Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Recording: Darlene Shrugg

Artist: Darlene Shrugg

Songs: Some Weird Sin [Iggy Pop cover] + National Security*

Recorded at Mercury Social Club, July 17, 2015.

Darlene Shrugg - Some Weird Sin

Darlene Shrugg - National Security

Mercury Social Club, a new venture from the former proprietors of Saving Gigi has the potential to be another asset in the emerging cultural district on Geary Av. if it can be rescued from what sounds like an ongoing bureaucratic quagmire. In the meantime, it's being used as an occasional special event space, and in its current semi-refinished state, it feels something like hanging around in a reclaimed rec hall. A fairly wide space, there's a likeable amount of elbow room with a rough-hewn make-do charm. The sound's a little rough still at this point, and the room got hot like a sauna as the crowd built up, but I'm hoping there'll be a chance for this to become a regularly-functioning space.

Fresh out of the recording studio cutting some tracks with Ben Cook, Darlene Shrugg were already preparing for their appearance at next year's Polaris gala. Rocking a set of heavy glam gems (single "Freedom Comes In A Plastic Card" was even aired twice to start and end the set) with swaggering confidence, this many-headed beast was working with focused determination. Besides the Iggy Pop title essayed here by Max "Slim Twig" Turnbull and Meg "U.S. Girls" Remy, the latter song comes with lead vox from Ice Cream's Amanda Crist. The sound on this recording's a little ragged, given the venue's limitations, and Carlyn Bezic breaks a guitar string during the Iggy tune, but driven on by Simone T-B's drums, these feel pretty satisfactory.

* This title is an educated guess and subject to confirmation.

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