Concert season has begun! Translation: Get used to paying twice what you would to see the same act anywhere else, and without the added bonus of an opener. If you were wondering why Russian gigs are so expensive, I have an answer: It's because certain major promoters are in the habit of bidding double the asking price to bring bands to Moscow. Why? Fuck if I know. But the result is that smaller clubs are getting shut out and prices for mediocre talent is rising. Spend the oil money while it's here, I guess.
First up this fortnight is the godfather of punk, IGGY & THE STOOGES (September 11, B1 Maximum, 20:00). The Stooges started in the 60s going against the hippie grain by playing loud and abrasive rock and roll. As front man, Iggy Pop was infamous for going batshit insane on stage, cutting himself with bottles, covering himself with peanut butter, etc. Obviously, something this awesome couldn't last, and the band broke up in the early 70s, with Iggy going on to a distinguished solo career. A few years back, the band reunited, with MINUTEMEN bassist MIKE WATT filling in. Sadly, they recorded a universally derided comeback album, but hopefully they'll just stick to the hits at a sure-to-be-crowded B1.
On the more confusing side of things is Rotterdam's MALORIX (September 12, Project OGI, 23:00), a creator of sound clashes. Malorix combines everything from gabber to grime to banghra to commercial rap, chops them up and spits them out again in something at once exciting and revolting. At the very least, it should be a good warm-up for the KID606 show later this month.
The third annual four-day Dutch Punch Art Festival kicks off Sept. 12 with a dozen acts from that country where Amsterdam is, including trash garage punkers Low Point Drains, above. See dutchpunch.kultprom.org for a complete list of below sea-level Dutch-a-liscious events.
Also hailing from the Netherlands, THE LOW POINT DRAINS (September 14, Zhest, 20:00) have spent the better part of the last decade playing down and dirty rock 'n roll, not unlike THE GORIES. The gig is opened by local trash rockers RIVUSHIE STRUNY, who are quickly becoming one of my favorite local bands.
I had no idea that shitty New York hardcore had such an audience here, but I guess anything that can get meatheads slamming works. In any case, PRO-PAIN (September 14, Tochka, 20:00) become the umpteenth chugga-chugga hardcore band to hit town in the last few months.
It hasn't even been a year since their last visit, but PSYCHIC TV (September 15, Ikra, 21:00) have managed to record another album, which they're here to push. If you're uninitiated into the cult, Psychic TV is more of an industrial art project than a band in the traditional sense, with lots of video installations and other weird shit. The band revolves around glam trannie/theorist GENESIS P-ORRIDGE and whoever he wants to play with him. The end result is experimental music that mixes psychedelic rock, punk, and electronica.
An old friend of mine has lately been trying to get me to go to synthpop, darkwave, pseudo-goth shows. But I just can't bring myself to go, and fortunately every time he invites me, I've got something else to do. It looks like he'll be texting me again, as German synth-poppers MELOTRON (September 16, Tochka, 18:00) hit town. The nerds in attendance will also get to enjoy DIORAMA, HEAD-LESS and Russian goths ROPPONGI INC. PROJECT. Dark!
Fortunately, my get out of goth-jail free card comes in the form of AUX RAUS (September 16, 16 Tons, 22:00), an Amsterdam techno-punk band. Their goal is simple: to mix the urgency and energy of punk rock with contemporary techno and gabber. They claim to make parties out of funerals, but given the copious amounts of alcohol consumed at such events, that shouldn't be too difficult. Then again, they've been invited to open for THE LOCUST on their upcoming European tour, so they must be doing something right.