Show Review: My Disco at the Comet Tavern in Seattle

My Disco, Young Widows, Helms Alee and Brick Bats at The Comet Tavern, Seattle, Washington
Tuesday June 7th
I’ll start by saying that Melbourne’s My Disco have consistently impressed since I first heard them via my friend Alastair’s guest DJ appearance on a Glasgow radio station back in 2008. For an artsy noise rock fan like myself this was equivalent to a junior entomologist flipping over a giant rock to find all of the treasures scattering about beneath. The band has been ever-changing thus far, each recording representing a distinct phase of a band undergoing constant metamorphosis. My anticipation for seeing them in Seattle was on par with similar opportunities I’d had for catching the likes of Slint, The Jesus Lizard, Shellac, Hot Snakes, etc.
Given the sold-out crowd that was in attendance, this show perhaps would have been better suited for the larger venue (Neumo’s) across the street. There’s much to say, good and bad, of the butt-to-nut intimacy of The Comet. That said, kudos to the fine staff at The Comet for pulling this one off.
The openers, Seattle’s own Brick Bats, were playing some sort of birthday party for a friend of the band. The band’s singer apologized to the rest of the performers for hijacking the show, suggesting that folks “stick around for the rest.” With the singer taking every opportunity to speak at length to the crowd via microphone, the first set seemed a bit long. A bit pretentious perhaps.
Helms Alee, initially presumed to be the headliner, played next. This set didn’t just seem long. This set was most-definitely long. They’re a local favorite and they’re one of the best bands at doing what they do. Technically adept, extremely noisy, wicked riffs, serpent shrieks, etc. I’ve seen them play three times before. Each time was a treat.
At almost midnight My Disco finally hits it. In keeping with the metamorphosis theme I’ll say that, disappointingly so, the band opted to stick primarily with the butterfly stage. The Little Joy stage. As disappointed as I was to not hear any of the Cancer jams I can still say without equivocation that this was one of the most hypnotic shows I’ve ever been to. The pace was glacial. The sound was absolutely perfect. The venue’s technical difficulties (many) likely cut this one a bit short. The moment where Ben and Liam temporarily disengaged was as solid an indicator of the band’s frustration as one could expect. Sorry guys.
I regret to report that I missed the finale. Young Widows managed to take their sweet-ass time setting up. Nearly 50 min! I was bummed as these guys are another one of my faves. With a late night drive back to Olympia staring me right in the eye I opted to grab a polish and hit the road. Maybe next time, Young Widows. Maybe next time.
As for My Disco, these guys are for real. Time to recognize.