Orgy | 03.02.12

live orgy_75The new lineup is reminiscent of the old, with all members having a strange, alt-metal glamour to them.

 

with One Eyed Doll
Brewskeez, St. Louis

Orgy never officially disbanded, but they haven’t come out with an album in eight years and haven’t toured in seven. Front man Jay Gordon figured out that if Orgy would carry on, he’d have to put together a new band. Jay and the four new members are currently recording a new album with collaboration from Skrillex. To promote the revitalized band, they are on tour with the delectably morose One Eyed Doll from Austin. Their show at Brewskeez in O’Fallon gave a handful of local bands the opportunity to display their talents.

The four-piece Giants in the Sky started early in the evening with a handful of songs while the crowd was still showing up. Their drummer stayed on the kit for the following band, Connibal Road. They had some heavy bass lines and proved to be more effective in their faster moments. For the most part, the night’s lineup of bands all fell within the general hard rock category, except for We Could Be Kings, who came on with the night’s only acoustic act. Their drummer was out with the flu, but the drums didn’t matter much as the focus was on the two guitars. The songs were performed well but didn’t have much variety in sound and proved, ultimately, to be boring.

What really kicked the concert in gear was the three-piece Common Era. Until their performance, I felt like I had been witnessing a talent show for friends. Once their first song, “Grow into You,” started, the crowd decided to start inching toward the open floor and exert some energy by shoving each other around. Guitarist and lead vocalist Joey Williams released a guttural scream of the title during the song that had a charging effect on the crowd. “All the Way” has an ominous bass line from Steve Nackman that’s inviting and frightening all at once. “Perineum” enforced that these three musicians can morph together and hit all the right notes as they bashed into a solid break down near the end of the song. “Heretic” fires forward with relentless strength until it just stops, and then is brought back by Tobin Hafeli’s drum punches.

live one eyed dollNow that the crowd was good and rowdy, Shattermask came on with a strange, hardcore performance. The lead singer, Brian Dodson, is a short and wily black man who was painted in white face. The four members put on white masks, as well, while they delivered a solid show. The bassist somehow played his devilish bass while wearing red cotton gloves. Midway through their set, a girl was brought on stage and began to do a strip tease while puncturing her face and body with needles—she could later be found in the back of the bar with a bloody rag to her mouth.

One Eyed Doll is something special. Lead guitarist and vocalist Kimberly Freeman is like a fantasy girl only Tim Burton could dream up. She sings in a sweetly innocent voice but her lyrics are usually violently dark. She dedicated “Be my Friend” to the crowd: her friends. In the song, she sings about burying a girl, chopping up a boy, and wearing a choir girl’s skin—all in her cutesy voice. She thrashed her hip-length hair about, spit into the air, and lured the crowd into participation.

Orgy’s Jay Gordon hung out among the crowd most of the night, always in sight since he was easily the tallest person in Brewskeez. He finally took the stage with the rest of his new band around midnight. The new lineup is reminiscent of the old, with all members having a strange, alt-metal glamour to them. Their set was only a handful of songs but they covered tracks from all three Orgy albums. At one point, Freeman left her guitar aside to sing backup for Gordon.

There couldn’t have been more than 150 people in attendance, and I overheard someone comment, “Oh how the mighty have fallen”—alluding to over a decade ago, when Orgy played arena shows during the Family Values tour—but give Gordon credit. After years of not putting together songs, it’s valiant to get back in the scene and try to stir things up again. As expected, the night ended with their famous cover of New Order’s “Blue Monday.” | Alex Schreiber

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