During what felt like a torrential downpour, Brooklyn venue the Acheron was packed full with a wet sweaty crowd waiting to see Memphis ur-garage rockers Ex-Cult. While the Acheron is usually host to crusty D-beat punk and metal bands, they were hosting a much better smelling garage punk event tonight. I’m usually accustomed to seeing at least three Discharge shirts and at least one gnarly giant dreadlock at the Acheron, but tonight had a much different vibe. Main support for Ex-Cult were local heroes Foster Care, hands down the most punk punk band in New York. You truly never know what you will get with this band. Sometimes a member won’t show up, sometimes they are too drunk to play, but almost always there seems to be a bottle or pint glass flying through the air. Although always unpredictable, they were in top shape playing a tight set and riling up the crowd on Friday. Singer Chris “Teenager” Dikeman jumped into the crowd midway through the set, and bass player Jesse “Martinez” Crawford was all over the place demanding people to bring him beer, many of whom happily obliged. As per usual, a hard act to follow.
Ex-Cult quickly set up and began their set with a soft spoken introduction that would make any fan of mumblecore proud. From there they launched into a moody, noisey set of fuzzed-out, reverby, angular punk awesomeness. Singer Chris Shaw marauds around the stage with an intense stare and spitting out lyrics as people in the crowd were going apeshit throwing cups and cans of empty beer on the stage. Shaw got hit a few times, but gave zero fucks. Ex-Cult also featured a guitar player with side burns that would make Wolverine blush. His guitar playing was as grandiose as his mutton chops and he was all over the stage and crowd, too. The rest of the band was much more subdued than Shaw and Mutton Chops, but still the band played an intensely powerful set for about 45 minutes, making everyone in the room forget about all the other thunder and lightning outside.
Photos by Jeremy Harris