussive assault during the course of their single-song set. Diamonds’ music continued to build in a Godspeed You! Black Emperor-like crescendo until we were all convinced that they were just as exciting as any of the other bands sharing the bill last Tuesday night. What a surprise!


Chicago’s Plastic Crimewave Sound, led by Galactic Zoo Dossier editor/creator, Steve Krakow (a.k.a. Plastic Crimewave), played after Diamonds. Their feedback-ridden, spaced-out psych rock was one-upped with a surprise guest appearance by the king of all local cult heroes: Michael Yonkers! The addition of Yonkers made for an even noisier Plastic Crimewave Sound. Before they played their final number, Plastic Crimewave warned the crowd that the following song was not for the faint-of-heart. He was absolutely right. Crimewave’s droning feedback, Yonkers’ ultra-fuzzed-out guitar, and the sheer chaos contributed by the rest of the band made for a beautiful mess that only Diamonds could have prepared us for. After their set, Crimewave announced that we have a god living among us in Minnesota, and we should bow down whenever we see Michael Yonkers on the street. Fortunately, I’ve been doing that for years. For all you crazy collectors out there, Plastic Crimewave Sound also has a split 7” with Michael Yonkers – definitely worth getting. They are also splitting a 12” with headliners Oneida, which will be the first release on Oneida’s new label, Brah Records.

Plastic Crimewave Sound

PCS featuring Michael Yonkers

Kinski was next. Are there any kids around? No? OK…Holy fucking shit!!! Do you love instrumental rock, but don’t have the patience for Tortoise or Tristeza? Do you want to bang your head to a rock-and-roll flute, but hate Jethro Tull? Then Kinski is the perfect band for you. In order to capture the pure intensity of their shows, Kinski recorded their new album, Alpine Static, as a full live band. Although Alpine Static is a great album, it still isn’t an accurate representation of Kinski’s inflammable shows. The vibrations from the extreme volume, the energy and adrenaline of the band, and the reaction of the audience are impossible to transfer onto a recording, no matter what method is used in the studio. Needless to say, it’s also impossible to accurately describe the reality of Kinski on a two-dimensional blog. I can tell you this, though: in an attempt to prove that they're from this planet and are humble human beings, they closed with a cover of Crazy Elephant’s 1969 bubblegum hit, “Gimme Gimme Good Lovin’.” Isn’t it weird to think that that song was originally released around the same time that the Michael Yonkers Band recorded Microminiature Love? I guess it’s comparable to the Kinski/Jessica Simpson discrepancy found on our radios today.



Not many bands would be able to follow that fiery performance by Kinski. Luckily, Oneida is not your average band. Their status as one of indie rock’s hardest-working touring acts definitely showed when they hit the stage. They weren’t there to fuck around. OK, maybe they were there to fuck around, but they were also there to deliver an astonishing, mind-blowing set of vigorous songs. Oneida didn’t seem to be too concerned with keeping their set consistent with their new album. The Wedding is full of pretty string arrangements and pleasant pop songs. But last Tuesday, Oneida was more intent on blowing out our ears and making sure that we all went home drenched in sweat. Maybe it’s just the atmosphere of the Entry that makes bands feel the need to follow in the footsteps of Hüsker Dü. Or maybe Oneida is just plain awesome.


Oneida likes Joy Division

Check out Chris’s blog for a second opinion of last Tuesday’s show at the Entry.


Blogger Chris said...

Thanks for the mention, Lee. Great review of this show, and fun, action-picked pics to boot! What more could ya ask for?

10:29 PM

Blogger Chris said...

I mean, packed, action-packed pics...you don't pick action, or else it wouldn't be called action...I think?

10:30 PM


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