Robert Pollard, the High Strung, and … Laundry Room Squelchers?
Is this a typo on the Black Cat site, or are they being serious? I just did a triple-take, clicked on the links from the schedule a few times to make sure, and apparently it's legit: Robert Pollard's Boston Spaceship will be playing the mainstage on Saturday evening, supported by Detroit popsters The High Strung, and Miami noise-punk scoundrels Laundry Room Squelchers.
No, I'm not a Guided By Voices fanboy geekin' over another Bob Pollard incarnation; the real cause for excitement (well, for me) is the presence of Miami-based madman Rat Bastard's nebulous Squelchers unit, one of the most unpredictable outfits in all of noise's underbelly. A founding member of the despicable To Live and Shave in LA, Mr. Bastard (Frank Falestra to Mom) has been cracking heads, bursting eardrums, and causing structural damage in shitty clubs for decades, most recently with his sprawling International Noise Conference, which touts: "No droning, no mixing boards, no laptops."
I had the opportunity to see the Squelchers at last year's No Future Fest in Chapel Hill, NC, where a burly man with black-rimmed glasses and beanie (Rat Bastard) hurled his static-spewing amplifier into the faces and chests of audience members. It looked something like this:
You can imagine my intrigue then, at the juxtaposition of such confrontational guitar trash and hook-laden pop-punk for Saturday's bill, though it makes a bit more sense after some Googling and a visit to the Squelchers site. Pollard and Finestra have actually collaborated before — back in 2003 for Pollard's Motel of Fools EP. And since the "Laundry Room Squelchers" are basically anyone who can/will tour with Mr. Bastard at the time, the lineup for Saturday will consist solely of Finestra and local guitar/electronics whiz Chris Grier, also a collaborator with TLASILA. Given that this is basically an indie rock showcase, I imagine the Squelchers set will be significantly less violent and involve a more stationary guitar assault similar to this:
But you never know, heads might roll.