Room 21, Toxic Shockers, Distill, Single File

Emerson Theatre

Saturday, Nov. 27

Another typical rainy day presented the option of going to the Emerson to hide from the weather. I suppose I went in with a bit of a bias: I had caught bronchitis a few days before so I was fairly pessimistic. The first band, Room 21, played well and had a lot of energy but was trying to copy the Misfits’ style, and made it obvious. The bassist was wearing a Misfits shirt and they played a cover of “Horror Hotel” — and their name even came from the lyrics. The only movement in the audience was a group of misplaced metalheads head banging — and once when someone slammed into them to try to get them to stop.

The next band, Toxic Shockers, played an uneventful set and apparently inspired three people in the front to do the chicken dance, but nothing else. The next band was supposed to be Up Scumbag, whose song “Johnny of Knoxville” made it onto the Indy MP3 Project CD earlier this year, but they cancelled, so Distill came on instead. I was pretty confused because everyone I had talked to told me they were there to see Distill but half the audience left before they even played a single note. They were, by far, the best band of the night.

Another 15 or 20 people left after their set and Single File finished up the show. They technically played all right, as in not dropping their instruments or forgetting to finish songs, but their sound was too “pop-punk” for my taste. I’m sure if I liked that style, I would have loved the show; but as is, it won’t go in the scrapbook.

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