Lotus Fucker (DC), State Violence (DC/MD) and Nukkehammer (Columbus, OH) offered fast, loud, noisy sets in the basement of a house in Baltimore on September 10th. Meanwhile, upstairs, someone held a rave party. State Violence thundered through their set, sounding great. Then, the atmosphere in the room changed. As the Nukkehammer drummer hit his drums with artillery gun speed, a girl near me slowly rolled her hips and flailed her arms like she was trying to doggy paddle. Nukkehammer is going for that crusty, Swedish sound. While attempting to deliver some brutal punk, in Baltimore, they inspired folk-style gyrations .
When Lotus Fucker started playing, the lights went out. Their music boomed through the dark - extra loud given Pat's stack of amps that nearly touched the ceiling. Plus, a huge line of peddles layered on the distortion, which reinforced the sense of confusion in the pitch black room. A strobe light pulsed on and suddenly I discovered Dan, the Lotus Fucker singer, right in front of me. Giggling strangers nearby tore apart and, then, tossed glo sticks around. Green dots began to shine on my Rations shirt, my arm, and my leg. Christine, from State Violence, growled about glowing as she rubbed at the incandescent green and orange blotches on her skin. Movement in the strobe light appeared choppy and incoherent. I thought about seizures and stared at the chaos. Some girl tried to combine a hippy dance move, waiving her arms toward the ceiling as if she was trying to invoke rain, with a slam dance, bumping into people. The whole thing seemed surreal to me. Our friend Rob, who just moved here from New Jersey and went to Canada with Lotus Fucker last week, labeled it the best Lotus Fucker show ever. Dan seemed confused, pointing out that the band was much tighter in New York and the confusion with lights had thrown the band of in his opinion.
On Saturday, Lotus Fucker played in DC with Nukkehammer again. The show was in Dan's basement, which was hot and the audience was sparse. Sizzling bands, though. Lotus Fucker sounded much tighter and produced a true wall of sound. Nukkehammer seemed a little less like head on, brutal hardcore. The basement was hot and the crowd was thin. Dan, however, seemed annoyed that he kept seeing people walk by with cups from his kitchen. He asked: "Isn't it enough I'm letting them into my basement?" Jon, the drummer from Lotus Fucker responded: "OK, Dan. 'Dear HeartattaCk'." In the parking lot, some of Dan's neighbors danced in an open garage, participating in a Rhythm and Blues block party. I could hear The Temptations singing about sunshine on a cloudy day as I waited for Lotus Fucker to set up. I turned down invitations from them to form a dance line as I helped Lotus Fucker load up Pat's van.
PS I asked the drummer of Nukkehammer how to pronounce his band's name. He told me that it's a made up name, so I can pronounce it any way I like. He pronounces it "Nuke Hammer."