Review: Kemps, Astro Fang at Rock Lobster

Astro Fang, in extreme closeup. Photo by Anderton Leaf Photography.

The Kemps, Astro Fang and John Rambo and the Vietnam

Wars took over the Rock Lobster's stage Feb. 10, playing a free show sponsored

by Butler Scion (which explained the presence of Scion 'zines and bottle

openers on every table).

Up first was The Kemps, an Indianapolis band that

established their home field advantage from note one, opening with a cover of "All

I Have To Do Is Dream," first made famous in 1958 by the Everly Brothers. The sound

of their four-piece, two-guitar attack bounced around the room through their

brisk set. Their start-stop economy rock built to a climax that featured

one member standing atop his amplifier for the start of the last song.

Hailing from Dayton, Ohio, Astro Fang then staked

their claim to the venue. Outer space guitar effects mixed with an utterly

aggressive rhythm section. The bass player used chords quite a lot and the

drummer's kick pedal stayed warm all evening. I can honestly say it was one of

the "loudest bands I've ever heard," as the shaky note scribbled in my notebook

read. The set ended with a bang when the bass player picked up microphone with

his teeth on the last song, "Super Rat."

John Rambo and the Vietnam Wars were charged with

tying everything together, as they did recently at the Melody Inn's Punk Rock

Night. The band was as consistently rocking as expected, building to an encore

with Elvis Costello's "You Belong To Me."