Hawnay Troof / Get Shakes / Ratbones
Chicks Dig Jerks 7th Birthday Party
Chicks Dig Jerks are tonight celebrating seven years of sexy gig promotion which has seen them host the likes of Klaxons, The Gossip, Metronomy, The Mae Shi, Chromeo and a gazillion other fresh and fruity acts.
Those, like us at Blue Whale, who miss their acerbic fanzine that sporadically used to tickle and titillate Brum gig goers, can be appeased by the fact that they have now ventured into the world of radio. Chicks Dig Jerks’ thoroughly informed pilot for Rhubarb Radio was so popular on first airing, that it crashed the internet server it was being hosted on. Here’s hoping that Rhubarb sort their pipes out and commission the Jerks to produce a regular show. (Listen to it here, it’s ace)
Tonight however is all about the party and it’s up to the unapologetically stoopid Ratbones to fire up The Sunflower Lounge with their abrasive punk dirge. We pretty much know what we’re in for as they amble on stage exhibiting more tattoos than clothes and arse around waiting for drummer Matt Seabright to arrive. He then proceeds to undress in what seems like a frickin’ age of dead air broken by chants of “Taff! Taff! Taff! Taff!” in an attempt to hurry the tardy percussionist.
When finally ready, Ratbones launch into their barre chords that under pin lyrics that would make Roger Mellie squirm – ‘Barry Log Taking a Shit’ and ‘Cock Warrior,’ a song apparently about a transexual from Solihull – being cases in example. They’re not likely to stir arousal in ardent fans of say, anything more progressive than Sham 69 but neither is that their intention or something to their detriment.
Next, the wriggly funk of Get Shakes has everybody’s shoulders flexing with irresistible 808 handclaps and tunnelling old school Korg synth bass lines. Elements of Tangerine Dream are contorted and repackaged with Orbital and MSTRKRFT-esque disco to equal an impelling electronica with occasional lush accents of guitar licks. The set starts out as an understated groove but terminates as a sweaty sonic rush. If justice prevails we should see warehouses and festival fields in 2010 rammed with people jumping their tushes off to the slickness of Get Shakes.
Slamming lyrics down like Sir Mixalot being groped by Har Mar Superstar is Hawnay Troof who has the energy of an hyperactive five year-old after a barrel of Haribo and the intensity of a cocaine addled Marine. Dressed in some kind of rave-monk get up and violently leaping round the room, he isn’t letting anyone get away with not clapping, screaming or getting down low to the floor at his command.
This break-neck mix of old-skool hip-hop with viscously paced electro is criminally over in the time it took Ratbones to play their first chord from the moment they went on stage. The crowd are wet for more despite being violated for twenty minutes by a crazed Californian on a fashion jihad. Although on reflection Blue Whale is not sure it would be wise to attempt to stomach much more fun of this calibre for the sake of everyone’s equilibrium.
Happy Birthday CDJ x