Tuesday, November 17th 2015
The Venture Compound, St. Petersburg FL
Originally published at Suburban Apologist
“I like food, food tastes good!” - Descendents, ‘I Like Food’ (1981)
Poultry, added to the bill last minute, are playing in a lesser used and small corner of the venue. Without even enough room to turn around, spread their wings or see sunlight at any point during their set, it shouldn’t be surprising that new director Emmy Lou is trying to get the place rebranded The Vegetarian Compound. These seem to be paltry problems for Poultry however, with a floating post-rock co-op (or coop) of soft guitar and dominating drums, that are relaxing despite their volume. It seems only right to mention that the chickens of the sea, the other fake meat, the fish, make an appearance on singer Sam Wolter’s shirt.
The lone non-culinary act tonight are SAHE (sage, maybe?) Now that Eagles of Death Metal are likely to leave a bad taste for a while, you’ll need to get your hard rock, punk ‘n’ roll blues fix elsewhere, and SAHE are ready to step in. Vocalist and guitarist Nick Ehas not only steps but dances, struts and bounds around the floor space, no doubt making any hens in the audience envious. The band fill silence as effectively as he fills the space, providing a non-stop melody of entertainment. At one point when there threatens to be a moment of calm Nick emphatically implores his brother Pat on the bass to get into the next song “Faster faster faster!” Often a good approach in music, normally bad in eating.
CHEW from Atlanta are visiting St. Pete for the first time. Their name might imply some sort of necessary effort on the consumer's part, and that’s arguably fair; the genre-buffet that is served up here simmers a lot of different ingredients. The result thankfully is filling, with no particular elements drowning out the rest and impressive nuanced technique. Brett Reagan utilises synths effectively without just throwing them over the top of the conventional rock band tools. Bassist Brandon Pittman’s dancing adds something in the often-stiff world of instrumental performance. The only voice outlet is an awkwardly angled mic for drummer Snare-uh Wilson, but there’s tempo changes and other interesting stuff going on, a pleasant soundscape against the Venture murals. CHEW’s last song is a snaky little groove à la Stereolab, a comparison made not just because of the spoken French sample. Bon appétit.
The fourth round of any eating adventure should give pause for thought. Maybe your other courses weren’t satisfying enough, or you’re being coaxed by some crappy taco franchise against your better judgement. None of that is the case here though, with St. Pete emo darlings Snacking rounding out the meal like an after-dinner mint. Danny Piechocki is the sandwich bread for the night (he’s the drummer in Poultry). I’m just formulating the thought that Snacking are in the Texas Is The Reason echelon of emo quality, when they announce they’re playing a song “about a house in Texas” (‘It’s a Spring Thing’). If you value good music and viable food supplies, say Snacking not fracking in 2016.
You should support The Venture Compound art space going into the new year also! Attend the events, and consider a membership. The new Venture TV can give you some compelling reasons why. Feed them funds, and they will feed your soul. I am now going to make a pizza.