There was some seriously bad juju in the air last night. Everyone I knew was upset for one reason or another. Even I was embroiled in an angry text-message war with one of my so-called friends. Yep, it was just one of those angry-at-life days. So as is my usual habit, I headed to a concert to escape all of the bad vibes. I was at the Highland Park American Legion Hall to see a truly sublime act, The Dagons. It seems that we were all in touch with our inner demon last night because this truly stellar band ended their set in with a sudden and unexpected blast of angry emotion. It was a sight to behold.
First of all, Highland Park's American Legion Hall was a pretty bizarre venue. Psychedelic sitar-garage-rock at a recreational hall for military veterans? Really? Regardless, it was still a pretty sweet place for a concert. Pink hair, dreadlocks, and crew cuts all mingled together with ease. The drinks were especially cheap and The Dagons' small group of followers were very excited. Although they're LA based, The Dagons had been off touring in Canada for a while. Finally they were home and ready to get on stage.
As far as garage rock duos go, they were especially unique. Drew Kowalski provided intricate electrified sitar riffs while Karie Jacobson showed off haunting, gorgeous vocals mixed with solemn, twangy guitar. Together, their music was a unique, passionate blending of sorrowful psychedlica. It's the sort of music you play when you're driving through the desert, alone, and at night. The Dagons can travel through ethereal, sad, and forceful. I really dig their stuff.
Supported by a drum machine during the song, "As Close As You May Ever Get" they even took on pulsing industrial edge. Things were picking up and I could have danced all night long to Kowalski as he played the trippy sitar. But those bad vibes were still in the air, remember? Suddenly: CRACK. In the middle of their fantastic song "In Gingham", Kowalski's sitar cracked. Right as it cracked, an amp started spewing mariachi music. Jacobson (without missing a beat) declared, "The sitar has cracked. Radio transmissions are coming in from space. Folks, it's time for the spare sitar! Tame the beast!" They started to play again, but something wasn't right. Something wasn't tuning properly and...
SMASH! Kowalski let loose his pent-up inner demon. In one fell swoop, he smashed his second sitar into a million brilliant black lacquered pieces. The show was over. To quote the girl standing next to me, "That was so punk." And I will give him full credit, Ravi Shankar never did that shit on stage. I only wish I had had the guts to smash my stupid phone right there next to him. And to see someone smash a freaking sitar on stage? Well, I feel as if my life is complete somehow.
Wouldn't life be better if the next time a friend screws you over or a dmv worker pisses you off, you could just smash really large musical instruments? I want to live in that world... Anyway, The Dagons are rad. I'm counting the days until their next show.-Rachel K. www.loudvine.com
Tags: Americam Legion, American Legion Hall, Dragons, Highland Park, LA Music, Legion Hall, Live, Live Music, Live Music Community, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Music, Loudvine, MP3's, Music Network, Punk, The, The Dragons