I wanted to hear Casanovas in Heat again. They made a big impression
on their Middle East show in November. They were at OBriens on Friday
Shepherdess has been around for a while. Its
headed by Hilken Mancini. Hilken, who also does the Rock and
Roll Aerobics, is part of the Monsieurs. It doesnt take
much to see what she brings to the Monsieurs; their sound, and
Shepherdess, are all about her guitar sound. Thick with an enveloping
buzz, it seems to make more sound than one guitar should. It has the
characteristics of a lot of early punk efforts and we love that. The
Shepherdess trio had the punk spirit in all they do.
Hilken is a captivating leader on stage. All the songs came across as packs
of energy. They have no bass-just drums and another guitar. The three have primitive
stomping fun. The final song which was more traditional sounding hit hard. They
are one hard working trio.
Casanovas In Heat
Casanovas in Heat took no time to blast
out of the gate and command the stage. They were just as impressive
as last time. The orientation of the stage at OBriens
sometimes hurts the mix and it did on this night by burying the bass
and drums to some extent. That left the two guitar Husker Du-like barrage
to hit with full impact. The guitarists know how to play complimentary
voicings to get a wall of sound with a ringing on top. Its an
intoxicating mix. They have two voices going also and that adds impact
to the sound, as if they need it. I know from last time that the bassist
is an exceptional player and even though I could see him doing nice
fretwork I couldnt hear most of it.
In the middle of this thrill ride of a set they decided to do a cover
Best Friend by the Outlets. That totally floored me. They were
able to capture that high strung frenzy that is the Outlets trademark. Six feet
from the band playing flat out with ringing guitars (like my ears would later)
on a classic Boston rocker I was in heaven. Here is a video of Best Friend
but it doesnt have that live impact but you get the idea.
Casanovas In Heat
That salute from Boston punk history was welcome
and made me wonder what their other influences are. I hear Husker Du
and the band members t-shirts were of Thin Lizzy, Devo and Cheap
Trick. Like a lot of other bands I think they should have a higher profile.
You should catch them for a heady blast of rock. They'll be playing
the anti-Valentine show called Frozen Heart Club February 15
The general talk lately turns to the array of interesting
shows that seem to have no end. A year after TTs and Church closings,
and Johnny Ds soon too, sees no letup in the overall scene. Saturday
there was Lyres/Paul Collins at Middle East and the Dictators
at Great Scott (and Wilco at the Orpheum). The early start of
the Lyres show prompted many to club jump between that and the
Dictators. Both of the shows sold out.
Paul Collins has a catalog of pop from the
Nerves and The Beat to The Paul Collins Band that
thrills all pop fans. Hes also known for translating it to the
stage. We saw him in this same club in 2011(LINK).
Collins was in a sunny mood judging
by his stage patter. To begin he turned things around and took a cell
phone photo of the audience. Paul looks plain and unassuming, nothing
special but then the music starts. It is one pop gem after the other
with no duds. They are combination of new and old and older songs although
you could never tell which if you didnt know. Each song slots
into a grove, then the chords give a forward motion and the melody captures
you, and finally if you havent been won over the chorus will hook
you. This crowd was a knowledgeable group that didnt need to be
won over they were soaking up every note.
Pauls voice got froggy at spots but that didnt hurt things. The
backup group was strong and was a big plus on the support vocals.
A song called I
Still Love You was one of the ones that grabbed me big time.
I wanted that to go on forever. I wanted the show to go on forever too.
I had a dozen songs in my head I wanted him to do. He never even did
Hanging on the Telephone from the Nerves and in truth
he didnt need to. There was nothing to prove after that set.
The audience had loads of familiar faces. This gig
brought out the faithful. There were warm feelings all around and that
carried over to the Lyres. The crowd was there for both Collins
and the Lyres and they gave rapt attention to both.
Lyres were in top form and that means its
as good as it gets. It was the same line up we have seen for years now;
Aquino on guitar, Paul Murphy on drums and Dave Szczepaniak
on bass. They have it all down.
They start with a few familiar faves that are everything you love about these
guys. The songs we love and the performance that contains so much more in it
than other groups even have a clue about. Others that cover this material do
it by rote, or see the songs as campy, but to Jeff this is serious work and
the songs are important. This was born out with the next section of songs that
were nuggets that Jeff has mined. He talked a little about the overall idea
of the songs. They were about love and heartbreak. The lyrics mention crying
and lying a lot. Jeff and the band bring out those emotions that are inherent
in the songs and they're able to make them live again. The number one focus
is Jeffs voice. To cover these songs by different artists he puts his
voice through the test. He sings in different registers and intonations, he'll
hit a falsetto or scream, whatever it takes to put the song across. Im
reminded of their other song We Sell Soul, thats what they are
They could easily play a set of songs we all know
and love. The Lyres have albums full of them but they
show themselves to be still digging and working new material and giving
us the thrill of seeing these songs come to life. This is a group still
being vital. 1979 or 2016 the Lyres are still doing what they
And thats not all, after the middle section they went back to the hits and that was heaven.
