Austin's Mutating Meltdown, a band featuring two members of Finally Punk and their friend Chad on organ, brought their lead guitarless sound to The Drunken Unicorn last week in support of hard-art rockers Hawks and Sunglasses.
I, Octopus opened, but they played so early I missed the entire set. They apparently are an experimental indie outfit from New Orleans and perform a song called "Rag Tag Bunch of Apostrophes."
Sunglasses were next, and I was way more impressed this time than I was when they played in February with The Coathangers. Their lead singer is an awesome performer, and they have condensing thrashy metal sounds down to two minutes.
Mutating Meltdown were third, and they lived up to the hype. Songs like "Fantasy," the title track of their debut 7", made up a set of female-fronted (most of the time) tunes with simple organ parts. The real highlight was when a guy named Wes was the lone volunteer from the crowd when the band asked if someone wanted to sing a song they hadn't penned vocals for. He ad-libbed like a motherfucker and had better stage presence than some lead singers I could name. Veronica from Finally Punk played drums and she sang one song in Spanish.
Hawks closed, and my first experience seeing them live left me wanting to see them again as soon as possible. To sum it up poorly, their music is an artsy take on hard rock and metal. Their drummer, who also played in Vera Fang, is a beast, and their lead singer pulled shapes as if he was fronting The Rolling Stones or The Booze. Their lead singer is also someone I've now seen nude more times than I would like to remember, but that's rock and roll for you.