30 people in attendance, 300 decibels. That’s an appropriate way to sum up Racebannon’s performance at The Haunt last Thursday. Diligently working to bring some of the finest in underground music to the 607 area code, Bubba and Ithaca Underground presented the Indiana based noise group to a modest crowd, but that didn’t stop the band and sound guy from doing whatever it took to make ears bleed.
Unaware I would ever get the opportunity to see the group, all I can say is they are heavy… Very heavy. Opening with a crushing, sludgy jam, I knew right away that it was going to be a fun evening. The 4-pc from Indiana makes A LOT of noise.
While not overtly psychotic, Racebannon’s stage presence is definitely crazy… The chaotic nature of the noise punk scene necessitates a bit of off-the-wall antics. Not to say the band totally loses it or in any way endangers themselves or their audience, but it is certainly something to watch. Racebannon’s atypical song structure and punctuated rhythms throughout their songs left you wondering what state of mind the guys are in during their writing.
Their first time in Ithaca was sparsely attended, but they went for it on stage, anyway. Vocalist Mike Anderson kept it fun onstage between tracks, his maniacal laughter and spastic outbursts adding a layer of humor to the spastic, sludgy grooves and spitfire changes offered by the music.
Offering a solid selection of tracks off their latest release, , as well as some tasty bits from their array of previous output, their set was dense, crushing, and again… very loud.
I’d really like to see a tour consisting of Racebannon, The Jesus lizard, and Melvins… It’d be almost too perfect. Check out “The Hard Way” video on Youtube for a dose of what the band is all about… Good jam!
The first thing I’ll say about Cattledrums is that they are a “listeners” band. You’re probablt not going to not going to be able to follow it the first time out, whether you’re into the music or not. The band is very tight, and all 4 members are proficient musicians, but it’s like watching A.D.D in music form. Their songs are spazzy, technical, have lots of time changes and unique melodies and riffs, and progress like they were written out on a chalkboard. Progressive, experimental hardcore/punk type bands are always fun to watch, at least.
The players are very busy onstage, and you have to really know the changes to truly appreciate what they’re throwing down. The drummer is sick, and his easy yet powerful transitions were a pleasure to see in person. The singer was on the floor the whole time, back to the crowd, undoubtedly watching his band mates lay waste to their instruments. The very small crowd (less than 20) watched eagerly as they tore through their tracks.
They closed with an incredibly heavy drum/guitar track, ala Hella, making for my favorite song of the evening by the group. ATDI, Volta, Dillinger fans will be pleased, so check it out.
My apologies go out to Hi, Donna Here who opened the show this evening, as it was necessary to indulge in my longtime calzone obsession. D.P. D’oh!