The queue of fixed gear bikes chained to train bridge support columns is what welcomes you to Kung Fu Necktie on most nights. This one is was no different. One can almost sense the mishmash of messengers and shut-ins dancing their Dickies off before one note is heard from this menagerie of abrasive bands. Alas, there were many heavy notes.
The Atlas Moth, armed with a trio of guitarists and vocals reminiscent of a possessed cat with his tail slammed in a door, pummeled their way through a set of bone-jarring post metal. The short set contained genre-defying elements of synth and psychedelic freak outs, interwoven between a massive riff fest with songs from their 2009 debut A Glorified Piece of Blue Sky.
Harvey Milk, the underground sludge cult band from Athens, GA who came out of hiding in 2008, stole the show with their mind-bending and slightly Melvins-esque mix of hushed melody and math-ed out metal. Although most of the vocal prowess was on the Captain Caveman side, the spectacle of songs from albums Life..The Best Game in Town and Special Wishes had hoods bobbing like greased pistons.
Coalesce, the punk/hardcore metal legends from way back when, wasted no time erupting from the stage with spastic blasts of blunt abrasion. This sent the bike messengers into the furious whip of a caustic pit as singer Sean Ingram kept on slashing his nodes to ribbons. While a fracas ensued near stage right, he noted “Don’t tell me a fight broke out during an anti violence song!” The crowd pulsed along with a career-spanning set that included tracks from Ox, the 2009 album which peppered plenty of year-end best lists. Carabiner metronomes swung from a forest of moving jeans like stage compasses vibrating true north, and the show collapsed triumphantly in dark swatches of smiles and sweat.