May 25, 2004

Concert Review: Andrew WK at The Chance Theater in Poughkeepsie, NY 5/24/2004

The night had it's ups and downs with a total of 5 acts playing. Doors opened at 7:00PM and the first act hit the stage at 7:20PM. The first thing that struck me when I arrived was how small the crowd was, I had expected a larger turnout. The crows would grow a bit as the night went on, but not was expected, a member of the security staff also commented to me on how small the crowd was. Well, the crowd may have been small, but they were pumped for the show.

Opening Act #1: Ash Return
This band's set was just starting as I got in the door. It was a 5 piece featuring a female lead singer. I thought they were pretty good, they played contemporary sounding rock and roll. They looked young, I would guess high schoolers, and their stage presence could use some work. They put on a good show for starting a concert and the crowd was receptive to it.

Opening Act #2: Fireball Ministry
These guys were old school rock through and through. They weren't kids, and new how to play loud driving straight forward rock and roll. There was none of that nu-metal to be found. I really liked these guys half hour set. It was loud, it was musically tight, and they new how to work the crowd. I have no idea if these guys are on a label or not, but they should be. They appeared to be a band that has been around awhile, and you could tell by how well they worked as a band onstage. The lead singer/guitar player's mother was even in attendance.

Opening Act #3: No Motiv
Generic. Not much I can say beyond that, turn on your local pop-rock radio station and you've heard these guys. It was OK enough way to kill a half hour, but I wouldn't go out of my way to see them again. It even got to the point where towards the end of their set someone shouted "You Suck!" at them. The singer/guitar player stopped at this point and brought the unlucky young kid up on stage, put a a guitar on him and told him to play something better. The kid just stood there feebly plucking a couple of strings until he was sent back into the pit. A humorous moment, but not one that would endear them to me, they should have taken it in stride. Anyway, the next step the show took was even lower.

Opening Act #4: The Locust
Before I say anything else, I must say that this was the worst "band" I have ever seen, or heard, in my life. During their lengthy setup, the PA system was playing these weird synth-bug sounds, that was weird, but fitting for the goings on on-stage. There were four guys dressed all in white with a big black spot on their backs and masks that were a sort of bug/alien hybrid. OK so far, I don't mind hearing something weird, and the outfits combined with the presence of a synth/keyboard onstage seemed to promise something bizarre. Boy, was I wrong. Their so-called "music" was nothing but pure noise. It seemed like random and rapid strumming, and some combination of 3 of the members screaming. Each song was about 1.5 minutes and they played for nearly half an hour. It was pure torture. If I wasn't interested in seeing Andrew WK, I would have left, and I have listened to some bad bands. Anyone with half a brain and the slightest interest in music would have been offended by this excrement. Avoid this band at all costs!

Main Event: Andrew WK
The act we've all been waiting for, the band we plunked down our hard earned money for, would they live up to the expectations? For those of you who haven't heard of him. He is a singer/guitarist/pianist who plays hard rock in a similar vein to AC/DC with the party atmosphere of, say, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. Had a hit on MTV a few years back with Party Hard. The music isn't terribly deep, but it is a lot of fun. The atmosphere in the club was electric, as soon as Andrew hit the stage with his band the crowd went insane. There were bodies flying everywhere! Apparently, their stage-diving policy was to allow anyone up on stage. During many songs, the band was almost completely enveloped in people, and the stage would have to be cleared to allow the next song to begin. Andrew is quite the strange one, he has a unique, ummm, "dancing" style and massive amounts of charisma, always with a goofy grin plastered on his face. They played their most well-known songs like She is Beautiful, Party Hard, and New York City (which he offered to red as Poughkeepsie City). It was one of the best performances I've seen in a while. The happy party mood permeated the whole crowd and was great to watch. All I can really say, is that if you like rock, and get the chance to see these guys, do it.

The show was very good, a lot of bang for the buck. The only bad part being the dreadful Locust. Andrew WK is someone I would welcome the opportunity to see live again.


Post a Comment