The buzz that is growing about Savages on this side of the pond is certainly well deserved as I found out last night at Mercury Lounge. The quartet from London is labeled as post-punk, whatever the fuck that means, and the punk is strong in them but they have a wicked range that can whip up a mosh-pit or have your girlfriend/boyfriend emotional all in the same night.
Opening up for Savages was a trio of musicians calling themselves Drum and Drones who threw the crowd a curveball in the form of some insane acid-jazz. Feeding off of percussionist Brian Chase (of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs), a saxophonist and a violinist dropped wicked sounds to create some really “out-there” avant garde music. One dude, from the back of the room yelled out “YOU SUCK” prompting a few laughs and response not too long after from another guy saying: “Fuck that guy I Love you!” Jazz isn’t for everybody I guess!
The air was super charged as the sold-out room inched forward when the ladies of Savages took the stage. They wasted no time in showing why they sold out NINE NYC shows this month with the rocking tune “I Am Here.” It was hard to take your eyes off of lead-singer Jehnny Beth but once you did, you noticed a killer drummer in Fay Milton and her partner in the rhythm section – bassist Ayse Hassan. Rounding out the group is one of the better guitarists I’ve seen in a long time, Gemma Thompson who had a knack of creating an amazing depth to each song and made it look effortless in the process.
Highlights of the night were definitely “Shut Up” and the slower “Adore,” which warned us to adore life as we know it. Stage banter was kept to a minimum as the band came to work and after a solid sixty minute set left the stage to thunderous applause. Despite the house music turned on and the stage crew disassembling the set, the crowd refused to believe it was over calling for an encore that didn’t come.
Savages have two more shows this week but if you don’t already have your tickets, you’re out of luck as they are sold out! I expect the next time that this great group comes back this way they will be on a bigger stage in front of a much larger audience.
Article by: Shayne Hanley