Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Who wouldn't go to see Wooden Shjips?

I went to see Wooden Shjips again on Friday night, this time at Thee Parkside, a killer venue in my humble opinion. There were two other bands playing, but I only checked out the Shjips, I arrived just before they played and bounced after they finished their last song. I’ve been a fan since about the fall of 2007 when I heard their self-title debut and after their sterling contribution to the Mojo magazine Syd Barret tribute, In Search of Syd: 15 Mind-Bending Freakouts. Their debut really made an impression with it’s measured, krautrock and psychedelia infused groovers. I covered the record in my nitewise column in October of 2007, but unfortunately didn’t get a chance to see them until they played at the Eagle Tavern in January of this year. I didn’t have my ear close enough to the underground of the live rock scene in the city, but thankfully now I do.

Friday’s performance at Thee Parkside was stand out as per usual with the bass player, Dusty, laying down hypnotic, minimal but super funky (am I the only one who wants to dance at Wooden Shjips shows?) grooves as the guitar player, Ripley, intones softly but menacingly while his guitar creates a tower of sound. They played a selection from the first album and the most recent one, Dos, and finished their all too short set with “We Ask You To Ride.” I want to see this band on a bill with one other band and on a savagely large sound system with retina blistering visuals. Wooden Shjips is easily one of the best outfits— if not the best — in San Francisco right about now. No contest. Keep eyes and ears peeled for more. And they're off to Europe this month to bless that continent with their tripped out grooviness. Those lucky European bastards would get so see them more than us, they would, wouldn't they?


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