Apr 12, 2011

Boomgates. Bright Idea / Cameo.

Eddy Current Suppression Ring put on the best punk show I’ve ever seen. And I don’t mean punk as a style of music, but whatever it was about the original incarnation, whatever DIY exuberance, whatever magic connection it had to its audience, a true you/me/us, Eddie Current has it in spades. It was jaw dropping. There were maybe only twenty or so of us in the club, but they performed like their life depended on it.

Lead singer Brendan Suppression was a nervous bundle of energy who seemed to find his peace while performing, despite the fact that he was stalking back and forth on the stage like a slightly less manic Cornholio. It was the release of being truly yourself, even if that self is a bit twitchy and tightly wound. During instrumental portions he would lean wearily on his bandmates and hold his mic to their chests, like some sort of autistic attempt to plug directly in to their heartbeats, which seemed profoundly sweet. Towards the end of the show, after climbing all over the stage and merchandise table, he cautiously staggered into the audience while the band strummed and thumped and riffed furiously as if they could conjure up a secular rock n’ roll rapture right then and there. Drenched in sweat, Brendan repeated his mic gesture, touching each of us in turn as a sort of punk rock communion, sharing with us their energy and adding the sound of our bodies to their mix. A fan held a cold can of beer to the back of his neck to cool him off, and then it was over.

I’ve loved and thrived off music for ages, but that night was an epiphany. Fuck the hippies, this was the real thing. In that moment I felt like we all—all of us in the club, everybody on stage—loved one another; like we’d all just shared a communal vision of something rare and astonishing and perfect and beautiful. No church revival could ever compare.

Boomgates is (so far) a one off featuring Brendan and friends (Trial Kennedy, Teen Archer, The Twerps, Dick Diver), and it has a definite ECSR vibe, but softened by the addition of Stephanie Hughes’ dulcet voice. It’s a looser, poppier affair that just wants to hang out with you and settle comfortably onto your heart. The summery Bright Idea trundles along on a strolling, rubbery bass that falls somewhere between a relaxed ECSR and the Go-Betweens, and the interplay of Brandon’s vocals and Steph’s backing whoah-o-ohs make me think of old C-86 tunes or Slumberland releases. The guitars are still nice and trashy, though. B-side, Cameo, lets Steph take lead on the vocals before Brendan comes in with an homage to Lou Reed’s talking songs, only with an Australian accent and having to do with relating some weird dream he had. It alternates between the story and the sharply jangly chorus where they all erupt, singing “you’re just a cameo in my dreams”.

In short, they are expectedly awesome, and “for your information, this is all you need to know”.

P.S.: They have a new single coming out on April 18th on Smart Guy Records.


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