Goblin Cock, Warship, Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band @ Rickshaw Stop, 2/26/09

Ah….Noise Pop. I generally can find one non-uber indie rock snob show to attend per festival. The Rickshaw is a place I only sporadically attend for shows….but occasionally, they pull a really good one out. I saw M.I.A. here, and it was one of the coolest shows I’ve ever seen. It’s tiny, the sound is LOUD, and the attendees are always cutting edge tastemakers.

I caught the last few songs of Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band, which is not a band for me. They wear vests. Their only female member has the mindless task of thumping two staffs with tambourine type materials on the ground like ski poles. As is often the case w/ Noise Pop shows, I feel like someone randomly stuck this band into the lineup. I don’t get it.

Next was Warship, deemed “metalcore innovators”. Hmmm…The three piece shocked me when they started playing and the singing came from the drummer. Now, I’ve seen bands do a song where the drummer sings, but never an entire set. You’d think it would be impressive…and it was, for a bit. But, I found the whole setup discombobulating. For one, having the drummer do the singing gave me the odd thought that the guitarist and bassist were lazy. Like, they’re ONLY playing the guitar. I realize that sounds odd, but coupled with the fact that the balance just felt off with the singing coming from the back of the stage, it just didn’t do it for me. That, and the vocals are decidedly emo. Not for me.

Finally, time for Goblin Cock. The stage is being set up by the band, but they are wearing shirts and trucker caps that say ‘Goblin Cock Crew’ and ‘Goblin Cock’s Guitar Tech’ and such. One guitar has a sticker that says ‘Slut’ by the frets. Some skulls are placed on the keyboards. The fog juice is poured, some ‘tallica is cranked, and it’s time for Goblin Cock.

The band reemerges wearing cloaks, each with their own personality. The guitarist’s face is covered in sheer black. The horns go up- the most deliberate horns I’ve ever seen thrown by a band. Now, the name Goblin Cock might lead you to believe that this is some kind of joke. And to a certain extent, it is. Goblin Cock is making fun of metal a bit. It’s a side project of sorts for Pinback, who are about as indie and indie rock gets. So, they’re basically telling us that they are an indie rock band that can crank out some really awesome doom metal, and because they aren’t by nature a metal band, they are going to compensate by having a ridiculous name, a high concept aesthetic, and an overly metal stage presence. I love it.

Lead singer Rob Crow is an enigmatic frontman, and that is saying a lot considering all but his mouth was covered. His intermittent “WE ARRRRRE GOBLINNNNNNNNNNN cock.” statements were hilarious.

They meandered through tracks from their two albums, as well as some outstanding covers, such as Tears for Fears’ “Head Over Heels” (video below). I could have sworn that I heard a bit of “Seek and Destroy” in there, as well as “Relax (Don’t Do It)”. They do not use a setlist, so I was unable to confirm any of this 🙁

The band plays what can best be described as a three song medley, one song dripping into the other, then they take a break, throw some horns, hold up the skulls, say some funny things, and go back at it. The heavy bass was so loud that I thought my ear plugs weren’t in. Standouts were “Tom’s Song for TOF”, which they play a bit faster than the recorded version, “We Got a Bleeder”, “The Porpoise Song”, and “Kegrah the Dragon Killer” (probably my personal fave).

Crow’s voice is so cool. It is just perfectly pitched all the time, cutting the sludge of the music like an acid. They are all very technical musicians, effortlessly playing while displaying great showmanship.

Honestly, I don’t know how they can go back to playing Pinback shows after this. If the moshpit of atypical moshers at the Rickshaw, as well as good energy by everyone else in the crowd, was any indication of Goblin Cock’s effect on the crowd, it has to be a high for them. I saw Pinback when HRC was just a glimmer in my eye, and I remember being bored.

This was anything but. I can say without a doubt that, like the shirts they were selling at merch, I Love Goblin Cock.

“Kegrah the Dragon Killer”

Cover of “Head Over Heels”

“Tom’s Song”

OVERALL: 8.75/10
Goblin Cock performance: 9.5/10
Warship performance: 6.5/10
Mt. St. Helen’s Vietnam Band: 5/10
venue (Rickshaw Stop): 9/10
crowd/scene: 7.5/10
value ($12.00/ticket): 10/10
memorable: 8.75/10

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3 Comments

  1. floodfx

    02.27.2009

    Reply

    awesome show! definitely rocked out with their cocks out…

  2. Broadway Joe

    02.27.2009

    Reply

    I guess this means y'all enjoyed a lot of Cock last night?

  3. hardrockchick

    03.01.2009

    Reply

    Yes!

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