Whew! Whole lot of White Fang on this blog lately. I promise this'll be the last of it (for at least a little bit), but Saturday's duel house show featuring White Rainbow, Rob Walmart, Extreme Animals and the fanged however-many-piece carried the intensity and the magic to make it legendary, so I thought I'd share. Originally slated to be at White Fang's cove, SK8 n Rhone, the show was moved to Clatter House after issues with leasing, the landlord and angry neighbors—but it moved back to SK8 'n' Rhone midway through, when the cops shut things down at the replacement location.
White Rainbow's Adam Forkner plugged in his white electric guitar to be the first act of the evening, sitting on the stained beige carpet downstairs at the Clatter House with his back to the audience (also seated, in deep sonic contemplation). When cops arrived at the tail-end of White Rainbow's basement set, kids without the five dollar admission price hustled inside with enough time to catch Forkner's final song. Even though that herd of inward-bound patrons eliminated the front-lawn loitering, the cops made it clear the party was over—for the Clatter House, at least. Decided then and there, the festivities would continue at SK8 'n' Rhone, a risky maneuver, indeed. A mass exodus of bicyles and cars quickly made their way from Northeast to Southeast Portland.
I got a ride with Alberta and Dan from Reporter. We gossiped in the car with some loud music from outside providing us an increasingly loud and curious soundtrack. When we got out of the Reportermobile we realized that that music was not just some random boombox, but Rob Walmart and three accomplices creating music from his truck in the middle of the street. Everyone standing outside seemed to be multi-tasking: enjoying the music while at the same time wondering to themselves "How have the cops not come yet?" I heard that question muttered multiple times as I made my way from behind the truck to the side where Walmart sat (in the foot space of the passenger side seat). In front of a recently dismembered tree and all its accompanying bark-dust, Walmart channeled his energy into the mic he held in both hand, only resting to take laborious drags off a cigarette.
(Note: You can nouse over the bottom of the slideshow to manually scroll through the photos)
The moment the last Rob Walmart song was aired, the cops arrived for the second time (the first at this location). At that time, most attendees were already inside, but those that weren't quickly followed suit and then outside again to the back porch where most all the guests were corralled:
I don't know how they did it, whoever did it, but apparently a convincing argument was made that the party was on its last legs—so the cops didn't shut it down, they drove off. That allowed for the final two acts of the evening to play: Extreme Animals and White Fang.
There was a little confusion as to whether the night would go on, but indeed—after a long break—it did. The announcement was made and almost everyone present made their way down the darkened staircase to see the Extreme Animals duo showcase its skittering electronic beats enhanced by live drums and head bangin'. High-energy would be an understatement for this pair, which shares a member with tripped-out cartoon arts collective Paper Rad. The twosome was just as frenzied as Paper Rad's visuals would suggest, comical too—cartoonishly imitating flute playing, and interacting with the busting-at-the-seams crowd via strange fingertip contact.
Next was White Fang, whose set wasn't exactly announced. Instead, people took note when the final members made their way down to the basement and proceeded downward in similar fashion. There was definitely an influx of people once the music started pounding, as what started as a sparse mosh-pit instigated by the group's semi-official photographer Jordan Strong quickly brought the basement to a swell by the second song. Even with the basement's two tiny windows open, there was more sweat than air. The experience included crowd-surfing, band members on friends' shoulders and a band playing at its tightest. Thaddeus Clemmings' maniacal percussion made a case for just how essential the seemingly minor cabasa
truly is. People were so into it—raising drinks and fists alike with ever-present smiles as they shouted lyrics along with frontman Erik Gage and his fellow (mic-less) bandmates.
The whole evening—not just the joyous White Fang reveling (like I said, we're going on Fang hiatus for a while)—was all rather triumphant and a fitting send-off for the bands involved, which are all soon to embark on musical adventures outside of Portland.
Question: Does anyone know how to make it so these Flickr slideshows won't automatically scroll through the photos? That would be helpful. Email me, cjarman at wweek dot com, if you have an answer for me. Thanks! -Ed