The circus rolled into town on a quiet Sunday evening at the Bootleg Theater in Los Angeles. Well, not the circus but a roadshow – the Graveface Roadshow, to be exact, with its three-ring circus of acts: Stardeath & White Dwarfs, Casket Girls and Night School.
Each band brought its own brand of spectacle. Night School, who opened the evening, showed off their instrumental acrobatics. The three female members led by Lexy Morte (formerly of Whirr) switched off on each other’s instruments – moving from set to bass to lead guitar and back.
Casket Girls, founded by Ryan Graveface (yes, the label’s ringleader), focused as much on mesmerizing performance art as their “eerie-pop” sounds with the two identically-dressed leading ladies – sisters Phaedra and Elsa Greene – echoing each other as if reflected in a funhouse mirror with coordinated tai chi-esque moves – all the while maintaining flawless deadpan stares. The illusion was broken toward the end of the set when the Greene’s left the stage to share intimate hugs with audience members, working methodically through the crowd as if on the campaign trail.
Finally in the center ring was Stardeath & White Dwarfs, who brought old-time showmanship to the evening with over-the-(big)-top stage smoke and blinding LED light towers coordinated to the sounds of their psychedelic rock.
Like the traveling carnival they were, the ladies from Night School and Casket Girls stayed to hang out at the bar, conversing with fans, watching their fellow acts and taking turns selling merch at the front. And then, just like that, the venue emptied, the vinyls and shirts were packed and the Graveface circus train chugged on to its next stop.
Stardeath and White Dwarfs