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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Quintron & Miss Pussycat Bring Genre-Defying Noise to Elbo Room

Posted By on Tue, May 26, 2015 at 3:31 PM

Quintron & Miss Pussycat
Tony Molina
May 23, 2015
Elbo Room

click image DALLIS WILLARD
  • Dallis Willard
NOLA’s Quintron, an inventor and musician, delivers his sermon of sound to the capacity crowd at the Elbo Room. Caught up in the fervor, my eyes rolled up in the back of my head. Specific notes and tones emanate from his decorated organ (made to look like a 1970s car grill), while his patented Drum Buddy instrument tells my body to bounce — so I do.

The entire room was on the same wavelength; spilling sweat, allowing Q —  the conductor —  to stir up maximum kinetic energy among the audience like a puppeteer with his marionettes. An array of oscillating gadgets chaotically whirled and whistled, but somehow remained under his skillful control. He used every limb; working the keys with his hands, manipulating the light that emits from one of his creations ever-so-intricately. His leg extended in a yoga-esque pose (but much less graceful looking), stomping a pedal on cue. And when Q wasn't busy doing all that, the same leg was one-man banding it, keeping beat with a high-hat symbol placed to his left. The floor served as his spittoon.

It's fair to say those who had not seen this act before were audibly bemused.
click image DALLIS WILLARD
  • Dallis Willard
Miss Pussycat, armed with cozy-covered maracas — a thematic extension of her very DIY-looking late '50s, early '60s colorfully domestic ensemble was a puppeteer in the literal sense. She preceded the swampy classics from 2003’s Are You Ready For An Organ Solo? and the more recent Too Thirsty 4 Love with a production of her own, set in “Goblin Land.” You’d think the housing-crisis themed puppet show, played out in an inflatable stage that morphed into a castle, was written specifically for San Francisco. When a puppet says that they’re looking for a “loft or a studio,” the audience laughed along, at least in part at themselves.

One of the opening acts — Nots, a harrowing Memphis four-piece intense enough to blow its bass amp (which it did, cutting the group's set slightly short), had the audience locked under its unrelenting spell from the get go. Even during its sound check, it looked cool screaming, “Check! [Chick!], Check!” into the microphones. The band’s separate components act symbiotically with one another; combining to form a whole creature in itself (and a hairy beast at that). The drummer acts like a metronome on steroids, cuing to the synth player on Korg. Meanwhile, the bassist and frontwoman (being the mobile half of the band) whipped up a frenzy of shrieking punk/post-punk mayhem. I’d seen them play last year’s Gonerfest in the bands hometown and had high expectations. I was glad to see them deliver.

Critics Notebook:

• There seems to be a hyper-consciousness to provide “BART-friendly” shows that wrap up early these days, but this wasn't one of them. It was a welcome throwback to typical Saturday night revelry and ended at the sane hour of 1 a.m.

• Honorable mention to a robust merch area with plenty of T-shirts, vinyl, buttons, and my personal favorite — a colorful Drum Buddy iron-on patch.

• First!, a guitar, drum, and bass three-piece featuring Q&P, opened the show with enjoyable, almost spoken-word lyrics, like: “My name is Jesus Christ. I’m an alcoholic.” Or the equally delectable offender, “I hate your fuckin’ dog.” Meanwhile, a dancing animatronic striped-orange cat, named Toby, gyrated to the music atop an amplifier.

• I finally got to see Tony Molina for the first time. When he’s in the zone, he’s got Van Halen guitar-solo mouth going for him, but at the same time he looks like he wants to bust out Chuck Berry’s duck walk. I dig his twin Gibson SG attack.
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Andre Torrez


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