The Cadaver Dogs, The Beladeans, and The Surf Messiahs: Friday, Nov 7 @ The Railway Club
I’m not sure why but it is really freakin’ hot in The Railway Club tonight. And I don’t mean “hawt” in the “woo hoo, everyone partay!” sense. I mean “hot” as in whomever you paid to fix the thermostat should be recalled, put on stage, and shot with a ball of his own shit in front of this sweaty crowd. The bottom line, I suppose, is that the heat is on full and it doesn’t really matter if it is deliberate or custodial error. Pretty, sleeveless young women walk past with a greasy tussle in their hair and a sheen on their sculpted arms. I guess sweat might not be such a bad thing on a night like tonight. Besides, sweat puts the party toxins back in the air where they belong.
It is in the midst of this heat wave that The Surf Messiahs take to the stage. I have known of The Surf Messiahs for some time but this is the first I have seen them play. I heard a few of their tracks while crashing on Mike L’s couch after a Pack A.D. gig. I liked it then and I am looking forward to it tonight.
On a lateral line, marked one to ten (one having no actual value other than representing Dick Dale’s music and ditto for ten except that it is Agent Orange), The Surf Messiahs hit around a three. A band like Mexican Drug Patrol (formerly The High School Girls) drop in around five or six, their sound being ever so slightly harder than The Surf Messiahs.
*Authors Note: It has been brought to my attention that the paragraph above may seem as though The Surf Messiahs “rate” a three. The One to Ten Scale was meant to illustrate the spectrum of the genre, not to be used as a value system. The Surf Messiahs kick ass and rate an 11 on any scale you choose to use. BSC
Truth be told, instrumental surf rock is not one of my favourite genres music to listen to. When listening to either Dick Dale or Agent Orange (the entire scope of my instrumental surf music experience), I usually tune out about three or four songs into the album and start daydreaming about Tarantino films; however, like a lot of things, seeing the music played live is a different experience. I find myself hanging on to every note coming from the stage.
At the midpoint in the set, they announce that they “are going to play a slow song” and then tune their guitars. I don’t know if this is a misplaced introduction or a very subtle, yet funny, joke. All in all, a very enjoyable set. Even if instrumental surf music isn’t your thing, I am betting that a set by The Surf Messiahs might just be, so be sure to check them out should the chance ever present itself.
Just when I thought it couldn’t get any hotter in The Railway Club, The Beladeans hit the stage running. Mike Hawk’s heavy guitar comes ripping off the stage like the sheet lightning that illuminates The Rockies in summer. Followed closely by “Dusty” Doug Smith’s rolling thunder bass that comes chasing through the foothills. It is strangely fitting that the drummer’s name is Rob Lord, because he is the One keeping this natural “KABOOM Fest” on target with both lightning and thunder from his feet and hands (Geez, Baron… hyperbole much?).
It is kind of a running joke with anyone who reads this blog or watches my videos with any regularity that at least once every two weeks I fall head over heels in love with a new band. Well kids, this week that band is The Beladeans. I couldn’t get enough of their set. Not necessarily music to make love to but it pounds right into you and makes you think dirty thoughts. Combined with the temperature in The Railway Club tonight, a Beladeans’ set make male and female both want to head out on the prowl to really fuck the hell out of somebody. When The Beladeans share The Biltmore stage with The Pack A.D. ten days from now, it’d be a good idea for all prudes to lock up their sons and daughters and board up the windows. Statues will be fucking in the streets when that shockwave hits. The Beladeans remind me of the way Big Sugar used to sound, but there is something a bit stickier, more primal, to their live sound.
I know a girl who “did” Big Sugar. I’d like to think that just as the band was bringing her to orgasm she screamed “Beladeans!” Heh… It’s still better than “Rosebud.”
With the heat still rising, The Cadaver Dogs start their set. Having The Cadaver Dogs crank up a set in a sweltering room is akin to lobbing a hand grenade into an inferno for shits and giggles. The Cadaver Dogs, as per always, rock it real hard with their own brand of redneck rock ‘n’ roll.
Jay “Gunther” Douglas beats furious time on the drums as my friend (and my former drummer) leans over and says, “That drummer is fucking excellent!” Mike L. has regained his strength from The Surf Messiahs’ killed-or-be-killed set and Doug’s had five minutes to down a beer and straighten his tie between The Beladeans and Cadaver Dogs’ sets. And Mike O.? Well, he’s Mike O., isn’t he? The man cracks more smiles than a Cheshire Cat while he’s playing and whips his SG around like Hemingway with a marlin on the line. I think my favourite part of whatching Mike O. front The Cadaver Dogs is the glint he gets in his eye when he is really on, sort of a “fuck yeah!” in a twinkle.
Towards the end of the set, a tiny blonde, introduced as Doug’s grad date from 1983, takes the stage and the mic for a ripping rendition of AC/DC’s “Sin City.” After Nettie descends from the stage, The Cadaver Dogs finish off the evening with “Beer Flavoured Beer.”
Tonight is rumoured to be The Cadaver Dogs’ last live set for a while. I hope that it is a short while because the scene needs bands like The Cadaver Dogs: they are good, friendly, and the best damn closers in the city. Plus, you can’t keep a good band down. One day soon, they will find themselves together again and sharing in Mike O.’s impish smile as a group, just like a group of juvenile delinquents who, years later in middle age, find a paper bag full of dog shit and know exactly what to do with it.