Written by Abel Carmona
Jun 16, 2007 at 08:00 PM
ImageAside from a Gwar show (which we will be seeing next month) tonight was one of the weirdest concerts I have seen in a long, long time. At least with a Gwar show you know what you’re getting, but with tonight show everyone’s favorite underfed canine Skinny Puppy came to town and brought some weird but great acts with them. I never got the names of the opening bands but I sit down boys and girls and I will tell you all about what when down over at the Warehouse tonight.

I got in the door just as the first act had begun, and I kick myself for not getting any pictures of it. But I wasn’t sure how many songs had been played so I just waited and watched. I will say this I should have just taken the pictures because it would have been so much easier than what I fixing to explain to you. What I saw onstage was a guy dressed up in a super hero outfit and I’m talking tights, under roo’s, and a cape yes a cape, and he was the most normal looking one on stage.

The music if you can call it music was a turntable and a voice changer. The guy would hit a button start a track then hit the voice changer and proceed to sing death metal vocals in an electronic voice. Still this is the normal part, what happened next was a guy dressed in what looked like a big foot outfit came stomping out on stage and began fighting with the super hero with light up toy laser guns. As all this was going on a new character came out. Another guy comes out dressed in a full black robe, wearing a cow skull with deer antlers and blonde dreadlocks on it.

So the super hero and bigfoot are still shooting each other with toy guns and now also fighting with what looked like light sabers. The dreadlocked cow dude was walking around on stage doing scary poses and reaching out towards fans. This went on for a few tracks but then as the next track played, it was a poppy dance type song. The three of them proceed to get down and start disco dancing with each other. Towards the end of the set (if you can call it a set) the cow skulled dude came around the stage and walked out towards the crowd. What was awesome about this was one of the security guards didn’t see him coming around so when he turned around the guy was right in his face and gave him one hell of a scare.

So after this act the stage was cleared and the next group came out. So I figured after a super hero, Bigfoot, cow skull dude showdown what else were we going to see tonight, and the answer…rats. That’s right rats; these three guys come out dressed in bloody lab coats and rat mask (I have found myself coming to call them the lab rats).  So you have one rat on a bass guitar, one on drums and the other on a synthesizer. The music started off very slow but then turned in to hard pounding metal complete with un-understandable lyrics.

I never could hear a word the rat was saying but they were fun to watch. All the while they were playing I couldn’t help but keep thinking of the cartoon ‘Pinky and the Brain’. All I could hear in my head was one rat asking the other “So what are we going to do tonight” as the other rat would reply “The same thing we do every night, try to take over the world with our bad music”. Anyway the rats made for some great pictures so go check them out and you’ll begin to get an idea of what tonight was like.

So after all that I was wondering what Skinny Puppy could possibly do to top the first two acts of tonight. I can easily say the opening acts were blown out of the water by the show Skinny Puppy put on tonight. As the set began a large white screen was lit up on stage playing a video background, as Keyboardist cEvin Key and drummer Justin Bennett walked on stage the lights lower onstage and lights from behind another screen were turned on and the shadow of Ogre could be seen.

Ogre did the first three songs from behind the screen each one wearing different head pieces and props giving a really awesome look to his shadows. During the first Song he looked as if he was sticking the mic stand through his body. On the next he looked like he had on a robe and was holding a huge set of rosary beads. Then on the song right before Ogre came out he was pushing up against the screen making it look as if he were trying to escape from inside a body. All of that was wicked looking, but then Ogre came out from behind the screen and I was blown away by what I saw.

Ogre looked like a piece of bio-mechanical machinery with hoses and wires hanging off of his body. He was covered in fake blood all around his mouth and chest and also had kind of a Marilyn Manson look going because his face was painted all white with black eyes; Ogre also wore an eye patch that bared the Skinny Puppy logo. Now if all that was going on visually didn’t work your mind then the music surely did. Skinny Puppy’s set included stuff from albums across their entire span of work. A few new songs were also played, which was something I was looking forward to since I hadn’t heard any new Skinny Puppy in so long.

It has been Three years since the release of a new album for Skinny Puppy, but they come to us with their latest offering Mythmaker. Mythmaker truly shows how influencal Skinny Puppy has been over the years, giving us those hard pounding techno industrial sounds that have been lost with the current rise of pop-punk and the indie screen. One of the singles off of Mythmaker ‘Pedafly’ has become a new favorite of mine and was awesome to watch performed live.

I talk about how much of an influence Skinny Puppy has been in their time but the list of projects that Ogre and Key and put their touch on is endless. Skinny Puppy started as a side project for both Ogre and Key that quickly became a full time gig. From 1984 till the mid-90’s Skinny Puppy was one of the strongest techno industrial bands around, making the way for other acts such as Nine Inch Nails, KMFDM and Ministry. During the late 90’s techno and new wave gave way to the sounds of grunge and nu-metal, But now with some of today’s bands using more and more techno beats in their music it seems the genre is on the rise once more.

As of now I think Skinny Puppy’s tour is going to be taking them to Europe for a few months but I wouldn’t be surprised to see them come around again sometime this fall or winter to keep pushing the new album. If you were here tonight then you know exactly what I mean when I say this was one of the most bizarre but very entertaining nights I have had in a long time.  When you combined the music and the visual effects of tonight’s show the best way to explain it would be, something that infects your mind and takes it places you never thought possible.