Heavy Trash + Witch Hats | Glasslands Gallery | 8.08.2008


On the way home from All Points West my friend Kelly texted me, asking if I was going to Glasslands that night to see Heavy Trash. I wrote back saying I wasn't planning on it but as I live only a few blocks away and I would definitely be back in time for it, I said sure why not?

Admission, I had no idea who Heavy Trash were. Well, it would turn out I did know… I just didn't know it yet. Heavy Trash is Jon Spencer's rockabilly band with Matt Verta-Ray of Madder Rose. Blues Explosion was never my scene, though they were always great live, so I haven't really followed his career, obviously, but I was excited to see Spencer play somewhere this small and grungy.

If you're not familiar with Heavy Trash, Spencer does the same to rockabilly as he did to the blues — he explodes it. Well not really, but he does have that certain intensity so this is more Hazil Adkins than Chuck Berry. Spencer looks good in a suit, even when sweating up a storm — and it was hot in Glasslands.

Things got a bit wilder when King Khan showed up, complete with film crew, to once again steal steal some limelight from yet another band (he did it at McCarren Pool with Deerhunter and the Black Lips) though it was obvious it had been planned out in advance. It was a fun little surprise but I think I'm Khan-ed out for a while.

MP3: Heavy Trash – Way Out

Another surprise was Australian band Witch Hats who I also knew nothing about but ended up buying their record afterwards. Tall and skinny with Jesus & Mary Chain hairdos, they laid down a thick layer of of fuzzy, slightly gothy garage rock (think early-'80s Fall), powered by one of the best drummers I've seen in a long time. They were loud enough to knock you back a bit and I was annoyed with myself that I'd forgotten to bring earplugs. I could've done with a little less sludge and bet they're just a powerhouse with a good mix.

MP3: Witch Hats – Summer of Pain

The might just get a better mix tonight when Witch Hats and Heavy Trash play Santos Party House. If you're not too tired from the weekend, I highly recommend checking them out. And even if you are tired, these two bands will probably wake you up.

One Comment

  1. i had the same reaction when i first saw the heavy trash. it was about 1.5 years ago and they were opening for the sadies. it was a show a friend was going to and said we should come along. we get there and heavy trash start playing and i was blown away. about 3 songs in someone mentioned something about jon spensor..and i ask "you mean that is THE jon spensor ..right there..on stage" i had no idea. it was quite impressive.
    as for the witch hats they quickly reminded me why i dont like going to festivals. after about 3 straight weeks of fests (p4k, wicker park street fest (which has a good line up as those things go) and lolla) i was not so subtled reminded how great it was to be inches instead of miles away from a live band while they play. i also picked up the witch hats record and its very good. i hope they come back soon

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