You couldnt ask for more; the Lyres
at their best and Paul Collins ditto.
At the end of the Lyres a sizable amount of the people went to Great Scott’s and the Dictators.
There was some grousing online about how bad the crowded club was but all agreed that the Dictators were in
primo form. John Keegan who was at the Middle East also says:
The Dictators cranked cranked cranked. The perfect end to a night that just kept getting better.
He scored some pic too.
Dictators photos by John Keegan CLICK
Jan 29 John Keegan caught the Ambient Orchestra doing Bowie's
LOW and Heroes symphonically CLICK
In other news .......
WBCN was shuffled to digital radio after its demise on
the airwaves. It appears that It has been shut off from that too. Thats
like getting shot then hanged. Its truly over. Carmelita
posted on Facebook
"Apparently, the corporate suited
zombie drones at CBS weren't satisfied enough to destroy the legendary
WBCN Radio, they just had to pull the plug on WBCN Free Form too. My
heart and thoughts are with the legendary BCN pioneer, Samuel Kopper,
and Destiny Curtis, beloved lil' radio sister who followed in
the footsteps of her BCN predecessors by getting what great radio
is, and supporting local rock in the dignified manner it deserves. Bah,
I have no real competition now, wink emoticon, but, seriously, today
is a very sad day and I wish them the best."
Arthur Freedman whose video work of Boston bands through the
years is now in the Harvard
Film Archives is currently displaying some of his new photography
at the Out of the Blue
Too Gallery and Performance space. These are mostly nature photos
rather than band photos. He will be adding to the ones that are on display
now as time goes on. They are for sale also.
Arthur Freedman and his work at the Out of the Blue Too Gallery
Andy California has three songs recorded and up online. Check
them out here. They're released by Slovenly records. Nothing
beats the live experience but these capture the blues via punk that
Here's some good shows coming up this week.....
February 4 (Thursday) Highway Chapel
is at Hennessey's Hooley House 25 Union St (by Haymarket) Boston.
February 5 (Friday) The Shiny Beasts
and The Knock Ups are at Jeanie Johnston Pub in JP. each band is doing
two sets, alternating sets.
February 5 (Friday) Randy Black and
the Heathcroppers are at Tavern at the End of the World.
February 5 (Friday) The Silks, The Dirty
Truckers and The Furs are at The Midway
February 6 (Saturday) Roy Sludge
with Duke Levine & Johnny Sciascia at Atwoods this is a 4PM
February 6 (Saturday) Magic Shoppe
(celebrating their EP Release) Zip-Tie Handcuffs, Bong Wish and
S.S. Cretins at Great Scott
February 6 (Saturday) The Upper
Crust, E (Thalia Zedek's new band) The Nickel & Dime Band
(Rick Berlin's newest project) and Lived on Lead are at Once.
February 6 (Saturday) Koto in Salem goes
MOD with The Forz, Tiger Bomb and The Evil Streaks
February 7 (Sunday) The Manglers, The
Grommets, Jason Bennett & The Resistance are at The Midway for a 4PM
And out in the future we have.....
February 8 (Monday) Punk Rockin' And
Pastie Poppin' Burlesque at The Midway!!
February 12 (Friday) Chetstock
#1 2016 will be at Once Lounge @ Cuisine En Locale! They will also
be filming a documentary with lots of interviews and great Chet's stories.
This is a memorial event to support Pine Street Inn in honor of Chet.
And check out the killer line-up of bands: Moose and the Mudbugs,
Liz Borden Group, Pajama Slave Dancers, Dogmatics, Bim Skala Bim, Dogzilla
Reunion (with special appearance by AEF) and Chet's All Stars
- more info soon check the FB
page for updates. And you can get
your tix here.
February 12 (Friday) Petty Morals, B.L.O.W.W.,
Johnny Blazes And The Pretty Boys and Drawstring Lamps are at Great
February 13 (Saturday) The Quiggs will
be on Brian Young's A Crash Course for the Ravers on WMFO 95.1, 1-4PM.
February 13 (Saturday) Eat
Your Heart Out diner at Cuisine en Locale-Five courses featuring
hearts of all descriptions. There are 2 seatings 5:30pm and 8pm, the dinner
includes ticket to Frozen
Hearts Club show which is to follow at Once Lounge an Aniti Valentine's
Day show with Sneeze the Daizys, Casanoves in Heat and Ian Cat &
February 13 (Saturday) Vapors of Morphine
and Mr Airplane Man
February 13 (Saturday) Lux Lives!
