Saturday, November 7, 2009

The largest fury crammed into the smallest space

As a bonus, until the second half of the belated Sonic Circuits review is posted, here is a brief bit about the recent Iron Lung show.

I know that Chris Moore contacted me multiple times about trying to move this to a larger space, but alas, it was to no avail. So, as with all out of pocket shows, this one took place at the little house that could, Silver Sprung’s own Corpse Fortress. While they have been a boon to the punk community for sometime now, offering space when there is none, there are two major drawbacks to this place (if you don’t count the sketchy crowds that one often finds milling about there).

A: It is not near anything, least of which is mass transit

B: It is like having bands play in a room the size of your apartment’s kitchen.

I must admit that, even for this show, I would not have gone were it not for the ride I was given.

We arrived late, but I was glad to have gotten there in time to hear the other band I was excited to see, Ilsa. However, unfortunately, upon opening the door to the basement, I was immediately met by bodies, and as such, was forced to enjoy the band by standing on the space immediately above the show.

My cohort and I hatched a plan to bum rush the steps after this to ensure a good spot for Iron Lung. Having a friendship with the band, my partner in crime was able to get us V.I.P. access to, quite literally, right beside the band. The layout went something like this. There was the wall of the room, then me, then one foot, then the drums, then one foot, then guitar, then a small side gallery of people, then the other wall. And off to the side, was the crowd itself, packed tighter than any “sardine” simile could describe.

Even through the lens of my flipvid, I was terrified of how close the violent drum swings were coming to my face. In case you’ve never seen Iron Lung before, (or any “power violence” set for that matter) it’s like taking a two hour arena rock, metal show, and simmering it down to a lead furied ten minutes, and this was certainly no exception. Both the band and the crowd erupted at the same, in only the way that a band who draws about 100 people crammed in a ten foot by ten foot room can. Arms flailed about, as they were the only things that could be freed to move. As the band churned through tracks from Sexless//No Sex, one of the drum sticks exploded into toothpick shrapnel. The rabid fans kept pace with the ragging band, but almost before it had begun, it was all over. Like a trailer park after a tornado, all that was left were random bits of debris.

There were still two more bands left in the evening, but my friends and I were already having dreams of convenience stores. Was hitching a ride out to Silver Spring to pay a cover to crawl into an over crowded house to see one band play for ten minutes worth it? Absolutely.

A few notes about the video. It was shot entirely in Jensen vision, where you are the drummer. Also, a note about not being able to hear the vocals: I’m not sure if you’ve ever been to a house show, but no one who was actually there could hear them either.


Iron Lung performing in DC from Denman C Anderson on Vimeo.

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