Archive for world inferno friendship society

World/Inferno Friendship Society Concert Review

Posted in Concert Reviews with tags , , , , on April 26, 2009 by dillonator
world/inferno friendship society

photo: polstarphotography.com

I didn’t really know what to expect from the World/Inferno Friendship Society.  I went there on a recommendation from a friend, and a fairly ambivalent recommendation at that.  But I watched some videos online, read some background info, and felt like they could be interesting.

How could I not have been into these guys?  They call themselves “circus punk!”  Could it be any more up my alley?

Frontman Jack Terricloth’s Sinatra-as-vampiric-protopunk mesmerized the audience with lyrics alternatively growled and howled (Nick Cave was 13 when Terricloth was born; is it possible for a 13-year-old to father a child?), while behind him, his tight sixpiece-tonight band rollicked from klezmer to waltz with the fury of the Stooges and the horn section of Dexy’s Midnight Runner.

Like I said, I didn’t know exactly what to expect, so it was by sheer luck that I happened to be near the back of the Ottobar last night when Terricloth hit the stage.  Had I been just a few feet closer to the stage, I would have been trampled by the sudden rush of punks in a shovy mood.  Never have I seen such a sudden, synchronized moshpit.

That should have been my first warning: these were the Infernites.

What was particularly cool about the show was the audience participation.  World Inferno has a following that could easily be described as cult-like:  one kid I met at the show claimed it was his 50th time seeing them live, and a quick glance at their forum shows how much of a community they are, with rides and sleeping arrangements being organized online.  With all this in mind, it’s little wonder that the crowd acted like they did.

I felt like I was at a midnight showing of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.  Without any cues from the band, audience members would all perform certain dances during certain songs, form a circle during others, and thrash their damn brains out during others.  The unexpected highlight for me was when the crowd suddenly paired up and started waltzing, couples crashing into each other in a whirling frenzy, like a drunken Muppets sketch.

And, at one point, I’m pretty sure I saw someone throw some money into the circle of death.  Was he trying to play craps?  Pretty awesome.

Check out the live video of “Me vs. Angry Mob,” taking special note of Terricloth’s sweet moves at 2:40.  You’ll be running for Hallowmas in no time.