Sunday, March 13, 2016

Concert Review: Le Butcherettes @ Underground Arts - Philadelphia, PA 03/11/16

At its least, a concert is entertaining.  When it is good it is art.  When it is at its best it is a statement. Friday night Le Butcherettes made a statement.

If you do not know Le Butcherettes here is a quick run down.  They are a three piece garage punk band out of Guadalajara, Mexico.  The lead singer and guitarist is Teri Gender Bender.  She is made of equal parts Chrissie Hynde, Siouxsie Sioux, Karen O, and Wendy O.. Williams.

It's not just about the music.  It is about the energy and the message.   Their shows are legendary statements.  I was getting to see Le Butcherettes at Underground Arts in Philadelphia which is a great place to see a band like this.  It is an intimate basement club with a small, low stage that puts you right into the action with the band. What was even more interesting was the crowd that had assembled to see them.  It was a mix of old and young.  Hipsters and Metal Heads.  All following the cult of Le Butcherettes.

Fellow staffer Tom and I arrived early.  Underground Arts had a series of large, comfortable sofas that Tom and I set up camp on.  We were unaware that there was a third act.  They dimmed the lights and out came Eureka the Butcher.

Eureka the Butcher is Marcel Rodriguez-Lopez.  The percussionist and keyboardist from The Mars Volta. He hit the stage and played his groove oriented chill music.  It was good.  Real good.  It was exactly what we needed...or didn't need as we were so relaxed on that sofa we almost fell asleep.  I would love to see his act at a different place and a different time.  The crowd was into him and so were members of The Dead Ships who stood in the audience and watched.

Next up was The Dead Ships.  The are a garage rock trio out of Los Angeles.  They are what I always envisioned The Strokes should be now.  It's almost as if they are left to carry the torch.

They came out strong with a ton of energy.  They told stories of Stalin and rocked the crowd.  How many bands can you say that about?

They had a great sound and a great sense of humor.  They hung out all night and could be found by the merch table.  If you get a chance to see this band I would spend the money and go.

It was 11:00 when Le Butcherettes took the stage. The words of Henry Rollins filled the air to let us know of their arrival.  They came out with an explosion.

Teri does more than just sing the words.  She performs.  It is art.  She comes at you with what Tom describes as a masculine energy.  She is both fierce and sexy.  Her voice can cut right through you or serenade you to swoon.

They started off strong with favorites like "They Fuck You Over" and "Sold Less Than Gold".  They energy formed a trance like state that Teri herself would rip you out of with the glare of her eyes.  She would lock on and just stare.  And I liked it.

She often growled and sometimes smiled.  Her voice was melodic, shrill, haunting, and pitch perfect.  Her movements were sharp and deliberate.  It's creation was beautiful.

Le Butcherettes have worked with Henry Rollins, Iggy Pop, and John Frusciante.  That is what kind of company they keep.  Their lyrics drip of dark and heavy subject matter.  They deal with rape and women being treated and sold like slave. Not always an easy thing to pull off and keep and audience entertained.

For good measure, towards the end of the show, they threw in their cover of "Wrecking Ball".  The crowd went wild and Teri even smiled.  The band performed to perfection for over an hour.  Teri looked like a psychotic prom date by the end of the show with lip stick and mascara every where. Tom would not have been surprised if she jumped off the stage and attacked him.

It was almost like watching a play.  It made you think.  It made you feel.  It was more than music.  It was art.  It was a statement.

See you when the needle drops!


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