Friday, April 2, 2010

Live: Pregnant, Men, Passive Aggressor

So ages ago, I went to Bruar Falls to see a band called Pregnant play and then I got really behind on my live reviews, so....

Passive Aggressor was playing when I showed up. I didn't see enough of their set to give a proper review, but they were a good poppy hardcore band with a female vocalist who went out into the audience and yelled like a serious mu'fucker. The band was tight and packed a punk and the show was spirited. [myspace]

They were actually the second band of the night. I missed the first act, called Zulus, but Shag of Shellshag was there and said they were really good. And if a recommendation from Shellshag isn't worth pursuing, I don't know what is. [myspace]

Next up, The Men had some good things going for them, but they don't seem to have worked out their sound yet. They're about 75% hardcore punk and 25% shoegaze, with massively loud guitar drones straight off Loveless. It's a great combination, but the effort seemed confused, particularly by the sequence of the set list, which started with pure shoegaze and then abruptly shifted to more straight-forward punk. The band also traded around instruments, which I always like - keeps things from getting too settled. But it's a delicate balance - variety and consistency, that is - the band has yet to really to strike the middle. Still, they combine some many of favorite things that I can't help but be excited - I'm going to keep an eye on these guys!

Pregnant were the highlight of the night for me. Cory from Stupid Party sent me an e-mail when he was drunk and told me they were his favorite band, and that's the best recommendation I can think of. At first, the awkward trio didn't strike me as special - good hardcore, but nothing to write home about.

But then, as their set went on, I began to notice the combination of complexity and tightness in their songs, the sweet riffs, the air-raid rumble of the bass, the chunky vocals and the wild way the band grappled and wrangled their instruments on stage. The best punk bands seem always to be fighting against their instruments rather than working with this. And here's an example in its finest form. Look out for Pregnant, there's something special about these kids. [myspace]

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