Live Music Preview: June 5-17

The Woggles
“Go see a Woggles show. It will change your life” –Meredith Ochs, NPR’s All Songs Considered

The Woggles w. Cool Boobs, Huge Lewis, The Men From … Beyond!

The Mill – June 5 at 9:00 p.m. (Free, 19+)

If your first thought when seeing this headliner’s name was the children’s band that Jenna tried to break up during 30 Rock, you wouldn’t be alone. Luckily, the real Woggles are much cooler than their fake namesakes. Hailing from Atlanta, the quartet recalls the thrashing, trashing spirit of The Milkshakes, The Mummies and other garage rock royalty. While you have an idea of what they sound like, The Woggles separate themselves with their incendiary live show.

In some situations, a band’s written profile can be so breathless that it is laughable; the Woggles’ uses this same grandiose tone and florid adjectives like ‘nitro-fueled.’ But, unlike the touting PR emails I receive from other mediocre indie rock bands, The Woggles fully live up to their descriptions. With two decades of experience rocking crowds, the band starts off with their foot on the throttle and leaves a mess of sweating, heaving bodies in their wake. Lead singer The Professor Mighty Manfred takes it right to the crowd—literally, he likes to dance in the audience—while Flesh Hammer, Dan Elextro and Buzz Hagstrom stomp out the beat. If you like going to the Soulshake and Pressure Drop dance nights at Gabe’s, this show is right up your alley.

Pressed And w. It Is Rain In My Face

The Mill – June 15 at 9:00 p.m. ($7, 19+)

A little over a year ago, I talked about the band Pressed And, but I wasn’t previewing their show. Instead, I was discussing how I wanted folks to take more chances on music around town. I used Pressed And as the example simply because it was the show I had gone to most recently at the time, and I really liked what they played. Their music was relaxed and soothing. The sound of the Durham, N.C. duo embodies a journey through the empty iciness of space. Their music is spare and simple, but it does require engagement from the listener. Sonic touchstones for Pressed And include Manuel Gottsching’s E2-E4, witch house artists like Party Trash and Modern Witch, Com Truise and a more human Kraftwerk.

While it was not necessarily one of the most entertaining preformances I’ve watched in terms of showmanship—they didn’t do David Lee Roth high kicks or anything like that—it was a show that stuck with me for many months after I had seen it. The set engaged me mentally and spiritually. I felt loose after their show, a sensation that I really liked. Check them out this time around and maybe you can experience the feeling that I had back in February 2012.

Mac DeMarco w. Brooks Strause & The Gory Details

Gabe’s – June 17 at 9:00 p.m. ($10, 19+)

When I wrote about Montreal-based Mac DeMarco a few months ago, I discussed his infamous live performances and the quality of his music, which pulls from indie pop as much as it does from the smooth tunes of Steely Dan. As I walked into The Mill to see him then, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I’ve known of artists that were supposed to put on crazy live shows then proceeded to play a quiet show with no fireworks to speak of (i.e. Cat Power).

Luckily for me, Mac DeMarco wasn’t one of those people. While he was not having beer poured on him, he played a lively, energetic show that is, easily, the best show that I have seen so far this year. DeMarco and his band were extremely charming, ribbing the folks sitting to the right of the stage and cracking jokes with everyone else. He and his band rifled through songs from his albums Rock ‘N’ Roll Nightclub and 2 with great skill. They even added a super long melody of songs which included the immortal “Taking Care of Business” by BTO. If there was one problem with the show last time, it was that the tight confines of The Mill didn’t give people enough space to move. Dance space will not be a problem this time as he will be playing at Gabe’s. If you came out last time, I expect to see you there again. If you didn’t, put on your dancing shoes and expect to have a real good time.

A.C. Hawley is a guy. He rides a large frame red Schwinn. You’ve probably seen him at a concert. You may have even seen him drinking beer in your basement. You can follow him on Twitter at @acethoughts

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