Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Garage Dogs at The Abbey Lounge

There is a history in this town, and I'm on the outside. As soon as I got to the Abbey Lounge that Friday night, I could tell that The Garage Dogs had been on this scene longer than I have been in this country. People are impatient, and they murmur to one another a little nervously, like they are waiting to reunite with an old girlfriend who they know has had a cooler life than them since the split.

The band know it too. You can see in their faces as they quickly set up to play that they are the ones who have been living it up, and they just want to show us one more time that they were the ones we should have stuck with. Their urgency to get to the noise-making makes me excited to see them too.

I'm just a few feet from the lead singer of the three brothers who make up the majority of the band. He sets up a large keyboard in front of him precariously on a bar stool, and I can see that this show will be a balancing act all the way. The keyboard takes a pounding from the first song in, as he beats out a rhythm more than a melody, with wiry fingers. For a while I can't take my eyes off that keyboard, listing violently back and forth. Stretching his whole body to sing out over us all, he doesn't seem to care if he loses his instrument, so I let it go.

It's all one breakneck song really, pouring energy over us. The Garage Dogs shake and writhe and give us everything we need for our money. I had heard the band was really shock rock, and they could be expected to do anything on stage to get the crowd moved and moving. In the end they don't strip-naked or simulate sex with a stuffed toy, but I'm shocked by the time I leave all the same. How well do the new bands on the Boston scene need to perform to beat this sound?

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