Bass Drum of Death at Hawthorne Theater 9.20.13

Friday night was one of those nights where you’re not sure to be thankful for or confused about the small crowd that decided to show up. The evening started with Summer Cannibals, a local band fronted by an angsty female and backed by a very youthful-looking group. They seemed to be extremely stoked while playing, but something was off that night. Most of the sounds mushed together into an unidentifiable noise. Even the way they moved Friday night felt forced and uncomfortable. The crowd seemed to be into it, but I’ve definitely witnessed better and more naturally-performed sets from them.

Finally, Bass Drum of Death set up and seized the stage. I have never heard so much sound come from three people in my life. They started with a few from their new self-titled album, including “I Wanna Be Forgotten”. The drummer was all over the place but at the same time held a sense of organization. He was completely entrancing and hard to tear your eyes away from, though there was hardly any bass drumming (in addition to a figurative death). The mastermind of the band,John Barrett, sang mercilessly through their too short set.  The bass player, Len Clark, kept a perfect harmony and rhythm. This beckoned the crowd to move, but most didn’t. They also recollected and played a few songs from their first album, such as GB City and Velvet Itch. Bass Drum of Death are one of those gems lost in a collected mess of thrash and rock. If you missed the show, you had better say sorry to yourself, your Friday night, and most importantly, Bass Drum of Death.


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