Italian Horror Songs

Dear Reader, we here at The Little Black Egg have found it advisable to get regular doses of Grade A skronk to inoculate ourselves against the mediocre bullshit in life that can fasten itself to you like an invisible lamprey and drain your bodily humors. So last week, when it came to our attention that Italian band Hiroshima Rocks Around were playing a show in Budapest, we set off into the night to find them. HRA plays a species of weird, noisy thrash stuff that is all too rare in these parts (or anywhere else, really).

The show was at Filter club, which is a bar with a secret music venue in the back. Three bands were on the bill. The first opener, Grip Casino, was a guy who did a solo electric guitar and singing thing, including a nearly indecipherable cover of the Fall’s “Hotel Bloedel.” It was a lotta fun.

“?” (a band, not the famed Mysterian) went on next. I wasn’t sure what to expect from these guys, and what I got were these hilarious noisy punk tunes by a bunch of people wearing weird masks. For instance, the drummer had a Rubik’s cube mask, and the guitarist guy had bandages wrapped all around his head. The band also featured one guy who didn’t play anything, but instead capered around the front of the stage, showcasing his silent comedy moves and doing disgusting things with a harmonica. A record is coming out soon, I gather. ? is one of those bands that verge on being performance art, and were enthusiastically heckled by a loud group of soused fans.

In the break before Hiroshima Rocks Around came on, a member of ?’s extra-hydrated posse demanded to know what I thought of the Dog Faced Hermans. I forget what I told him, but anyway, as I was talking he suddenly fell face-first into the merch table, like kind of like something out of a Buster Keaton movie. Then he got up and wandered off. It was stylish.

I also managed to talk to the folks who booked the show. They put on these events under the moniker RNR 666. They’d previously got the band Tunnel of Love over here, amongst others. NYC’s The Sightings were booked to play next week, and the RNR 666 people had set their sights on getting Live Fast Die to play. How cool is that, right? It occurred to me that these were the people that any stateside unorthodox/noisy/weird punk bands ought to contact if they wanted to play a show in Budapest.

Suddenly, it was time for the Main Event. For their part, Hiroshima Rocks Around put on a high-energy show that kicked my ass. Propelled by a furious drummer, HRA’s singer/guitar mangler guy belted shit out into a little clip-on popstar microphone, while the saxophonist (and sometime bassist) gave Peter Brotzmann a run for his money in the “playing so hard you burst a fucking vein in your head” category of avant horn squealery. The sheer amount of skronk in the air was probably about 5 decibels away from being fatal to organic matter.

Here is some video from the show taken by other people. I didn’t take any pictures of the show because I couldn’t find my camera.

You know, when I think of Italian bands, I think of Goblin and their ilk. Now, there’s nothing wrong with Goblin, but you know what? This is 2008, man. I want my horror movies scored by bands like Hiroshima Rocks Around. Someone who makes horror movies oughta get on that. Every single song HRA played felt like it was about to unbalance and lose its cohesion, but that never quite happened. This wasn't some math rock bullshit, either—these Italians deal in music made outta raw noise and terror, and they make it real fun.

You can get their stuff here and here.