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  JAPANCAKES w/ 8-Track Gorilla  
  Tasty World  
  Athens, GA  
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You see, I don't hate the Guy in the Gorilla suit (unlike certain other minions). I'm not going to go out of my way to view his schtick, but I'm also not going to consider it so abysmally bad that I ought to avoid at all costs. Furthermore, I kind of like seeing people's reactions to this guy in moth-eaten gorilla suit singing really bad 1970s songs while scantily clad chicks dance on the floor in front of him. On the other hand, it's not like I really pay attention to the 8-Track Gorilla. I mean, it's fun to watch the audience and all, but how much karaoke can one really listen to? And, in the end, the gorilla's antics just make you want to see the headliner even more.

Now the headliner, Japancakes, were a band on my master "to see" list. They've played around for a while, and I've heard good things about them, so I wanted to see them. However, their publicity from Kindercore records states something like "the first time these guys played out, they played a D chord for 45 minutes." Now, I know a lot of you post-rock people can get into that. But I can't. I once almost killed someone for forcing me to listen to 70 minutes of a guy holding down one organ note; I can't imagine listening to a 7 piece band doing the same thing!

So here I'm standing in this dive in Athens, eagerly awaiting the headliner (see? That's the effect of the gorilla...) but yet fearing the concert all the same (and that's the effect of the publicity).

And when Japancakes started to play....well, it wasn't what I was expecting. Essentially, I heard Lambchop by way of Sharkquest. Extremely competent musicians playing catchy little riffs and letting each instrument build and sustain in a different way until the songs come together to close. Or perhaps even not close, and then build again.

With the cello (missing in a subsequent performance), the songs had a faintly melancholy, yet still pop air which drew me in. The lack of vocals didn't bother me; the lack of any really structure didn't bother. Instead, I found myself ride wave after wave of music - ebbing and flowing and becoming this thing of beauty. And I knew I'd found myself a new band to go on the "don't miss" list.

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