Gwar. I am not sure why I keep going to their show. I’m pretty hard to offend…but they manage to offend me every single time.
Let’s start at the beginning. Against the Grain started the show. Looking like they just got off work at the local mechanic shop and ran straight to practice to play tribute to their favorite bands: Anthrax, Motorhead, and Slayer. I don’t know if those are their favorite bands, but their songs definitely had the essence. Against the Grain is a great name for that band. The few times they hit a recognizable groove they were enjoyable. Otherwise, they definitely hit my ears against the grain.
Local heroes Toxic Holocaust took the stage next and amped up the energy ten-fold. Their high intensity, bouncy grooves, extreme volume, and style all make for the perfect recipe for a metal band. A little 80s glam, a lot 90s thrash, Toxic Holocaust really had the crowd moving and the pit in an all out frenzy.
Sacred Reich, the band I was most excited to see, didn’t disappoint. Touring with the recently released “Awakening,” their first album in over 20 years, they brought a more refined set to the night. Looking like they still love what they do, vocalist and bassist Phil Rind talked quite a bit between songs. Introductions of the band, words of encouragement for his fellow man, advice on how to make the world a better place, and appreciation for the fans. Sacred Reich was the class act of the evening.
And then there was GWAR. First, a little history from their own words:
their story begins in the deepest reaches of outer space. Long ago, the beings who would become the rock band GWAR were part of an elite fighting force, the Scumdogs of the Universe. … Once here, GWAR shaped the face of the globe, destroying and rebuilding the natural world, and giving
Use Your Collusion Tour is a classic GWAR tour. Talking evil toilets, broadcast instructions from fake organization of importance, a cartoon-esque set… the first thing we encountered was decapitation complete with the spewing of a blood-like substance. Fans bathed in the fluid. No, fans reveled in the fluid. I’ll go so far as to say, fans seeked out the fluid!
Grotesque, overly exaggerated genitalia, out of this world costumes, I oddly find guitarist-horse hoof man sexy.
GWAR. Here is a bullet point description of how I feel about them.
- Their lyrics are ridiculous
- The storyline is something that a bored 14 year old boy could likely come up with
- Their costumes are that of a nightmare you’d have after watching 1993’s comedic movie “Freaked”
- They are blasphemous
- They are sacrilegious
- They are insulting
- Their mutilation of celebrities knows no boundaries
- They are hilarious
- The music is good
- They are highly entertaining
- They are offensive…really offensive
While I suspect many GWAR fans are fans of GWAR live rather than their music, I did see some fan familiarity with the songs. GWAR. They are something you should experience at least once in your life. I can’t name one GWAR album, yet somehow, they manage to keep me coming back.
Go see them. You’ll feel dirty when you leave and all that was humorously horrific during the show will stick with you for days. You’ll likely have a debate with yourself when you see the announcement that they are coming to your town again next year..but you’ll go. And you’ll enjoy it.