Here's a bunch of photos that I took at the big Off With Their Heads show on Thursday night; technically the show was put on by the Whitney House, but it was held at the Charter Oak Cultural Center, which was a good thing since it really would've been too big a show for everybody to fit into the Whitney House basement like the previous two times that OWTH came through this area. And seriously, this show was friggin' huge-- there was still plenty of room to walk around and stuff, but pretty much everybody I've ever seen at CT house show over the past two or three years was there (save for a couple of people I can think of off the top of my head), plus I saw some people whom I'd never thought I'd see at a DIY Hartford punk show, but whatever. Some technical fuckups with the sound equipment had me sorta bummed out about halfway through the night, but OWTH's set was a satisfying near-riot (even OLD PEOPLE were stage diving) so in the end it didn't even matter.
The Slow Death (from Minnesota, a retuned version of Pretty Boy Thorson and The F'n A's, whom I think played The Whitney House basement at least once) started things off early because they had another show in Brooklyn later that same night. Mikey Erg is drumming for them on this tour, and he ran through the Spin Doctors' greatest hits during the soundcheck, which was sorta hilarious. One of the Hartford Advocate's offshore indians labeled The Slow Death "country-punk" or something, but "Another Song About Phones" (their new 7", which isn't even listed on the Kiss of Death web site yet) can be pretty easily matched up with the a-side of that mysterious Ean Eraser single, so fans of that new-type fake '80s wave-o rock could probably dig The Slow Death too, and not just the one or two people who bought Armchair Martian records.
Iron Hand were up next, their first set in 7 or 8 months I guess, and they freakin' killed. I'd remembered them as being really heavy, but I didn't remember them playing with this much quickness; instead of their usually steamrollering sludgy/crusty stuff, they almost sounded like '86 vintage Youth of Today. Of course, I could only hear the guitar and drums, no vocals or bass, which maybe explains why my thinking is so far off. Stefan from Estrogen Highs is playing bass for them now, with a new drummer, Ross (ex-Tombstone Minds), who was awesome. I stood behind the drums for a few songs and watched him, and almost couldn't believe how dead-on fast he was. Then Dead Uncles went on right afterwards, and because of the sound issues I couldn't really hear everything they were doing, only that people were moving around during their set, which was good. Brian from Iron Hand even jumped in like a maniac for the sing-along part to "Village Idiots", which was one of the high points of the night. They might've said they were going to do a cover at one point and then decided not to, I don't really remember.
Whatever problems the P.A. presented were sort of erased once Off With Their Heads started playing. I don't know if it's because they were the only band to set up on the stage, holding the sound in and making them sound better, but OWTH seemed to have the best sound of the night. It didn't seem like their set list has really moved at all since their first Whitney House appearance two years ago, but it didn't really matter. Like I said back then, seeing Off With Their Heads reminds me of how much I still like punk rock, even if I act like an indie rock prick most of the time. I ended up going home with a rectangular bruise on the outside of my leg from being bumped against the stage so many times, just like after seeing shows at the Tune Inn and the Norwalk Anthrax years ago.
"That Must Be Nigel With The Brie"
Slow Death -
"Another Song About Phones"
Iron Hand -
Dead Uncles -
"Wholesome Sleep Deprivation"
(all of these files are now listen-only)