By: Glory Gene
Photos: Daniel Chavez
Chelsea Wolfe | website | facebook | twitter | bandcamp |
Mohawk, Austin | April 28, 2016
Looming grey clouds hugged the venue and surrounding blocks in downtown Austin as pre-Levitation shows went on as planned. I opted to catch the Chelsea Wolfe and Pinkish Black showcase. Considering the cancellation washout (sorry) that hit a few hours prior, the overall atmosphere of Mohawk didn’t hold any visible bitterness. Everyone was at attention for the bands as the crowd gradually increased throughout the night. Local lords of sound Worshiper Cabinets back lined the bands and demonstrated their sonic chops as an emerging cab company. Keep an eye out for these guys while their work starts to pop up as a staple for bands in Austin and beyond. I arrived in time to catch some light rain and The Well. The three piece offered up a strong set of heavy groove and energy. Between the bassist’s subtle “Ozzy eyes” at the crowd and the well paired vocals riding the air, this set gave a much needed jolt of awesome to the lineup.
Where The Well provided a stoner rock vibe, Pinkish Black picked up to gracefully segue into more gothic realms of sound with their five song set. In between slowly swaying and crooning into the mic, keyboardist Daron performed a ballet of cigarette to mouth that gave me multitasking anxiety. Jon’s drumming somehow manages both to stand alone in his timing and beats, but perfectly complement his band mate’s ominous keyboard fuzz. Just like the last time I saw them play, these guys brought a brooding intensity that’s so mesmerizing, almost an hour later, you’re left feeling like the set has ended too soon.
Following last year’s release, Abyss, I was really intrigued to see Chelsea Wolfe’s current set. She came out in black from head to platforms, hair in her face and veiled in lighting tones of blue and pink. Her presence is both ethereal and awkward, no doubt contributing to her pretty diverse crowd of fans. Her sound this time around was heavier and fuller bodied thanks in part to her killer drummer. She played a satisfying mix of songs from various albums bringing the crowd to an enthusiastic swell when she followed ‘Feral Love’ with ‘House of Metal’. She sang with her trademark vulnerable self-possession, at one point dropping to her knees and holding hands with one of the ladies in the front row. Her trembly voice sounded great, however, at a few moments drowned out by her band. Her stage banter was minimal, echoing sentiments of disappointment to the crowd. I think she did more than her part to help make it up to them with a fascinating performance.