The Electric Six – Live in Seattle

Photo by Pieter Van Hattem

Seattle, WA
April 29, 2007

“This show doesn’t count!” said Dick Valentine. “We’re in-between albums right now, so this one’s unofficial.”

I leaned against the railing of the balcony at Neumo’s cheering with every bit of Tuesday night enthusiasm I could muster as the band took stage. The six of them each buzzed with high voltage electricity as promised. They clicked on their amps and checked their various levels as Dick pushed his mic stand to the side.

“I know it’s Tuesday,” he squinted around at the crowd, smiling cynically over the heads of the screaming girls in the front. “I know because the venue wants us play a short set so they can get out of here, but we’re not going to.”

The sound of amps beginning to buzz suddenly filled the room and silenced the whisperers.

“We’re going to play an extra long show. Since you all came out on a Tuesday, we’re going to play a long one.” The crowd roared and howled at the stage like a pit of wolves. Feedback took over everything and the Electric Six began their set.

Here’s the deal, people. This band is amazing. Every time I’ve seen them play, I’ve brought at least one person who hasn’t heard them before. And every time, the Electric Six blows their mind—and every time, their perception of what really, really rocks is altered forever.

They call themselves a party band, stating goals of getting laid and getting fucked up—but anyone who owns this band’s albums know that this is only half the story. Sure, a big, sexy chunk of what the Electric Six are about is partying hard and glorifying guilt-free, non-monogamous sex, (which I would like to wholly endorse).

But they admittedly have fallen into the rock trap of the political platform. And with the current political state of our country, who can blame them? But don’t worry; they managed to exploit their own views by turning a brief political rant about Bush into a pick-up line for every woman in the room.

“What this world needs is baby Bushes. Ladies, it’s your patriotic duty to do whatever you can to help this cause. Carry Bush’s baby.” Dick smiled like a school boy who’d gotten away with something. “And for the purpose of convenience, we’ll all be Bush’s tonight.”

The women in the audience cheered as the men stared blankly at the stage, wondering if that had worked before.

The band did play a good sized set—each song holding its own against the others. They had great energy and seemed to truly enjoy what they do, which to me, is one of the more important elements in a great live act. They came back out for a couple of encores after a long period of chanting from the mass of people refusing to leave without hearing their favorite songs.

As I said, I’ve seen the Electric Six a few times now, and my only complaint is that I can’t differentiate between all of the shows. Their performances are very similar in several ways. The consistent level of energy is a good thing, but when your dance moves are the same during certain songs at every show; it starts to come across as a bit uninspired. It’s kind of like noticing that your girlfriend has been saying the same thing, at the same time every time you have sex. Faking the finish a bit fellas?

Commonly asked questions?

Q: How many push ups and sit ups did Dick do during the set?
A: I can’t be sure but, I think 20 of each.

Q: Did underwear get thrown onto the stage?
A: Yes. Yes it did. Pink bra.

Q: Did anyone die from being rocked so hard their head combusted like the dude in scanners?
A: Yes. Five people’s heads exploded. Two guys and three girls, I believe. One of those girls had her shirt pulled up when the combustion took place.

Q: Did they play Gay Bar?
A: Shut up, shut up, shut up… yes, they played it, shut up.

Q. Did anyone pull an Electric Six band member into the bathroom right after they played?
A. Not this time, but I’d like to give a shout out to the little “Band Aid” that did pull their guitarist into the bathroom when they played last year. Um… ehem, good job?

Don’t miss this the Electric Six the next time they play. They’re high energy, low class and everything else a rock and roll fan could want in a band.

-Kenny Ball

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