“This is the end,
Though I saw it coming before we went to bed,
No I never could be the one for you.
This is the end,
Though I saw it before we started,
And no one’s gonna be broken-hearted here.”
~”This Is The End”, She Wants Revenge
There are certain bands that I will always associate with inspiring me to write my site, and She Wants Revenge is one of them. When I found their debut album in late 2005, it quickly became one of several records that reinvigorated my dying interest in music. Dark and romantic, Depeche Mode-ian in descent, She Wants Revenge made me feel something I had thought was lost.
I’ve been so busy that it didn’t really hit me that this might be the last time I EVER see them until 15 minutes before they hit the stage. This made me incredibly reflective; especially when I realized that earlier that day, I had seen another figure that was instrumental in the beginning of my site having a late lunch/early dinner at a table next to me at my favorite down the street cafe: Mickey Avalon.
I can remember the first time I saw She Wants Revenge at BFD in 2006:
And the second time, at The Warfield in 2006:
They looked a little different then. Since those first two times, I wrote about them many times in this space. From playing short supporting sets at festivals, to selling out my favorite venues, to playing a small room during the day at SXSW for a dozen people, to walking the red carpet and DJing a big fancy event, to playing a song I requested in their homeland of the San Fernando Valley…I was there. I even got to interview Adam Bravin!
And here we were, at our 15th show together since the beginning, seven years ago. The last one.
As the curtain lifted and the first notes of the first song they wrote together, “Black Liner Run”, began – one of my favorites- I stopped reflecting and became immersed in my last show with She Wants Revenge.
While I stood there, I watched the faces of the fans up front. Mainly girls, I could see bits of myself over the years in them as they sang along. Part of the beauty of SWR’s music is that, while written by men, it really speaks to women. And that’s part of the allure; their music is a reflection of how we want the world to see us. Isn’t that how we choose our favorite bands? We want them to in some way reflect who we are within.
The show was a celebratory moment for the band, who brought members of Plexi onstage to play a song, a band that was influential to them in the beginning. They spoke often of their plight, how they’ve changed…Justin has a family now and Adam is the President’s DJ!
They described the Bladerunner influence in “All Those Moments” and “Rachael”. They played a stripped down version of “Us”, with just Adam and Justin at the forefront of the stage. For “Disconnect”, I almost turned around and slapped someone who loudly yawned during this very personal instrumental- see my interview with Adam for more on that – but his death stare at the offending individual was punishment enough.
I can remember, at the end of 2005, when I first listened to their album, how it got me with the first few notes of “Red Flags and Long Nights”. But it was always “Sister” that really did it to me. There’s something about that song that I really connect with, especially when I’ve seen it live. So to hear that one for maybe the last time ever made those a very dramatic and intense five minutes.
While there was a melancholy to the set as a whole, it ended on a high note, as we danced together one last time for “Out of Control” and screamed “I wanna fucking tear you apart!”. If you’ve ever been to a SWR show and heard the female dominated audience’s combined voice for that line, no man would ever do a woman wrong again.
I’ve said goodbye to several bands who have meant a lot to me over the past six years in this space, whether it be a break up or a death. As I left the Roxy, it felt like another chapter had closed on HRC’s life. How much longer will I continue to do this before I feel the need to move on?