April 17th, 2008

April 2008 concert 3: My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult at El Corazón

Last Friday (April 11) I went to El Corazón to see My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult. Originally Beehive were on the bill, so that was really who I was going to see, but unfortunately they had to cancel; I decided to go anyhow, as I know and enjoy at least one Thrill Kill Kult song ("Glamour Is a Rocky Road") and I was curious to see what the show would be like. Also on the bill were local bands Miss Solar System and Furniture Girls, and the Urban Bombshells burlesque troupe performed between the musical acts.

I don't have much to say about the opening acts. I came in late and missed much of Furniture Girls' set. This is the third time I've seen them in almost as many months, and they remain moderately entertaining but not really interesting to me. Perhaps next year they'll have developed further. I did think their music was a bit light for the bill, but they were the last-minute replacements for Beehive so that's excusable. As for Miss Solar System, they've added a drummer to their live lineup since I saw them last year, but since their music is already rhythm-heavy drum & bass, it's more for color than anything else. The music was pretty solid, but not really remarkable - I enjoyed it, but nothing really stood out for me. Like Furniture Girls, I'd like to see more growth from Miss Solar System; I feel like they could be more exciting than they have been.

The Urban Bombshells were also much less interesting than I expected. They performed three or four routines between each musical act. With one exception involving popping balloons, they did not perform stripteases, just themed dance numbers involving scantily-clad women, and the dancing (and striptease) was really more just prancing about in a vaguely enticing manner. One routine involving a maiden menaced by an evil priestess of sorts and her minions involved a lot of flailing about on or near the stage floor, so most of it was only visible to the front row of the audience. The Urban Bombshells could have been a fun addition to the show, but I ended up feeling I'd rather have seen another band on the lineup.

My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult are the duo of Groovie Mann (vocals) and Buzz McCoy (synths, backing vocals). Appearing with another synth player (throughout the show) and a female vocalist (on most songs), they played a mix of heavy dance music influenced by industrial rock, goth rock, surf rock, and even disco. Both the style and substance of the music evoke exploitation films of the Sixties, reveling in sex, drugs, rock and roll, and a little flirting with Satanism on the side. As a show, it was tamer than I expected, particularly for a twentieth-anniversary tour; there were no dancing girls or other theatrics, just video clips running on the curtain behind the band. However, that did put the focus on the music, which was plenty of entertainment in itself. Although they didn't play "Glamour..." as I hoped they would, they did play many early tracks including the hits "Kooler Than Jesus", "Sex on Wheelz", and "The Days of Swine and Roses". Thrill Kill Kult got me bopping and dancing about, and made up for the lackluster earlier groups. They brought the fun to the show, and I'm glad I went.

Only six photos from this show, three of Thrill Kill Kult, one each of the other bands and of an Urban Bombshells dancer; the photos start here.