Photos and Review by Dave Nebbia
To say I was looking forward to this show is an understatement. I have been a huge fan of everything Maynard James Keenan has done musically. Tool and Perfect Circle are two of my favorite bands. I’ve seen them both perform and was really excited to see the one band of his I have yet to see live: Puscifer.
Before getting to the venue, I wanted to familiarize myself with the opening band: Moodie Black. I’ve never heard of them, and probably neither have many others at The House of Blue in Boston.
Moodie Black is originally from the Phoenix area and their music is described as being “experimental noise rap.” They wound up opening for Puscifer because Maynard’s wife put on a playlist with their music during her birthday as they harvested their vineyard. They liked the band, dug deeper, and reached out. Here they are, finding a gig of a lifetime!
The band came on, the stage was dark, and the crowd was quietly waiting to hear and see what they were all about. An early packed house for this band’s first trip to Boston, and they were ready. A three-piece band that consists of drummer Bentley Monet, vocals by Kristen Martinez AKA “K. Death”, and guitarist Sean Lindahl.
Their set was almost one long composition of all of their songs. A blend of Rap, electronic noise with melody and a purpose, and a back beat that filled the space really well. Kristen came out on stage and was a refreshing presence. A transgender woman who caught us all off guard by her command of the stage and by her confidence in letting us all know they belonged there. A dark set that had some really good moments musically and visually. I’ll be checking their music out as they have many singles and records over the span of many years. Give them a listen. If you like experimental music that has a really good vibe to it give Moodie Black a chance. I’m glad I was able to see them. I’m a fan.
After a brief intermission, a public service message from Maynard came on letting everyone know that under NO circumstance would cell phone pics and videos be allowed. Signs were up everywhere, and the message was clear. They see you, you get escorted out of the building with no re-entry. On with the show. The band opened with the song “Bread and Circus” and Maynard sang at the back in almost complete darkness. He then went into one of their skits with singer Carina Round. The two went back and forth while Maynard went from side to side preaching to her and then the crowd. Maynard has been known to have some really elaborate stage props and has even played a show with a wrestling ring on stage while wrestling goes on during the set. The stage show was a lot tamer, but still visually very cool. No spoiler alert here. The band was very talented, with drummer Gunnar Olsen being the newest member. He was great! A studio drummer in high demand, and he has played with many greats over the years.
They played a very eclectic set with tones and styles all over the place. It is what I really like about the music of Maynard’s bands, and Puscifer seems to be all about that. Many songs had the audience singing along. The room was alive! They played a long set and had 4 encore songs. So, a lot to take in for my first time seeing them, and it will not be the last. It was a great show by a very talented band. One thing to note, after I was done shooting the two songs the band gave us, I noticed the merch line was STILL all the way to the back of the club. The fans of this band LOVE this band. I will admit they had some very cool show posters that change every show. Different artists and all limited runs. So, get in line early for some killer stuff.