COME ON AND PUCKER UP
Local Punk 'n' Rollers at Local Bar Dig Up Crypt's Grave
The sleeve of their brand-new, self-titled debut album reports, "Killing done by Andy, Kari, and Sara." WFMU's Dave the Spazz says the band "can't wait to slay you upside the head." But the Little Killers appeared quite nice at Williamsburg's packed, sweaty, feedback-shot dive the Local last Friday, taking time between songs to breathlessly thank Tim Warren, proprietor of the great and now back-from-the-grave garage imprint Crypt Records, who ended a five-year self-imposed ban on new bands to swing them on board. (The LP is "a swank beastie," Crypt's website boasts.) "Yeah," "rock 'n' roll," and "happy" were literally the only comprehensible lyrics from singer and guitarist Andy all night, as the three-piece tore through a 15-song set.
The Little Killers are two beautifully dark-haired and tattooed girls in their twenties, best friends from New Hampshire never before in any bands, and a lanky, curly-haired Yonkers dude in his forties, long a New York-scene staple in the Ramones-driven Sea Monkeys. ("She should be the singer!" cried a young woman, pointing to gorgeous bassist Sara, who looks something like a cross between Patti Smith and pouty-lipped Gina Gershon; true enough, even her punctuating yelps were riveting.) Accelerated, dirty-guitared two-minute sock-hop blitzes like "Come On Up" and "Pucker Up" punk up Chuck Berry and rockabilly riffs into wicked loud come-ons. At the mermaid-bedecked Local, Andy quickly delivered his mouth-on-microphone mumbles, and the crowd executed a footloose full-body-moshed beer-spray party on all sides of the tiny stage. I was practically eating someone's bouncing bald head. Hillary Chute
GET WET AGAIN
Real Men Have No Qualms About Repeating Themselves
Andrew W.K. is in touch with his masculine side. Real men have long, greasy hair, like the chestnut-tressed Mr. Wilkes-Krier himself as well as his entire backing ensemble (except for the bald bass player with mutton chops, but real men can be skinheads, too). Real men let that hair fly as they headbang to the dinky-ass piano solos they play over their bands' thunderous glam-metal roars. Real men shove microphones down the crotches of their pants when they're not singing and pick their noses right up there onstage. And they don't care that everyone's watching them.
Real men hug every last fan who jumps onstage, and for Andrew W.K. last Tuesday night at Irving Plaza, that was a hell of a lot of people. Above all, real men show they care.
Andrew W.K. cares a lot. "If you ever feel left out or left behind, this song will be your friend," the linebacker-sized shouter announced at the beginning of "Never Let Down," the anthemic (but what AWK song isn't?) first single from his new The Wolf.
(The Wolf sounds exactly like Andrew's debut, I Get Wet, only with a few mid-tempo pounders included amid all the rapid-fire skull-crushers. As if we'd expect anything but AC/DC-like consistency from this man.) He thanked us about 30 times for all partying with him, and ended with a leap into the crowd that led to even more hugs. After the show, he stayed and signed autographs.
Listening to W.K.'s music in the privacy of your own home, it's tempting to pass him off as an art-school ironist, pumping out arena riffs and brain-dead lyrics so as to laugh at idiots who think he's for real. But when the man and his equally sweaty mass followers are right there in front of you, it's impossible not to believe. Because real men are not fakers. Amy Phillips
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