Thursday, September 20, 2012

Photo: Firewater at 529

Posted By on Thu, Sep 20, 2012 at 11:24 AM

Firewater at 529
After watching Arrested Development play an epic set to what has to be the biggest crowd I’ve ever seen at the Goat Farm Wednesday night, I high-tailed it across town to catch Firewater’s show at 529. I snapped off one picture before the batteries in my camera crapped out. Too bad, but this one shot does capture the ecstatic mood of the room — pit stains and all. The six-piece ensemble, fronted by ex-Cop Shoot Cop vocalist Tod A, ran through a good mix of newer material from their latest album, International Orange, along with a fair amount of older numbers as well. “Three Legged Dog” was a particular highlight, as was their “book of the month club” bit when one of the guys from the band read a page from “Fifty Shades of Grey,” set to a faux porno soundtrack.

Firewater seems to have scaled things down in some very subtle ways since 2008’s The Golden Hour took shape as the group’s definitive merger of nihilistic post-industrial jangle mixed with various shades of Balkan, klezmer, and middle-eastern inflections. The emphasis for this latest round of songs, at least for Tod A, has drifted back in the direction of bedrock songwriting. Live, the set was a mixed bag of heavy, ethnic rhythms and expansive blues — rock music that isn’t necessarily concerned with rocking out. But the longer the band played on last night, the more explosive the show became.

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