One of the best and worst things about being close to San Francisco is that the concert you’re going to tends to be either the first of last of a tour. And so, it makes reviewing shows difficult when faced with the latter. Sunday at the Fillmore is an example of a great end to a tour. As I write this article, the bands have played their last show and are surely headed home for some well-deserved down time. And it is well-deserved. With a group of excellently matched bands and Mindless Self Indulgence’s always offensively good work, it can only be said those who missed it missed out.
Having never been to a show at the Fillmore in SF, I was immediately excited to discover the venue was the kind of small, perhaps even intimate space I like best. We only shuffled about for a short time before the first band took the stage. The Iris, a Phoenix-based post-pop group, managed to drag enthusiasm out of the always-skeptical crowd. Reminiscent of Marilyn Manson and Placebo, The Iris was a good choice to warm up the room and showed enormous potential despite being still a bit rough around the edges.
Death Valley High followed with a much more theatrical performance. The invented subgenre of ‘doom pop’ is surprisingly fitting for this band. An apocalyptic celebration may be the best comparison for their mix of energy and dark aesthetic. Though probably less than half the crowd had heard of them before, we were sold by the time their set ended. Knowing the words seemed a bit unimportant in the face of genuinely good music, an enthusiastic singer, and on-stage cheerleaders. The audience was more than primed for the headliner.
And here we return to the difficulty of San Francisco as a concert center. It’s always a disappointment to review a good show when there is no time to convince readers that they absolutely must see the performance for themselves. Such is the case now, when the tour is over. It’s amazing what a truly impressive live performance can accomplish, and Mindless Self Indulgence has to be seen to be taken seriously. Or not so seriously, as the case may be.
MSI’s singer has a tradition of wearing the same outfit throughout the tour, and at the near-end of this tour, it certainly showed. Taking the stage in completely pink (and exceptionally faded) attire, he led the crowd into the awaited frenzy. MSI had a powerful stage presence from the beginning, engaging everyone with the most obscene banter, and god help anyone who didn’t know what they were getting into. All of us who did know were promptly screaming our lungs out, watching a band whose total enjoyment of performing is more than infectious.
Mindless Self Indulgence or the company they keep is not for everyone. However, if the idea of doom pop and songs with titles like Assfist and Bitches appeals, then you’ve probably missed a concert that you would’ve loved, so keep your eye out for the next time these bands come around.
To learn more about the band visit http://mindlessselfindulgence.com/