Wednesday, June 18, 2014


I'll be exploring two themes for this write up here: 1) lighting and 2) lycra.

I'm a sucker for a light show, so long as it relies mostly on crazy-ass spasm-inducing disco strobes, primarily. Nothing's worse than a not-very-nimble "now the singer is green" light rig. More like, "who gives enough of a fuck that a green light shone on a singer is somehow part of the budget for this show" which is typically what I end up asking about things like bad rock band lighting in 2014. But, all that to say, JonnyX and the Groadies, (JonnyX is correctly spelled, thanks) used a strobe masterfully, last time I saw them. Their intense blasts of spasmodic hardcore cum black metal just work really nicely with a strobe light that makes your eyes twitch.

Next up, lycra, the synthetic polymer skin-substitute that comes in all manner of shimmery colors and is worn professionally by cyclists and few others non-ironically. Nate Groadies is one of those rare dudes who can (unironically) step into a pair of lycra trousers, or a full body suit (I think) and proceed to rage bass.

Self-propelled Groad-Mobile
If you were around in the summer of 2004, you might have been lucky enough to see JonnyX and the Groadies at Jay's Upstairs with Sasshole, or at the all-ages (then, just) Total Fest matinee at the Boys and Girls Club on South Higgins. It was kind of a special deal, as I remember. They didn't, and really don't, tour per se. Just weren't interested in that part of being in a band. Anyhow, what the Groadies did do was twist off some completely intense and excellent keyboard/drum machine, guitar, bass and screams punk rock music. Think of Ghengis Tron, a little Lightning Bolt, maybe some ... er, Dimmu Borgir or something. Shit was so great. In 2010 they released their first LP of a roughly (then) fifteen year career. It's called "the Upheaval on Titan" and is excellent too. And, just last year, when two great defunct bands like Behead the Prophet No Lord Shall Live and the Need get together for a couple show,  guess who's on the Portland bill? JX:ATG, brah!

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