I felt like there was a white duck following me around Mercury Lounge on Saturday, abruptly squealing “AFLAC!” every couple of songs. The occasion was the Rose Hill Drive show, and I spent much of it feeling the limits of my flesh and bones, wondering if I needed supplemental insurance.
It was about three songs into the set that I was wondering if my regular insurance would cover all the hemorrhaging my ears were doing. You see, Rose Hill Drive was making my ears bleed. Sharp, loud, intense — guitar, bass, drums — ouch, ouch, ouch. It was a cranking start to the show.
The room was crowded and loose for a Saturday night, and they lit right into it. There was a “Showdown” early on, and they wasted no time getting onto the Hendrix bus with Band of Gypsy’s “Power of Love,” but song titles didn’t seem to matter much to me and my ears. There are few bands doing what Rose Hill Drive can do every night — Wolfmother, Earl Greyhound and, um, you tell me.
But none are doing the base, primal power trio face-melter thing with as much talent and zest as these guys. Not many have ever done it — Jimi Hendrix, Cream and, um, you tell me. I’ll take these under appreciated boots-to-the-head over whatever you got. I hadn’t felt this way about a band since the first time I saw Gov’t Mule for the first time almost a decade ago. A couple songs into the set and my head was buzzing, my nose was running and my ears were bleeding. What would happen if I lost my hearing — or sense of smell or taste for that matter? The rock was burrowing deep into me like a parasite, nibbling away at my soul from the inside. [AFLAC!]
Read on to see if Uncle Neddy makes it through the night…
Seattle band The X-Ray Eyes put on a solid show recently at Chop Suey, adroitly playing songs that were clearly familiar to the audience while still making time for newer material. Their sound grounded solidly in straight-ahead rock with just a tinge of folk, the three-piece act put on a polished show.