To kick off my “I saw too many concerts these past few weeks” series for the next few days, I wanted to play catch up on a show I actually saw at the end of September, but haven’t had a chance to blog about quite yet. The main draw for me was the band OhGr, a side project for Skinny Puppy front-man Nivek Ogre featuring a lot of the same touring band members of that band. I remember getting into OhGr way back in 2001 when I first started working for a now defunct big box music/book/video chain called Hastings
I was wandering around the music department after work and saw a new CD with a crazy looking cover for a band that promised to be “from the same mind that brought you Skinny Puppy”. I bought the CD sight unseen and immediately fell in love with it. it’s weird juxtaposition of industrial and pop music was something you never hear normally, and since I was coming down from my “Nu-Metal Phase” and getting into much heavier metal and strange music like this, I very findly remember this time period as the time when my real musical taste “clicked” after I drifted from what Mtv told me to like (yeah the sort of played music then).
I’ve missed seeing both OhGr and Skinny Puppy a few times and did NOT want to miss this show since a new album just rolled out and I had some friends going. I never went ahead and did any research on the other bands, and was VERY pleasantly surprised.
Up first was a solo trip hop / industrial act called Omniflux with is the stage name of Mahsa Zargaran a prominent member of the band Puscifer and a ton more. I mentioned I had no idea what the other bands were and was really surprised to see her both her and Paul barker at the show, and instantly felt dumb for not realizing what either band was before I walked in.
Omniflux’s music was pretty awesome minimalist trip-hop with her on vocals and a sampling machine of some degree. It was a short set and I belive she basically played all or at least most of her new album Aquarelle, but I am not 100% certain since I had not heard the music prior to the show.
I wish I had an opportunity to take a picture with Omniflux as she was selling her merch and talking to everyone that wanted to stop and say hi. By the time I decided to roll over there and buy my vinyls she needed to get ready for being on stage and I didn’t want to keep her. She seemed awesome though.
Lead Into Gold
PAUL EFFIN BARKER! I saw the guy when I came in and was immediately like “oh crap!” – I mean not only is he like 6 foot 6 or something, but there was the guy that basically made Ministry awesome back in the day! I can sadly admit that I have been ignorant to much of his solo output post-Ministry aside from Puscifer, a fact that I need to rectify soon. and considering that I’m now in possesion of both his new album and Omniflux, I have some listening to do (both autographed vinyls BTW).
Lead Into Gold was Paul on vocals and bass guitar for a lot of his set with a back tack, until Omniflux joined him and played some additional guitars for the second half of the show. If you want to know what his sound is, it’s basically Ministry during the 90’s albeit a bit more washed out and trippy.
Needless to say, great show!!
Now it was time for the main event – OhGr. Hot off the heels of the recent release of the band’s newest album TrickS, I was excited to hear some of the new material, as well as some of the classic tracks that got me into the band in the first place. The band did not disappoint all, playing a large portion of the new material as well as pretty much any big hit from previous albums. Of course the biggest hits were some of the standout tracks from Welt.
Donning a grotesque mutated rabbit/sheep mask as far as I could tell, Nivek Ogre definitely has the stage presence down that you’d expect from a guy that’s been making awesome industrial jams for the last 30 years. A few highlights included a politically charged segment featuring Mr. Ogre donning a Donald Trump mask while doing some basic sleight of hand card magic while performing and the encore which featured the band in a bit more relaxed state bantering about the reappearance of a bass guitar that many of the band members apparently hated that had been recently fixed.
All-in all this show was well worth every dime I spent to attend, which gladly wasn’t a whole lot considering most shows at this venue end up being around 25-30 dollars at the most. For the level of access to the artists (granted I did not throw money down for VIP which would have been even more awesome) and the somewhat intimate nature of the performances, I wish a lot of bands did stops in similar ways. If you’re a fan of industrial and any iteration of these bands come through, do yourself a favor and go see them – hell I bet Skinny Puppy will have a new tour soon, might be time to watch venue sites!