Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Show Report:

I am sorry this took so long to get online. It's been a busy few weeks and I finally have a minute to sit down and collect my thoughts on this.

For those who don't know, Subliminal Self was invited to head up Detroit on July 30th. Joining us were local bands: Humachine and The Morning Star.

I'd been looking forward to playing Detroit for awhile. Not only is it the home city of SynthCleveland's sibling group DEC (Detroit Electronica Coalition), but I was hoping to hook up with Mr. Davecat, a friend I'd not seen in a very long time. So, when this opportunity came up (much thanks to Humachine for inviting us!), I jumped on it.

Anyways, gear still torn down from the past Club 10-34 show, I threw everything in the car and we headed off the Motor City.

Due to traffic/construction, we arrived at the club (Paycheck's Lounge) about 45 minutes after the start of soundcheck / load-in. None of the other bands were there yet, so I didn't feel too bad. Oh, before I get into all of that, let me paint you a mental picture of the scene. Paycheck's is located in an area of Detroit called Hamtramck. This is *not* some posh 'burb or even a trendy urban spot. Nope. We're talking very blue collar, VERY Polish. (I'm pretty sure the guy who owned the Polish Grocery didn't even speak English). That said, it wasn't a "bad" neighborhood, though you could have fooled us, just poor.

Incident #1: While Greyson and I were loading gear into the club, Genevieve had an awful experience with the bar patrons (all old Polish guys). She had wandered over to the bar to see if there was anything she'd be interested in drinking. While leaning over the bar, one of the crusty guys at the bar turns to her and asks "Hey baby, want to see something?" and it was only seconds before his friends were joining in the womanizing. Genevieve retreated to the back of the club and stuck close the rest of the evening. These guys had obviously not seen a woman, who wasn't missing her front teeth from a bar fight, in a long while.

Humachine (who showed up about 20minutes after we did) opened up the night with their brand of Psalm69-era Ministry. Not exactly my thing, though they had some good ideas going. Unfortunately, their set was hampered by problems with the cd player fading in and out. I was starting to worry that it was the sound system, but we had no such issues. But, they ignored it and kept going through their set, like professionals.

After a bit of negotiation with The Morning Star, we went on next. It wasn't our best show, but certainly not our worst. Though some of the songs, like 'Nostalgia' and 'Forged from Steel' got a little broken along the way, we put out our best performance yet for 'Song for Tomorrow' and 'Resolution' came off really well. While we were performing, Davecat came in. So, I was excited that he got a chance to hear us. The last music of mine that he's heard was back in my noise days with Inovercy. So, this was definitely a different vibe going on ;)

We also got heckled for the first time! Greyson had made a reference to Detroit, while we were onstage. From the back comes "Yea, Detroit is a great town for ROCK AND ROLL!" I thought it was Genevieve and told her to quiet down, but turns out it wasn't ;)

Anyways, so after the set, we greeted the Cat, exchanged stories and such. Also got a chance to talk with the guitarist from Humachine, who was much sweeter and nicer than you'd imagine a guy spitting out power chords like it's cheap bourbon to be, as well as Brian from DEC (who was, unfortunately, the only non-performing DEC'er to show). More than our performance, chatting with all these fine folks proved to be the highlight of the evening.

Incident #2: Turns out that $5.00 admission cost was a joke. Admittedly, I don't know if the drunk guys at the bar, who were 90% of our audience, would have slapped down more than the cost of a MGD to see a bunch of wussy bands, but regardless, there was no one collecting. Therefore, the only cash we took home that night was sales from 2 cd's.

Unfortunately, we missed most of The Morning Star's ultra short set (I was told that they'd only had the current lineup for a month or such, so perhaps that accounted for the set length), since we were packing our gear up.

Overall, it was kind of a toss up. It was great to see the 'Cat again and the other bands were certainly cool, but I don't think we gained many new fans that night, as we'd hoped. Unless, of course, we're now a hit in the hot Polka clubs around Detroit and I don't know it..