Saturday, December 27, 2008

Tonight: Fragile Porcelain Mice/NIL8

If you like reminiscing, this is the week to do it. Last night the Unconcious played at the Lucas Schoolhouse, rocking their funky college-rock from the early 90's, Pale Divine will be playing a nearly sold-out show on Monday at the Pageant, bringing the drama of their early 90's rock, and tonight. Well, tonight we'll be kicking it old-skool, but with 2 bands that have never really gone away.

NIL8 hail from Springfield, Illinois. Here's what All Music Guide has to say about them:

Powerful foursome from Springfield, IL, N.I.L.8 debuted in 1989 with their first vinyl record featuring "Last Flash of Paisley Pastel" and "Too Loud," followed by the self-produced Six Inch Extension in 1991. Led by brothers Jeff Williams and Bruce Williams, the band signed up to Fundamental Records before issuing Hallelujah I'm Gonna Kill Myself in 1993. N.I.L.8 started getting involved in the U.S. hardcore punk field, performing intense live shows with songs mainly based on social issues. 1995's Eunuch became their first Fuse Records release, followed by the reissue of Hallelujah I'm Gonna Kiss Myself in 1996 and Doug a year later.
~ Drago Bonacich, All Music Guide

Here's what Old Skool has to say about them:

They rock, they are fun, and sometimes they are a little sloppy while they are rocking your ass off. Here they are doing "Basement Show":

Fragile Porcelain Mice have a been a live force for over 15 years. While they no longer tour as extensively as they did in the 90's, they still play 4-5 shows a year, and always bring the rock show. Their shows this year have featured a few new songs, so my hope is that a new recording will be coming in 2009. The best way I can describe them is a cross between Jesus Lizard and Rage Against The Machine, with some Refused thrown in there for good measure. Of course bands hate being compared to other bands, but that's what I hear. Here's a video of the band during their peak of popularity at the late, lamented Mississippi Nights (now a casino parking lot. Ya bastards!). I place this at about 1997 using advanced carbon dating technology:

As I said, the band never went away, but Tim (guitar) left for a while, and the band's popularity waned as band members got married, had kids, and generally played out a whole heck of a lot less. Tim eventually came back into the fold, and FPM have been bringing the same electricity to each live show, but the crowds are more in the 200-300 range, versus the sold out Nights shows, which were around 1,200 people. The live show is great each. and. every. time. Here they are in a basement, summer of '06, no fancy PA, no light show, bringing the raw rock as they cover "Dirty Deeds":

Oh, and look for a rare Old Skool cameo toward the end, rocking with my eyes closed (hey, it was 1 AM! Did I tell you I was old?):

That was a great night, and there have been many seeing these boys. Of course, I should disclose that Tim is my brother, and that I used to help with most of their CD covers. But I would still try to see Fragile as many times as possible even without those facts. Add that to the fact that this is one of Lucas Schoolhouse's last shows before closing, and it's compelling evidence to be there. I hope they don't turn this club into a parking lot. See ya.

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