In the modern rock era, it is hard to find bands that still believe in the theatrical side of live performances. I can count on one hand how many bands deliver a true spectacle every time they play live: Slipknot, Rammstein, Marilyn Manson, Steel Panther and tonight’s act- Wednesday 13. Incorporating the the visual with the sound, creating characters, making it a memorable experience for all.
Finnish goth-punks Snow White’s Poison Bite are already on stage as the crowd spill in to the venue. Faces painted with skulls and leather jackets, you could easily pass them off as a Misfits tribute act. If only! SWPB are a pretty competent band on record and one that fits with Wednesday 13’s audience, yet this falls flat in the field. They look like they don’t want to be here and the feeling is mutual for the crowd.
Our saving grace is the fact we are going to see a man of many faces, Joseph Poole aka Wednesday 13, who has been involved with many successful projects in the past 20 years. Tonight we are here to celebrate the latest album ‘Monsters of The Universe: Come Out and Plague’ which is his first concept album, making this show more intriguing. One-by-one the band take their positions on a smoky stage. Wednesday 13 himself enters wearing a black hood and monochrome make-up. The X-Files inspired ‘Keep Watching The Skies’ is the opener, creating an atmosphere for the night.
Tracks from ‘Monsters Of The Universe’ make-up most of tonight’s set list. Tracks like ‘Serpent Society’ and ‘Astro Psycho’ are brought to a whole new dimension live. The album as a whole might not be one of the former Muderdolls’ front-man’s most acclaimed albums, but the tracks really shine through live. Changing from his ‘Texas Chainsaw’ style apron to a ram’s skull and cape for the classic ‘House By The Cemetary’. Mr Poole now showcases some of his crowd-pleasers like ‘I Love Watching You Die’ and’Scream Baby Scream’.
The show is almost over, only 14 songs in. Our main-man 13 pulls out a post-apocalyptic sniper rifle complete with a working laser pointer and Ramones sticker. Targeting the whole audience, his encore starts with ‘Scary Song‘ by his first band (Frankenstein Drag Queens From Planet 13) what follows is a love letter to the fans of his first solo album ‘Transylvania 90210’ which turns 10 this year. It doesn’t seem like yesterday when the North Carolina native was trying to make it as a solo artist after establishing himself with Murderdolls and Frankenstein Drag Queens. Iconic tracks from the album such as ‘I Walked With A Zombie’ and ‘Bad Things’ get the more seasoned fans jumping – drawing a line under seemed like a brief, but full set.
The venue may not be as big as the band are used to but the core Wednesday 13 fans are here in droves. Wednesday 13 fans are more admirable than those who casually attend Foo Fighters and Kings Of Leon gigs. These are the REAL passionate fans who hand over their money and keep this industry afloat.
Photo: Ruth Hindson.