I mostly use MySpace as a place where old friends and enemies alike can hunt me down with surprising ease, but once in a while– generally on the order of a few times a week– I get MySpace spam too, scantily clad “real girls” advertising some online hookup service or another.
Usually they’re pretty dull, but sometimes you come across something that just makes you smile. To wit:
Obviously, we’re soul mates.
March 25th, 2008
In the end, it wasn’t so very secret.
Ostensibly, you would find out about it via MySpace, by having the band listed as a friend and having the fortune of logging with the right window of time. Or you could have read the blurb in The Mercury and tried to guess at their oblique reference to the venue (and having never before been to The Satyricon, would have failed that).
I got lucky and happened to be going to Matador’s site to purchase the album– Real Emotional Trash– when I saw the blurb about the show off of the main page. You could go and pick up a wristband at specified Music Millenium to get in to the show, or you could just go to the door close to when the show might open and hope to get in, which is what we did.
I expected a crowd to have already massed, but we were lucky. Space was at a premium, but the secret seemed to be well-kept enough to keep us from being crushed to death.
After spending the first hour outside and the second hour in the bar next door, thoughts of playing Arkanoid crushed under the overwhelming mass of people in the bar, the show finally got rolling.
“Welcome to the free show,” SM said when at last they took the stage, “would that they could all be.”
After sorting out Joanna’s battery problems, they opened as the album does, “Dragonfly Pie” leading in to “Hopscotch Willie”, from there tracking through “Gardenia”, “Real Emotional Trash”, and a handful of other tracks, all from the new album. Despite some minor lyrical missteps, they were on their game, with Janet as always pulling everything together with her impeccable timing even in the face of the daunting SM, who likes to toy with his composition and delivery at every turn. But that what makes a live show worth it, isn’t it?
I was standing right in front of the speaker on stage left and had to improvise an earplug. That wasn’t an ideal situation, but it was good to be up so close in such an intimate venue. Spencer guessed that there were maybe 200 people which, in The Satyricon, means it’s basically packed. And, Oregon being Oregon, it wasn’t long before the cheeba smoke filled the room. (At one point, Joanna joking, “We’re allergic to weed.” SM quips about not smoking the reefer, Janet replies, “Obviously, you’re not from Oregon.”)
They wound the set down, again, as per the album, with “Wicked Wanda”, before being urged back on for the nigh-inevitable encore number. “We don’t really know internet etiquette,” said SM as he returned to the stage, questioning whether or not an encore was “appropriate” for an internet secret show, but they obliged anyway with, if I recall the name correctly, “Church on White”.
As they left the stage a second time, the crowd was still hungry for more: a chant from the center section came up, “MALK-A-MUS! MALK-A-MUS!” In true call-and-response fashion, a second contingent began their own shout: “JICKS!” “MALK-A-MUS!” “JICKS!”
Apologetically, Steve returned to the stage and told us that they would like to play more but they didn’t have anything else prepared. To the sound booth: “Don’t you guys have some house music to play about now? I know the Satyricon has fallen on some hard times…” Cue: house lights, music, and the small crowd quickly disperses, getting a bonus as we head out the door: a numbered show poster. Very cool, and certainly the best damn free show that I’ve ever seen. I look forward to catching them again at the Wonder in May.
March 7th, 2008