SF Weekly (6.24.98)

Hear This

By Robert Arriaga

The Creatures

Siouxsie & the Banshees died a horrible death. Some might argue that the famous goth band is not really dead, but merely existing in a state of suspended animation resulting from the growing pains that produced the dismal 1991 release Superstition.

If that record, full of pop pap, was an indicator of where the band was headed, we should let them rot in pieces. Still, a visit from Siouxsie's respected, more daring side project, the Creatures, is not without its allure.

From 1979's Join Hands through 1986's Tinderbox Siouxsie & the Banshees generated a unique and interesting sound, full of surreal swirling guitars and haunting ice-queen lyrics. In an age when most post-punk bands were jumping over to new wave, Siouxsie managed to maintain her gothic niche while enjoying numerous pop successes. Among the most notable of her few side projects was the Creatures, whom Siouxsie and drummer Budgie created in 1981 to break out of the structured sound of the Banshees. The Creatures sound exactly as they should: a pounding, tribal drumfest accented by Siouxsie's wails. Although most thought the group was merely a one-shot deal, the Creatures produced a second record in 1983 and are expected to release yet another in August. For the most ardent of Siouxsie fans, the Creatures are no substitute for the familiarity -- and desperately more likable catalog -- of the Banshees. Then again, hum the chorus of the Banshees' insipid "Kiss Them for Me," and you'll appreciate that the Creatures show will sound more like the Banshees than the real thing.

The Creatures play Thursday and Friday, June 25 and 26, at 9 p.m. at the Maritime Hall, 450 Harrison (at First Street). John Cale opens. Tickets are $25; call 974-0634.

Contributed by Jerry Burch.

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