The Mark Sparkles, The Anchor, Anchor Down, Success! – The Morgue
Published 08-27-2009 on my old wordpress blog.

As my first show back from Europe, I was a little disappointed in myself for talking to less people. But I think what I learned in Europe is that I am not a quitter. So here’s a review despite my disappointment in my efforts to be social.

The Morgue
DIY venue in Georgetown. They have a bathroom. They have lots of shows coming up. I hope they don’t get shut down. I recognized lots of people from the Mike Park/Classics of Love show I went to, including the dude I made friends with on Flickr sort of. I should have talked to more people. Next time.

I liked most of Success! a lot. Every once in a while they would throw in a part of a song that didn’t make sense, though. And some of the lyrics I would have done differently. They seemed like really nice guys, though (they *are* from Seattle after all). I’m curious to hear more of their recorded work. As the first Hot Water Music sound-alike band of the evening, they were pretty good and I wouldn’t mind giving them a second chance. I also have to check out the lyrics to one song that sounded like they were blaming everything on women. Let me do that right now. … Well, I can’t because myspace is stupid. If you don’t go there to check out what they sound like, they sound like Hot Water Music + Dropkick Murphys at times. Like Leatherface + One Man Army at other times. Like Alkaline Trio + Tom Waits. Gravelly vocals and east coast melodic punk. I’d like to read those lyrics, guys.

Anchor Down
Anchor Down are 75% from Portland. Another of the three gravel-throated bands this evening, I very much liked how these guys stuck out. I’d put this in the Hot Water Music + Jawbreaker camp. It had some bay area undertones to their melodic post-hardcore. Maybe a little Small Brown Bike-y with some epitaph sing along bits. Cool and catchy songwriting. The drums were a little hard to hear in the space and this is the first show I’ve been to where someone asked the bassist to turn *up*. I bought their record and listened to the songs online and they’re all solid and catchy. Of all the n-th generation post-hardcore bands springing up recently, I think I like what is going on with this Portland quartet. I particularly like the work between the singers. Their lyrics, from what I can tell, are pretty well done, also. I will definitely go catch Anchor Down next time I can. Hopefully they’ll come back to a venue with better sound or better acoustics. I’d like to sing along!

The Anchor
I just read all the Ben Snakepit comics, so I was psyched to see some Austin bands come to my town. Unfortunately, O Pioneers did not make the show for some reason (I should have talked to more people. Next time.), so I only got one dose of TX. That dose was administered in the friendly and excited-to-be-here The Anchor. As an example of their friendliness, the guitarist and I had a lovely conversation about waxing for dudes regarding the cover of their split with another “anchor” band, Anchor Arms. By the way, if you haven’t heard, “anchor” is the new “blood.” If you don’t have it in your band name, you might as well not be a band. The Anchor is clearly more of a “let’s not take things so seriously” type of band. Yet, perhaps ironically, they sound quite a lot like the Broadways if you play the record on 45 instead of 33 and 1/3. Their songs are pleasantly short and to the point, as well as fast and energetic. Even now, I’m tapping along to their recorded stuff. You should go pick some up if you like fast punk and having fun. Of all the HWM-like bands this evening, this was the punkest. This was definitely a fun end to my night of anti-social activity in a social place. When the music was going, I didn’t mind so much.

I didn’t stay for The Mark Sparkles. I have my reasons.

Unrelated: Maybe I should get a Minor Threat patch or straightedge tattoos so I can start drinking. This is an empty threat, of course. My unflinching dedication to causes that everyone else has long since forgotten keeps me distant. I can’t help it: when I say something, I mean it. Waaaaaaaaah!

Tonight I’m headed to show #2 of my five nights of social activities, let’s see if I can talk to more than two people. I just got a haircut and I’ll be wearing my fanciest plaid shirt. I think I can do this.

If you like this page, you can buy me a coffee.

Keywords: Anchor Down, show, success, The Anchor, The Mark Sparkles

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