Tuesday, August 4, 1998
by Roddy Alan Fletcher
This was my first ever Creatures' show, so Siouxsie and Budgie could've just walked out, sat on the stage, and twiddled their thumbs, and I would've been impressed. However, much more was in store. And it far exceeded my wildest expectations.
First, a little about the club. Nice place. Semi-posh, but nothing too imposing. I felt quite comfortable there, and the intimacy of the place made for a great atmosphere. No barricades here--a nice, small stage that made for quite an up close and personal mood. The security force outside seemed a bit heavy-handed, but that didn't translate inside.
The audience was a nice mix--a few goths, the older die-hard set, hordes of gay men (of course), some drag queens and musclemen, and a fratboy here and there. All were quite receptive to Cale, Siouxsie, and Budgie. It was nice to be in a group that didn't suck. The Banshees' shows I had attended in the past consisted of audiences of zombies.
Cale was well received, and it didn't take me too long to become comfortable with his material. I must admit that I was quite ignorant of his work. The intensity was just right, building into a frenzy when Siouxsie slinked out in an incredible PVC number for the ending refrains of "Hedda Gabbler." I don't like surprises, and my site and SATB-L had afforded me the luxury of knowing the standard setlist in advance.
The new material sounds better live than anything they've done before. "Disconnected" made for an excellent start, but the anger/revenge in "Take Mine" came across expertly. And the barbs from Siouxsie about lame-ass record company executives didn't hurt. Next came three of my favorites, a wicked "Tattoo," followed by my favorite pre-1998 Creatures' songs, "Pluto Drive" and "Miss the Girl." Both had fresh touches, and I don't think I've heard a better version of "Miss the Girl." Siouxsie's keyboard/percussive efforts were nice to see--there's nothing like seeing her beat that metal thing in "Miss the Girl."
A playful duet of "Murdering Mouth" followed into Cale's second (and better) set ending with an amazing interpretation of "Heartbreak Hotel." Then it was another "dance-your-ass-off" time with the driving "But Not Them" and "Turn it On." Next, it was time to showcase Budgie's amazing talents on "Prettiest Thing." The crowd was mesmerized watching him do his thing. Then, he strapped on the guitar for "B'side Ourselves" which sounded much better than in 1995. Siouxsie's voice is amazing these days.
The main set ended with a highlight for me--my new favorite Creatures' song, "Exterminating Angel." I think it was rightfully the most well received number at all four shows. The pulsing anger just booms in your head. Hate to sound cliched, but this is probably the closest The Creatures will ever come to an "industrial" sound. Whenever I'm pissed off, sad, or depressed, this will definitely be my song of choice. It must be a single.Next, came the encore. Not contrived, or obligatory at all. First a nice duet of "Gun," and then a to-die-for rendition of "Venus in Furs." This song was made for Siouxsie. It's never sounded better.
One down, and three to go. I couldn't have asked for more out of that first experience.
by Sean Barrow
Wow! Last night was amazing! It was a packed house by the time John Cale went on stage some time after 10pm and he was very warmly received. I was unfortunately positioned directly in front of him and his keyboard and had to dodge a few saliva missles during his first few songs. I liked his guitar stuff better as those songs were a little more conventional, but the crowd liked it all. I guess there were many Velvet fans mixed with the doom cookies. Sioux came out of course, during the middle of "Hedda Gabbler" and the crowd predictably went nuts. She was wearing her vinyl pants with some kind of bondage/strap on attachment and a short, vinyl jacket over a transparent black animal print top. She really had fun with the crowd, demanding her flowers that someone was waving to her (some ratty looking daisies) and after taking them, asked "Is that all?" Her hair was spiky like in the promo picture for her first set and slicked back for the second set. Budgie was hidden from me behind the drum kit for most of the night but I think he was wearing his short sleeve mesh top under a vest and a black skirt. The new songs sounded great, particularly "Disconnected" and "Prettiest Thing." The old stuff naturally got a fantastic response: "Tattoo," "Pluto Drive," "Miss The Girl," "But Not Them," and "B Side Ourselves." The encore was the duet of "Gun" and "Venus In Furs." They all looked like they had a good time. Even Susan in her Catholic schoolgirl plaid skirt to whom Sioux said at one point that it was nice to have another girl on tour with her. As they walked off Sioux said "See you tomorrow!" I'll definitely be there.
I didn't stay afterward. I think there was a separate party going on and the crowd on line outside didn't look like they were the doom cookie type like I was dressed as. Only the white Creatures/Cale T was on sale and the Eraser Cut CD for $15(!). I didn't see any pins or the Sad Cunt 7".