100 Shows of 2010 - #49: Chad America’s Birthday Bash @ Black Cat, 8/3/10

Should you ever find yourself at the Black Cat on an evening when Mister Chad America is behind the bar, well, you’re in for a treat. Not only is he one of the best drink slingers in town, but he’s also one hell of a dude. Oh, and a purveyor of perhaps the best beard in all of DC. So naturally, when it came time for Chad’s annual birthday throwdown, I had to go and pay my respects to the birthday boy, as well as take in the live entertainment that was so happily put together for all and sundry, in the form of (Stop Worrying And) Love The Bomb (who, sadly, I missed), The Electricutions, and The Drains. O, what fun it all was.

MINI RECAP: The Electricutions = Kablam! The Drains = Kapow! Overall score: B+.

My friend Rusty, who just so happens to be in my 2nd favorite of favorite DC bands (otherwise known as Suns of Guns) is a mighty talented dude, and has recently started moonlighting in another band, The Drains. He warned me that the band might not be “in my wheelhouse,” but anything that’s painfully loud and heavily influenced by painfully loud Brits is definitely good in my book. There was a great deal of snarling and posturing going on while The Drains were performing, and I had to love them for not only their wall of noise but their wall of attitude as well. And really, what gal doesn’t love the romantic balladry, nay poetry, of a song with the lyric, “I wanna fuck you tonight”? Ok, so perhaps not exactly chivalrous, but I like dudes who cut to the chase. I was really impressed overall with The Drains, for only their second show they’re already turning out to be formidable little upstarts. And we so love that around these parts.

The Electricutions was next, and while I knew nothing about them beforehand, I left knowing that this is one heck of a loud band. According to their Myspace, they play “early style Punk Rock/Garage/Rock and Roll” that’s “lyrically influenced by Woody Guthrie, Phil Ochs, and other protest singers.” I’d go along with that, for sure. They were thrashingly fierce, and the dueling guitars just slayed it again and again and again. I totally fell for their teeth-bared style, totally aggressive and totally enthralling. I found my mind comparing them on occasion to my much-missed Coachwhips, but a lot darker and with less of the jangly abruptness. But the grit and grime was there, oh yes. The Electricutions were more controlled chaos than The Drains, and didn’t quite threaten to self-destruct right there onstage. But man alive, they wished Chad well with one doozy of a noisefest.

All in all, it was a great night to celebrate the birthday of a great guy.

mp3: Happy Birthday (Loretta Lynn from Honky Tonk Girl)


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