On Friday night, The Filthy Spectacula played the impressively dark-sounding Club Antichrist, with its similarly hair-raising strapline of ‘Europe’s biggest fetish / alternative / crossover event’. To be honest, after all that, the most remarkable thing about the event was possibly the start time for our set: scheduling to go on stage at ten to one in the morning might be a new record for me.
In essence (and this should reassure my partner if no one else), this was a goth club night with a relaxed policy on extremely revealing dress codes (which I only noticed a couple of people exploiting – maybe it was more extreme in the DJ rooms, who knows). In fact if you were looking in the right direction at the right times, the general popularity of military uniforms, gas masks and corsets in grown-up dressing up means you could almost have been in the short-skirted and monochrome corner of a steampunk convention (though steampunks aren’t known for listening to the sort of stuff they were playing here). The exception was basically the top room of Islington’s Electrowerkz, which was hosting an eclectic (note: this is not inherently a value-laden adjective) string of live entertainment acts at intervals through the night.
If the crowd were still on their way to the venue, or too busy looking cool in their black leather and more black, to dance to quasi-German industrial metal band Fleisch (a shame, as they really gave their set their all), they were a little too drunk and rowdy for the rather technical demonstration of tying up one’s partner in rope that was third up. That probably should have been placed before Satan’s Striptease – of which the only obviously evil aspect was the strategy of suckering in the audience with two female performers, followed by a man in (initially quite convincing) drag. One suspects horny gullible men got a nasty shock at some point in his routine. The last quarter of their set was another male act, this time in homage to ‘Dance Magic’ from Labyrinth – which might actually be damnable if you’re a devoted Bowie fan. If, like me, you were standing far enough back for the audience to block most of the performer’s height, then it was merely quite funny.
Anyway, people taking their clothes off drew people to the stage, but I think we were the only act to really get many of them involved. It wasn’t an earth-shaking night for audience reaction by Filthy standards; nothing to a Rumpus or some of the other ‘alternative’ nights we’ve played; but it certainly wasn’t a disappointment either – and given most goths won’t or at least don’t dance to the music of their chosen subculture, if we can get them to dance to dance to us we must be doing something right. Or something very wrong, depending on how you look at it. Hmm.
Continuing a theme of lots of people dressed in old-fashioned formal black, I played an orchestral concert the following night. Actually I have a grim suspicion I’ve used that joke before in this blog, so I won’t try and pursue it any further. Anyway, the rest of the weekend can have another post to itself I think.
Do you run an event with an awesome strapline? Why not hire the Filthy Spectacula to make things a little more genuinely edgy and raucous than would otherwise be the case? We have a clear diary until May … give your punters some stories to tell!