Last night the bands put on a great performance at the Music Hall of Williamsburg.
Article courtesy of C.J. Smith:
When the circus comes to town, everyone takes notice. But Wednesday night at Sound Fix Records in Brooklyn was not your typical Ringling Bros./ Barnum & Bailey event: In the center ring were garage-rockers Black Lips, who decided that a record store is a good a place as any to try and throw a circus.
The band is part of a thriving Atlanta indie-rock scene that also includes Deerhunter, Manchester Orchestra and others. Originally slated to be a simple in-store acoustic performance, the band decided to take it one step — OK, several steps — further, dubbing the event the "Black Lips Circus and Bad Kids' Parade." The band's shows are notorious for bad behavior both onstage and off — most famously involving several different kinds of bodily fluids, which the band has largely stopped doing — so the concept isn't much of a stretch. "It's always kind of a circus mentality of people being degenerates at our shows, so we decided to take it to the next level by inviting kids — not even at a show — to parade down the streets," Lips singer/guitarist Cole Alexander said of the event.
"We wanted to spice things up a little. It was kind of thrown together last minute, though," said bassist Jared Swilley — and that much was apparent. The circus part of the night was a tad bumpy due to a bunch of last-minute cancellations (including jugglers, ponies and a couple of other circus acts), but the band's acoustic set went ahead with burlesque dancers and a marching band that led the crowd into the streets for the second portion of the night, the "Bad Kids' Parade."
"We embody bad kids, and that's why we created the Bad Kids Circus, to parade down the streets, promoting juvenile delinquent behavior," Cole said of the parade. And while there was no overtly bad behavior along the parade route, it was nonetheless a rousing success. Fans poured from the record store, led by the Black Lips and the marching band, who played rousing anthems all the way to the Music Hall of Williamsburg, where the band hit the stage for a proper — well, kind of proper — show later in the night.
By the time the parade reached the venue, it had swelled to 200 or so people, complete with confetti launchers, fire-breathers, skateboarding bandmembers and fans in costume and face paint.
And the revelry only gained intensity when the band hit the stage for a typically rambunctious set. As the band tore through a set of fan favorites and songs from their brand-new fifth LP, Good Bad Not Evil, fans formed a giant pit, slam-dancing while crowd-surfers bounded from the stage.
Between the sweaty mess of bodies and beers being hurled into the air, barely a soul left the Music Hall dry.
The SELMANAIRES are: (from left to right) Herb Harris, Mathis Hunter, Tommy Chung, Jason Harris
Tommy Chung from Selmanaires answers:
favorite local artist? Bradford Cox from Deerhunter. Says Tommy, "All around creative personality...music, art, photography, graphic design (Cox has designed album covers for Black Lips and more recently The Coathangers). Its sometimes hard to make out lyrics at a Deerhunter show, but on top of all that, he's also an incredible singer."
what album are you currently listening to? "Tender Buttons" by UK band Broadcast. Constantly on standby: Can and 70's funk. CCR makes great driving music!
favorite local hang out? Manuel's Tavern.
one thing you love about your life? People in ATL. Despite how much its grown, there's still a small southern town feel. &nb sp;
Upon moving from Austin to Atlanta in 2000, twin brothers Herb and Jason Harris met Tommy Chung, and the trio had their first band practice at 73 Selman Street, the location from which they took their official title of the Selmanaires. The group played their first gigs after learning a slew of Rolling Stones and Stooges cover tunes on which they would let their drunken basement party audiences sign up to take turns at the mic stand. The Selmanaires’ original sound tread on quieter acoustic territory that featured stand-up bass, bongos, and a Wurlitzer, but the trio noticed their audience was more responsive to the rockers that closed their sets. Several years and equipment adjustments later, the Selmanaires added multi-instrumentalist Mathis Hunter to the line-up and released their debut record Here Come the Selmanaires in 2005. The band generated significant buzz and a solid following in their home state as a result of their impressive first effort that was built on the gorgeous vocal harmonies of the three originating members, as well as their affinity for the eccentric ass-shaking of late-seventies new wave artists like Devo and the Talking Heads. The band has just finished recording their sophomore release, and is gearing up for the Zig-Zag Live Fall Tour with the Black Lips.
Story by Andrew Lutwin
courtesy of Zig Zag Live
Stay tuned for Aaron's interview of the band!