A celebration of all things Lux and The Cramps is
back this year at Dusk in Provi, RI featuring The Buzzards (members
of thee Itchies and The Worried), Rumble Party and Thee Icepicks
also music by DJs Ty Jesso and Kogar the Swinging Ape -(FB
February 17 (Wednesday) Poison
Idea, Child Bite, The FUs, LIVVER and Profit Margin at Once
February 17 (Wednesday) Duck
and Cover are on the bill at the Middle East with (ex Hanoi Rocks')
Michael Monroe and Hardcore Superstar (Tix almost sold
out folks act
February 18 (Thursday) Keytar Bear
is at The Midway...a bear's gotta play but it's cold outside!! He's on before
February 19 (Friday) Taxicab Cowboy
, The Galvanics, The Brigands and Phil Yates & The Affiliates
at PA's Lounge
February 19 (Friday) The Humanoids,
Arctic Horror, In The Shit and Oxblood Forge are at The Midway
February 19 (Friday) The Monsieurs,
The Barbazons, Nice Guys and Pouty are at The Middle East Up.
February 19 (Friday) wow this should
be interesting Russian Punk bands Naive and Matrixx are
at the Middle East down. More info on the FB
February 20 (Saturday) Brian Young's
A Crash Course for the Ravers has The Hummingbird Syndicate as special
guests. 1-4PM 95.1 WMFO
February 20 (Saturday) Diablogata
and Gold Blood & Associates along with DJ Valdez the Sinner
will be shaking it up at Store 54.
February 20 (Saturday) Classic Ruins,
Fireking and Plume are at The Tavern at the End of the World
February 20 (Saturday) Quiggs,
Howie & The Scrapes, Electric Octopus, and The Black Cheers
are at The Foundation Room at the House of Blues (FB
page for this excellent gig!)
February 20 (Saturday) The Handymen
are at The Plough and Stars (10PM show)
February 20 (Saturday) M.O.T.O. , Stop
Calling Me Frank, Sprained Ankles and The Johns are at The Midway
February 26 (Friday) Township is
having their Vinyl Release Party, also on the bill Sidewalk Driver and
When Particles Collide - at Great Scott
February 26 (Friday) Jittery Jack &
Miss Amy along with Cactus Attack and The Alrighters are at
February 27 (Saturday) Charlie Dont
Surf are at PA's Lounge.
February 27 (Saturday) Cujo, Watts ,
Jenny Dee & The Deelinquents and Christian McNeill are at Thunder
March 4 (Friday) The Upper Crust, Muck
& The Mires and Tsunami of Sound are at The Midway
March 5 (Saturday) Jeremy & The
Harlequins and The Connection are at The Plough & Stars (Great
March 16 (Wednesday) Battalion of Saints,
Phobia, Nomads and I am Become Death are at Great Scott.
March 19 (Saturday) The Devil's Twin
and Diablogato are at O'Brien's
March 19 (Saturday) Lux Lives! A
celebration of all things Lux and The Cramps is back this year at The Bayside
Bowl in Portland, ME featuring
The Gamma Goochies, Thee Ice Picks and Video Nasties - also music
by DJs Ty Jesso and Kogar the Swinging Ape -(FB
March 25 (Friday) OK whoa....this
is gonna be a wild night...go if you dare...S&M punk band GASH
is at PA's Lounge...also on the bill is DISIPLINE:
Boston queer BDSM Punk.
March 28 (Monday) The Goddamn Gallows,
King Sickabilly Trio, and Outlaw Ritual are at The Middle East Up.
April 1 (Friday) "Drop
Ya Mic and pick up yer paint brush" is a show of Musicians'
art work at Once Lounge...check out the FB
page..the list is looooonnnnggg. Providing music for the event
will be The Old Edison, Tom Baker and the Snakes, Stars Like Ours and
Ringtail. $9 cover with free apps, art at 6PM music about 8:30.
April 1 (Friday) Kenne Highland 60th
birthday party at The Cantab Club Bohemia
April 2 (Friday) Kenne Highland 60th
birthday party at the midway (this is his actual birthday!) An afternoon
4PM show -more info to come
April 2 (Friday) the night show at The
Midway is Wussy and The Thalia Zedek band.
April 3- 22 (Friday) Rock
n Roll Rumble at Once Lounge
April 5 (Tuesday) The Legendary Shack
Shakers, The Pine Hill Haints and Diablogato are at Great Scott
May 21 (Saturday) A Celebration of Life
of Keith Brooks (friend to many and hardcore music lover) will be at The Midway - on
the bill: The Struggle, Honest John, Words Of Truth, CHEECH, Straphangers,
and DOT RATS -This show runs from 4PM to Midnight.
CONTACT US AT....firstname.lastname@example.org
- Send us your gig listings, your news and anything else ya got!!
Casanovas In Heat
Hilken of Shepherdess