Live at Globe Hall!
BY TIM HINELY
Real nice double bill of two Merge artists, one who hasn’t released an album in 5 years (that would be Vertical Scratchers debut Daughter of Everything) while one, Mike Krol, definitely being more on the up and coming.
There was a definitely a good crowd milling around Globe Hall, some even enjoying the place’s terrific BBQ which is in the room right next door.
I do have to say that my biggest pet peeve of all happened tonight when there was a full merch table of both bands stuff but .,…..no one there. I assumed it was being manned after the show but man, a weeknight with early work looming the next day I wanted to zip out when the show was over. Aw well.
Vertical Scratchers did not disappoint, as the four members held down their positions, not just sturdily but mightily. Also, I must add that if the music thing doesn’t work out for the vocalist then he has a career in stand-up comedy as the dude was a completely deadpan riot most of the night. Oh and did I bother to mention that the maniac drummer has 7 arms? I do know that the band did play at least one brand new songs called “Song of Earth” so perhaps a new record will be just around the corner.
I wanted to take the folks in Mike Krol’s band home and feed ‘em some soup and Castor Oil ‘cos they were all bloodied and beaten (the guitarist apparently had emergency surgery while at SXSW the week before and Mike himself was losing his voice….he mentioned a few other members were sick as well).
Did any of this stop Krol and Co from putting on a great show? I say emphatically HELL NO! They put on a terrific set complete with a strobe light that got me all dizzy and a synthesizer that was on ‘ludes that Mike kept leaning down to mess with (plus his trusty sidekick, the tambourine, on his arm).
They played mostly stuff off the righteous new record, Power Chords (Merge) plus a handful off his Merge debut, 2015’s Turkey. Yeah, people keep mentioning Ty Segall when comparing Krol’s music, but the one thing that Krol has on Segall is that Krol would hand you a pair of ear plugs before blowing your ears out (Segall would never do that).
Seriously though, the band rocked mightily while tunes like the title track, “Little Drama” and “Blue and Pink” all sounded fabulous. Also, until Krol mentioned that he was having voice issues (from 7 gigs in 3 days at SXSW) I could not tell (thanks in part to vocal fx and plenty of distortion).
The guy and his crew know how to entertain and are definitely worth leaving the house for. Krol gets my vote, I say put him on the ballot in 2020 and watch the country improve!