Opening the night was the speed and aggression of the Vacillators. A little like angry sex this band’s set was fast, raw and mind blowing fun. Boldly gritty Camille leads this band with a street wise playfulness that’s both refreshing and seductive. Punching through their set with unrelenting focus her band mate were unstoppable work horses. Kids, this is what punk looks like beyond adolescent angst and man is it beautiful. Tempered and honed, the power of this band was undeniable. To all you youngsters out there, you can only hope that your band will grow up to be this good.
Playing next was the always awesome Pitchfork Motorway and if the Vacillators’ set was like going 65 in a 35 then watching these boys was like one of those car chases you see on CNN. As always the boys attacked their songs with a wild abandon without regards to the innocent bystanders in the audience and as one of them I can’t tell you how great that is. Dangerously fun you feel like the worlds going to hop the track at any second and at these speeds who knows what crazy damage might be done. This band knows how to play a boldly tight rock n roll that’s amazing to behold. The two guitar attack of Barry and Shiggy is bold and diverse while the rhythm section of Doug and The Swede impishly play like madmen with explosives. Hands down this band plays faster, harder and with a true grasp of punk rocks emotional fury.
Finally, the Thundering Asteroids! took the mic and went to town. What they lacked in speed they make up in fun. Always to bell of the ball this band played their nerdcore tunes with a playful joy that is highly intoxicating to an audience. Celebrating the addition of their latest drummer (a resource they seem to burn through faster than quarter in an arcade) this band had an amazing set. Playing all the favorites and a few new tracks, the band got us singing along and pumping our fists to all the nostalgia inducing pop references in punk form. Clearly one of my own personal favorite bands currently playing Portland, I was not disappointed. Wild, fun and able to make you feel that all that useless pop knowledge crammed in your head isn’t worthless; I hope this drummer sticks around a while so we can get a few more great shows out of this band this summer.
I’m telling you if your not currently supporting local music, you don’t know what you’re missing because they are the most loyal and appreciative group of people you’ll ever meet. So for those of you that didn’t make it to this show, remember there’s bands playing somewhere in town every night of the week. You just have to pick a show and go.