The bizarre spectacle known as Lightning Bolt rolled through town Sept. 23. A crowd of 500 people at the First Unitarian Church were treated to something that could only be described as captivatingly unusual.
Lightning Bolt is a crushingly powerful duo consisting of a mysterious drummer and a ski masked bass guitarist. They rage against all the conventions usually found at a rock concert.
At this particular show, in lieu of the stage, they set up in a corner of the venue, between the merchandise tables and the bathrooms.
When the opening acts finished, Lightning Bolt began right away, leaving the crowd no break in between acts. They perform with only a psychedelic drum kit, a wall of amps and ancient PA equipment.
Lightning Bolt’s music is almost entirely instrumental, and features such weirdly distorted bass and rapid fire drumming, it feels like the music you’d hear at a club in some sort of robot hell.
Appropriately enough for this bizarre show, a variety of unconventional bands opened the show. The first act, Necronomitron, was a three-piece metal group who played purposely out of tune drums and instruments.
Hanged Up are a violin and drum duo that play haunting songs, though they did little to ease the crowd’s anticipation.
Battles was a fascinating mix of indie, funk and jazz, featuring members of Tomahawk, Don Caballero, Helmet and Toni Braxton’s brother on guitar.
Like the rest of the bill, An Albatross is one of those bands that needs to be seen to be believed. They come very close to defying description, but “homo-erotic keyboard tinged grindcore” should point listeners in the right direction
Incredible sounds, deafening volume and an eclectic mix of images made the night quite unworldly.
Some concerts are good, some are great, but it is a rare occasion when one is truly unique.
Chuck DelRossJosephine Munis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org