There just isn't a lot of great live music opportunities in Dayton, Ohio. National club acts go to Cincinnati or Columbus, and the local rock scene in the Gem City isn't too hot, either.
Last night, however, a glimmer of hope in an otherwise dull city.
Baltimore's the Fishnet Stalkers opened for local gents the Luxury Pushers at the new Walnut Hills.
We'll classify the entire night as glam-punk.
First, let me say that the new Walnut Hills is a beautiful club, albeit small. I guess that's good considering only about 50 people showed up all night (yet another problem with Dayton area shows).
The Fishnet Stalkers are a high energy group made up of vocalist Stevie Diamond, guitarists Matt Gabs and Conor Behrle, bassist Chris Calabrese and drummer Eric Fauver. These people look like the original Faster Pussycat on stage and Chris likes to jump around a lot, which is fun! There was a drawback: the band's sound was so over-modulated - so distorted - that it was near impossible to understand the singer. Without the ability to really hear the vocals of an up-and-coming originals garage band, it's hard to peg their ability. Judging by technical skill, I would say The Fishnet Stalkers have a lot to offer, and were just having an off night at the hands of an un-trained sound man. According to concert partner Heather "the Fishnet Stalkers are definitely great performers. A ton of energy and good stage presence." She crowned Chris the "Glam Rock God." I agree with this moniker.The band has a debut album out on Indie label Reptilian Records. The Fishnet Stalkers are on a nationwide tour this summer, and will play dates at the Knitting Factory in Hollywood and a show with Vains of Jenna! Hear their music at www.myspace.com/fishnetstalkers.
After the Fishnet Stalkers departed the stage, it was time for the main event and the Luxury Pushers. This Dayton band has been around for awhile, and features Jamy Holliday and C. Wright on guitars and vocals. Bassist Eric Purtle also sings and drummer Bryan LaBonte keeps the (very) fast pace. LXP doesn't like to be pigeon-holed into one category and doesn't like references to punk heroes, so I'll leave that out of this review. I will say that The Luxury Pushers have a pretty great sound, thanks in part to the Fishnet Stalkers making sure the audio guy actually twiddled the nobs during their performance.
The small, but boisterous crowd seemed to really get into the moment and enjoy the music. I would say the band has a fairly large local following, but the size of the crowd was a bit depressing and embarrassing. There was even a post-modern moment when Jamy invited his wife on stage and presented her with a Cold Stone ice cream cake for her birthday. There were a few amused looks around the bar, but I thought it was cute. After the cake, it was back to the rock for several more ultra-fast originals. Toward the end of the set, the band walked amongst the crowd with their instruments, which I think is probably anti-punk, but really glam, so good for them!
The Luxury Pushers have an E.P. called Eat It! Hear their music at www.myspace.com/luxurypushers.