Wednesday, August 27, 2014

19 Aug 14 - GRENDEL

Hey, blogspot readers, SouthSide’s busy “work” schedule continues rockin’ along at West Loop’s favorite dive bar for live hardcore thrash/metal/industrial music performances. On this particular night, fans came fashionably dressed in their best industrial/metal gear while attending the GRENDEL/Ludovico Technique tour show which featured local industrial/video game band – The Gothsicles opening the lineup. Plus fans were also treated to two special burlesque acts by Shot Glass Sally and Adela as well as DJ sets in between acts. Though having to wait patiently for the show to began (due to technical problems), fans didn’t seem to mind as the excitement of seeing GRENDEL again after a long absence from Chicago wafted throughout the venue, blogspot readers.

The Gothsicles ( easily capitalized on that feeling with fun and more during their energetically intense industrial opening set. This reviewer highly recommends checking out this group that pokes wit and fun with a few things the guys love about the gamer/fandom scene like “Aquaman”. “Drop Dead Squid Face” (dressed in their squidly costumes while hopping all over the stage) and fan favorite closing song “Konami Code” (everyone loves singing the dance steps – “...up up down down left right left right B A Select Start...” To heighten your The Gothsicles experience even more, blogspot readers, there are images running in sync with each song performed. For example, when “BALLS” is performed, watching out for the wacky squirrel scenes with ...well, you guess right, large balls. Or “This Club Is Closed” will give you direct hints that you should get the heck out and go home because as the song simply states – the club is closed. Besides giving SouthSide an awesome shout-out during their opening set, The Gothsicles got the fans off to wild start and pumped for upcoming performances by Ludovico Technique and GRENDEL!

Absolutely do not try this at home, blogspot readers! Why? Because what SouthSide is about to describe next deals involves very sharp shards of glass during this brief spot of entertainment. After a quick set up of laying down the tarp on stage, Shot Glass Sally demonstrated to eager fans why she’s the Burlesque Queen of the Shards. Again, this reviewer cautions readers not to attempt any of her moves unless professionally trained. Amidst her sultry gymnast moves, Sally rolled, washed, arched as well as laid on the colorful sharp pieces without any whimpering cries of pain from being pierced and/or poked by the glass. She even did a belly flop! Yes, blogspot readers, you heard correctly. This burlesque artist not only did once but twice onto the glass while fans cheered with amazement in the end. The always fashionably debonair Joseph Vourteque (of Rouge! Chicago’s Premiere Electro Swing) assisted in the clean-up after Sally concluded her performance.

Before Ludovico Technique (the name taken from the aversion therapy treatment in the novel A Clockwork Orange) took over the stage to perform a dark yet dramatically intense industrial rock performance, SouthSide had the extreme chance to interview the band’s from man Ben in the Cobra Lounge upstairs dressing room. Citing the band’s music as  the “...expression of a twisted soul...”, Ben also went on to state what attracts fans to return to a Ludovico performance that it’s the “...general expression through a way [that’s] personable...” and it’s also feeling the vibe and energy. That was certainly true, blogspot readers. Throughout the band’s performance, one literally feel the energy and vibe not only from the music but from being surrounded by the foggy laser lighting fx atmosphere. Fans were instantly caught up by the raw mixture of synths and percussion music and Ben’s ghostly stage persona and timed movements. As the tortured soul (at times), this front man’s wonderfully connected with his  adoring fans lyrically portraying the emotions prominently featured in his songwriting. blogspot readers. Songs like “Heal My Scars”, “Living Filth” and new single “Potential” Ben told this reviewer, “...they encompass what I write and feel...” These particular songs and others are meant for you to feel the same emotional pain and/or the aggression just like he did when composing them. Both sets of emotions literally drove fans wild especially those adoringly parked in front of the stage head-banging to every pulsating beat which left  them hungry for more by Ludovico Technique. And what the fans wanted, they got, blogspot readers, despite wanting more still. One Ludovico encore is never enough for this Chicago crowd. In closing, Ben wanted his fans to know the following “...thank you so much...” for their support and for expressing themselves adding “’s very meaningful to me to know I’ve touched people in that manner...” SouthSide highly recommends checking out Ludovico Technique at the band’s next performance but in the meantime, listen to  songs “Devotion” and “This Life” at

Before GRENDEL thrilled the already hyped up crowd with their headlining performance, there was another special burlesque performance by the lovely Adela. This artist enticed the cheering crowd with a few of her sultry moves that included part dance and acrobatics on a stool, blogspot readers. Then fans generously donated a few dollars when a bucket was passed around the venue to help pay for her medical bills after the performance.

The last time SouthSide saw this band, it nearly ended in with a riot occurring both inside and outside the venue (not Cobra Lounge), blogspot readers, because the manager prematurely stopped the show after three songs. Needless to say this reviewer and fans really knew why he would cut short GRENDEL’s performance. Even JD remembers still remembers that particular night. So what kind of night did GRENDEL have in store for Chicago fans tonight? He replied “...energetic, intense, interactive, and aggressive...” with backing vocalist Mel adding the last word “...dirty...” GRENDEL’s front man continued by explaining how the band gets the crowd interactively involved with them  “...getting them really engaged with us ...I don’t ignore anyone and will switch the negative into [something] positive...” like for instance a heckler in the audience. This reviewer couldn’t believe they sometimes get a heckler disrupting their performances, blogspot readers, but GRENDEL does. Not tonight hecklers at Cobra Lounge. Just wildly excited fans happy to see the band performing in Chicago again. What a show it was! Fans with fists pumped in the air ...some moshing in pockets around the room ...others dancing and singing along to songs like “One Eight Zero”, “Dirty” and “Hate This”. GRENDEL had the entire Cobra Lounge vibin’ under the intensity of the hardcore industrial sound. As the interview came to a close, blogspot readers, JD wanted the fans to know his thanks “...for having us back in the US  [and] for your support...” He also wanted everyone to know that it has been “ amazing tour...” having traveled between the east and west coast “ [the] changing landscape meeting our fans in person...” SouthSide highly recommends rockin’ your ears to GRENDEL at their next show but in the meantime check out songs “Harsh Generation” and “New Flesh” by visiting

Until next time, support your local scene,

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