The Blood Brothers @ Showbox at the Market, 8/22/14
Show Review by Marz
The Blood Brothers are back from the dead thanks to a much-anticipated show at the Showbox on August 22nd. For me, I couldn’t help but think back to how my lone wolf tendencies lured me to Seattle in the late ’90s in search of new things to get into. Going to see live music was a way to be social, but not really have it be too forced. I nurtured my youth by hitting up dance parties, house shows, dive bars or DIY places. Adventures led me to kick around at spots like the Velvet Elvis, the Breakroom, I-Spy, Sit n Spin, Old Firehouse, Ground Zero, the Graceland, the Paradox or the RCKCNDY. My memory is foggy, but I am pretty sure I first saw the Blood Brothers with Botch at the Velvet Elvis. I immediately had a major crush on their outfits that included some army navy surplus gear like pea coats, or Converse kicks, ’70s cap sleeve cropped tees, and perfectly swoopy mod hairdos. Their sound felt shockingly loud, but also like they were letting out a heavy weight of emotions to pacify moody listeners like myself. The lyrics were excruciatingly deep, emotionally direct, but filled with historical references and parables. They were technically precise, but extremely mind shattering. I guess I presumed it was bit of art rock and hardcore, but not anything I had heard before. Anyways, I was excited to see they reunified.
Openers Naomi Punk got the eve off with some reprising drone driven meditative sounds that were subtle, but sedated. Their tones were matched with minimal harmonies and sincerely real lyrical inflections. It was a sweet selection to get these guys to induce the show.
Then there was a short intermission as more people piled in for the sold out gig. I noticed old flames and friends reuniting while rap, hip hop, R & B from the late ’90s/early ’00s played in the background. Thinking back, I liked how the Blood Brothers would always rock the family affair vibes with most of the bandmembers’ lovers and BFFs joining them on stage for dancing and sing-a-longs during their sets. This time it was really cool to see frontman Blilie’s wife Zoe running the stage set up as fans squeezed to the front before their live action. Then they all came out radiating a bounty of energies that transmutated the room. The whole dynamic was a feeling of chaotic chemistry.
I had my shitty iPhone ready in hand and had sandwiched myself between two attendees and the front stage to ensure that I remain in upright position to get some snaps of the show. The Blood Brothers were doing power stance rocker moves and high kick jumps that I never had the pleasure to witness before. There were lots other bodies from the audience floating through on the crowd, swaying side to side, or jumping to the stage. Also, lots of new and old school faces were screaming to lyrics. Later on Blilie shared with the crowd how much he appreciated everyone there, and aside from his friends and family, he loved his bandmates with whom he has spent most of his life. From witnessing past to present I do believe that the Blood Brothers tremendously influenced the Seattle music scene to its present existence. If not for the Blood Brothers and countless other musicians it would just not be what it is today. So I am thankful.
It’s been almost four weeks since the show, and people are still hyperly chatting about their “back-in-the-day” memories and the show. Last weekend, I was at a Display show when I met Hollie Wilcox, a local photographer who has a healthy archive of band photos. I thought it would be fun if she would like to share with everyone some of her pics. So here are the never-before-seen photos of the Blood Brothers show in 2003 at the HUB courtesy of Hollie Wilcox. As you can see their shows were just as vibrant then as they are in present day.
all photos from 8/22/14 BB’s show by Marz
all photos, ticket stub and poster clipping from 11/14/03 BB’s show courtesy of Hollie Wilcox