Friday, September 21, 2012
Icon of Coil and [:SITD:] @ the Shredder (9/16/12)
In spite of my 90-95% black attire and my undying love for writers like Baudelaire and bands like Joy Division, I've never considered myself a full-fledged Goth. For one thing, I tan way too easily. For another, I don't know the first damn thing about make-up or eye shadow. Nevertheless, I have great affection for the folks who comprise the Goth community around Boise; many of them are good people, and hanging out with them has helped me figure out a lot about myself. This show caught my attention, consequently, because it had been set up by Ginger Christiansen of Wicked Wonderland, who served as the guiding light and driving force of the scene for quite a while until she moved to Seattle.
I counted about thirty people when I made it down to the Shredder. That number would grow to about forty by the time that the show began. All of the PVC, leather, fishnets, piercings and high-heeled boots around me brought back fond memories of hanging out at Nocturnum on Sunday nights at Terrapin Station. It felt good to see these folks congregated together again, though I did wonder where the hell they all were when Peter Murphy rolled through town.
First up this night was [:SITD:], an EBM/Industrial trio from Germany. Their martial beats, harsh riffs, screeching textures and guttural vocals hit so hard that you almost didn't notice how catchy they were. The mix of egalitarianism and authoritarianism in this music intrigued me: it sounded simple enough that anyone could get into it, but its unyielding quality ensured that only a select few would. That could have proved ominous, but vocalist Carsten Jacek's open, brawny, down-to-earth stage presence helped guard against any overtones of Deutschland uber alles. I took his Hank III t-shirt as a good sign too.
After [:SITD:] came the Norway duo Icon of Coil. Their take on Industrial proved less monolithic than their opener's but didn't suffer at all for that. Indeed, the layered, fluid intricacy of their beats and hooks just gave the crowd even more incentive to dance. His black hair slicked back, tattoos covering his arms, prowling back and forth with the mic in his hand, Andy LePlegua looked as if he could've been the frontman for some American hardcore band. At various points, however, he shifted his baritone growl into a smooth croon that recalled Peter Murphy in its brooding theatricality. Enthralling and exhilarating.
After Icon of Coil finished, Ginger Christiansen, the Red Queen herself, took the stage. Although she may have moved out of state, Christiansen pledged her continued love for and devotion to the children of the night here. She gave them a run-down of upcoming Wicked Wonderland shows and events and urged them to attend. "And it's never been about me," she added. "It's about you." Amen, sister.
You can find info on [:SITD:], Icon of Coil and Wicked Wonderland on Facebook and elsewhere online.