Wednesday 13/Sign/Betty Curse Live @ Academy, Bristol (UK) - 24th September 2006

In the car en-route to the venue tonight I suddenly realised this was the 6th time I'd seen "Wednesday 13" live (including twice with the "Murderdolls"). And If I'm honest the last few times had just kind of washed over me, this I guess was partly due to the lack of cohesion caused by ever-revolving band members. But I also think the initial excitement of seeing "Frankenstein Drag Queens" classic schlock rock being played live in the UK had long subsided into a state of waiting to hear the cult classic "R.A.M.B.O" and then leaving, sort of happy.

So when we actually arrived at the venues nearby car park and my ticket read 18:06, that along with my gig tally was near enough the "mark of the beast" for me to kick-start some much needed pre gig anticipation. After all with 5 recent listens under my belt, the new CD "Fang Bang" was starting to sound like a band reborn (undead of course) full of fresh ideas and an almost 80's vibe going on. Then when I remembered that "Murderdoll", Eric Griffin was along for the fright ride on guitar this time around. And fellow nightmare companions were ex "Rejects/Dope" drummer Racci Shay and ex "Amen" bassist Nate Manor, so on paper at least this looked like a line up that could be very exciting to watch.

In an unexpected segue, it was at this point in the evening my wife recalled a video I had watched on Scuzz a few nights earlier stating at the time of viewing to watch it to the end to find out who it was so that " I would never to have to suffer another 3 minutes by them". Sadly that bands name was Betty Curse, so we stayed in the pub, and I kept my promise.

So the first signs (see what I did there) of live action for us were Icelandic 4 piece Sign. Who were probably best described as Skid Row meets Warrior Soul. Singer "Zolberg" is a star waiting to explode (literally from how much cock neck he was showing in those low slung jeans) not only has he a great set of pipes but he has the type of instant appeal that had the pre-pubescent audience screaming, and most of them were boys!!!!

During "Sign's" 30 odd minute set the strength of epic sound scapes like "When Demons Win" and soon to be single "So Pretty" saw me tearing over to the merch stall to buy the debut album "Thank God For Silence". Watch this space Glitziners, with the right backing these guys just might be massive, get this album or see the band and suffer the sublime lack of silence.

So onto Wednesday 13, who on this tour were certainly pulling no punches, the full size stage show with drum risers, backdrops and trash cans fully complemented the bands much deserved move up from the UK toilet circuit. And hitting the stage with "Grave Robbing USA" my earlier thoughts were confirmed in that the band not only played, but also looked fucking awesome, Drummer Racci Shay spent most of the night pretend combing his hair with his sticks (just like a certain Mr "T Boner" Lee back in the classic TFFL days) but sadly his kit was missing a much-needed cowbell. Eric Griffin on the other hand equipped a mean "Elvira" type mullet, fitted in so well on guitar, that it enabled Wednesday to be become frontman for large parts of the show. Minus his guitar Wednesday could stalk around and engage Godzilla like with his sick disciples of trash and this added to a whole more enticing gig gore zone. Throughout the breakneck speed set delivery we got classics such as R.A.M.B.O and 197666m, as well as "Happy Ever Cadaver" and "Morgue than Words" from "Fang Bang".

After 45 minutes the band left to catch a fairy (or at least that was what it sounded like) to Germany and the surprisingly reasonably full Academy audience spilled out onto the streets at the ungodly hour of 10:15. Which left me, this time at least, leaving a Wednesday 13 show wanting more.

by Johnny H.

If anybody has any photos from the Wednesday 13 gig and would like to see them in this column, drop me a line @ EMAIL

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