Vice Records Garage Punk Weekend @ The Horseshoe Tavern

Friend and fellow writer for MSB, Missy, needs to be cordially thanked for bringing me to see The Black Lips show last night. A tip of the hat and a flash up the skirt to her for getting a ticket with me in mind before they sold out.
I had heard The Black Lips before and obviously loved them, but as for the other two bands (Demon's Claws and Box Elders) I had absolutely no idea who they were but figured anything with the word "punk" in the title was worth $20... although I think I'm the only person on earth (or at least Toronto) who isn't a fan of much with "Vice" in the title... regardless, it was a Saturday night on Queen and it didn't take much to convince me to go.
We walked in and after racing to the washroom before I pissed my pants (seriously, so close, damn you rum!) we were able to get beer and make our way to the front of the stage just in time to hear the last half of the set by Demon's Claws (OR Hell's Shovel who the merch guy told us had played instead... but I don't know if I believe him, and after listening to both bands sites I'm still not entirely sure because my memory is shit and I wasn't taking pictures... and to be honest I'm too lazy to put any more work into figuring it out right now so I'll just stick with the websites that say Demon's Claws but don't quote me, I'm far from reliable. This is only a blog!)
This is what I remember:
One of the guys was wearing a cape. And looked GOOD. It might be the nerd in me talking, but a cape is far from a deal breaker for me.
The singer, mere minutes from us getting there, starting groaning into the mic instead of singing, and he just kept going, and the band was laughing, and the crowd was laughing, and I was cleaning up the mess on the floor that I was responsible for and no, it wasn't beer, unless by beer you mean bodily beer? ummm, nevermind that.
It was fantastic.
Different, which made it even more spectacular.
It was like hipster punk, and let's just say hipster punk is a lot happier than regular punk.
Next was Box Elders.
I walked into the show not knowing who the fuck they were, and walked out with a $15 album in purse and not a doubt that it was worth spending my grocery money on. I haven't raced to the merch table that fast after hearing a band in a long, long time. They weren't hipster so much as they were this mix of surf pop/rock/punk and with just three members and the drums pushed up to the front of the stage equally in line with the guitarist and his DOUBLE GUITAR, and the bassist and his DOUBLE BASS. Beside the drums was a keyboard which the drummer singlehandedly played WHILE playing the drums WHILE indulging the audience with some killer choreography... something they had apparently gotten ripped on in another review for but in my opinion made their performance stand out so much more and was seriously impressive.
I started making myself dizzy during their set because I kept dancing my eyes back and forth between member, each one was pulling some crazy stunts on stage with their instruments and really getting into the music.
Honestly one of the coolest sets I've ever seen in so many ways.
This show had already turned out to be better than anything I saw during CMW, with the exception of the Silver Dollar night.
And The Black Lips, the only band I had heard of and the band I was there to see, hadn't even played yet!
As soon as they did I knew this was the best show, ever.
I had passed up seeing Protest The Hero the night before, for FREE via me winning tickets, because I was so sick this weekend. I had practically forced myself to get out of bed (and drink haha) and get my ass down to meet Missy because she was selling me a ticket, but I had NO intentions of having such a blast of a time, or reviewing it for that matter. I pictured myself enjoying it obviously, but in a sick and somewhat drunk state of mind near the back. Once there with The Black Lips on stage and the MOST people I've ever seen at the Horseshoe laughing and dancing and singing along with the band, ON STAGE with the band most of the time even, I just got lost in the moment and couldn't for the life of me stay in my sick and tired state of mind. In fact, I am pretty sure I was floating over the crowd in the most serene mindset. Back on track with the hipster punk vibe and all the happy people of varied clothing styles merging together in the least threatening mosh pit I've ever seen. I hadn't left the venue to indulge myself in anything all night and yet I was still floating high, the venue was filled with this happy intensity that was very infectious and I'm pretty sure I was nodding along with this shit eating grin on my face the entire time, completely packed between strangers as Missy dove right into the crowd and towards the stage. I wish I had the money to go back to see them again tonight. That's right, the show is repeating itself tonight at the Horseshoe. THAT's how assome it is/was/will be.
Best. Show. Ever.
Everybody kept making out on stage because the show was so good... or because they were drunk... or slutty... for whatever reason it was all in the orgasmic spirit that was emitted from the orgasmically good music all night.

www.myspace.com/demonsclaws
www.myspace.com/boxelders
www.myspace.com/theblacklips

I'm Sarah. I do what I want.