We rolled into Baltimore in the pouring rain and followed our buddy Jason Carter to the art space/warehouse/practice space where the show was happening, Space Monkey HQ. We were a little confused by the fact that the space didn’t have an address- only a set of geographic coordinates- until we drove into an alley between two buildings to reach it.
Between the rain and the HORRENDOUS TRAFFIC, we were a little fried, so we walked across I-83 for a sandwich and a little breathing room.
By the time we returned, the rain had stopped, and an oppressive humidity all-too-familiar to natives of southeast Texas had set in.
May 16, 2015- Space Monkey HQ (Baltimore) with Auxiliary Mammals and the Lovebug Junkies
We loaded in, but it wasn’t time for the show to start yet, so we killed admiring Space Monkey HQ’s weird art
And making some ourselves while nursing ice-cold National Bohemian
Auxiliary Mammals took the stage shortly after 9:30.
I believe Jason had described them to me as a “psych” band, but to me they sounded like straight-up noise rock, a la Pissed Jeans. Perfect for a sweaty night in an art space!
Their merch consisted entirely of souvenir postcards printed with this handprint, and their Bandcamp address on the back.
Later on, we got to talking to one of their guitarists, Marc Rothe, who works at a union print shop in Baltimore, and who printed these cards using a real letter press. The handprint is a vintage design from a local fortuneteller and came from a stock of art that he inherited when another print shop went out of business a while back. Very cool.
We decided to switch things up a little and close with A Cruel Weight, Thy Wound.
A Ruined Oak
A Cruel Weight, Thy Wound
This was the first time we’ve played it outside Texas. Not something we play at club shows a lot, just because it’s very long (almost 9 minutes). But we figured Space Monkey, being a more casual environment, was a good setting. And we were right- it went over famously. I’m pretty sure I even played everything the right number of times, yay!
By the time we finished, I was sweatier than I think I have ever been after a show, including the notorious July 4 show at Gatsby’s mansion in Denton. The front of my pants was visibly saturated with sweat. Gross.
I had just about finished recovering my humanity when the Lovebug Junkies took the floor with their new & improved two-drummer lineup, featuring Flynn Diguardia and our glorious host, the one, the only Jason Carter.
Up front, Russell, Donny and Chris were making a ton of awesome noise.
The end result was a little like Rick Froberg fronting Girls Against Boys. Super good A+ punk rock. The double drummer lineup was very tight too. Go get their new record!
Our deepest thanks to Russell, Donny, Chris, and everyone else with the Lovebug Junkies, Auxiliary Mammals and Space Monkey HQ for a deeply memorable night. They put a ton of effort into this show and we could not be more grateful.
We crashed with Jason in his new apartment and awoke to ENDLESS FREE COFFEE (pour-over style YEEAAAAAHHH) and basked in the glow of Jason’s cultured masculinity. By which I mean Jamie tried his beard oil. Quoth Sam: “Be his beard ne’er so vile this oil shan’t gentle its condition.”
Since the drive to Philadelphia was theoretically short, we took Jason’s suggestion of a scrumptious taco breakfast up in Hampden, followed by a walk through its bustling strip of hip restaurants and shops, housed in historic townhouses.
Then we got some ice cream at a parlor called, disarmingly, “The Charmery.”
I had the cantaloupe ginger.
At last, en route to Philadelphia, we bid a tearful goodbye to our friend, without whom the city of brotherly love hardly seems to merit the name.
Next up: Truth, justice and GRINDCORE TIL THE COWS COME HOME