Alright, I know I usually stick to album posts, but sometimes exceptions just need to be made. This is one of those times.
Tonight I showed up at around 6:45 to the Conservatory in OKC for a concert at which PlayRadioPlay! was headlining. Now, to set this up a bit, I had a whole laundry list of apprehensions about this night out; some based on the music, some based on my personal life, some just fucking stupid and not based on much of anything. I won't go into details because you probably don't give a shit, but suffice to say that I was not exactly excited about what tonight had in store for me. Hopeful, and more than a little curious on all fronts? Sure. But excited? Not so much.
So anyway, I show up, and apparently because of the long bill (there are six bands playing) I've already missed the first act (Berkeley to D.C.) even though I only showed up fifteen minutes after the doors opened. What the fuck, right? So I go to take a piss and when I come out my friends have shown up. Cool beans, let's enjoy the show.
We go over to the stage and some band that I later discover is called Party Like Summer is setting up their shit (and being kinda obnoxious with the mic testing, but what else is new). They start into their set and I realize two things about them. One, they're a generic pop-punk band with a singer who is convinced he's the next Roger Daltrey, despite the fact that half the time when he swings the mic around he can't actually, ya know, CATCH IT. Two, I like them. Their set is definitely fun, and they're the kind of energetic opener who gets the crowd riled up for the rest of the night. At this point I'm thinking "well, so far so good". But I am the furthest thing from prepared for what's next.
The next band starts then setting up their, erm, equipment. I say this because the first thing they cart out onto the stage is a metal trash can filled with umbrellas and a large wooden stick. "What the hell is that?", I ask, and nobody seems to know what exactly is going on, because they then proceed to bring out giant stuffed animals, a foam microphone with its stand wrapped in flowers, and a drumkit that seems to be some strange combination of legitimate drums and trash can lids. Then one by one the band starts to stroll out onto the stage. One of them (the keyboardist) is standing there with a notepad, drawing caricatures of people in the crowd and then passing them out. One of them is an afro'd dude in boxers and a dirty shirt that has "YOU LOOK REALLY GREAT RIGHT NOW" (or something to that effect) written on it in sharpie, who my friend said looked like he had rolled out of bed in the morning and said "I'm ready for the show!"; I think she was being a bit generous with that estimation. I'd say he looked more like he'd rolled out of the tour van about ten minutes previously and mumbled something about not knowing where he was. But he's not even the most unusual of the bunch; the lead vocalist comes out wearing a flowery orange dress (he's a dude). My thoughts are something along the lines of "this is really...weird."
Things had not yet even begun to get weird.
Now, to be perfectly honest, I'm not so sure about the sequence of events that transpired after that, but I'll do the best I can to recount them. This is a good time to mention that I didn't actually take that picture up at the top, nor is it from this show. In retrospect, I wish I had taken some (read: many) pictures, but I was a little busy being...let's see, how can I put this delicately...COMPLTELY FUCKING OVERWHELMED by the sheer volume of ridiculous and insane shit going on around me.
They start out the show by putting up a quote on a sheet at the back of the stage, a quote which I can only vaguely remember was inspirational in some way (because that really narrows it down, right?). The guy in the dress gets up to the front and says something about happiness and love or something. And this is where my memory becomes really fuzzy, because the rest of their set (ten minutes? thirty? six hours?) was just a huge fucking blur of excitement and dancing and singing and jumping and holy-shit-what-the-hell-is-going-on-this-is-fucking-incredible.
Here's what I know. The singer had jumped off the stage within probably thirty seconds of them starting to perform, and was running throughout the crowd, singing and jumping and getting everybody moving. To replace him on the stage was another vocalist; this vocalist was wearing outer-space pajamas and at one point put on a mask; this vocalist also did not have a microphone. Rather, he had some object shaped like a microphone that whirled around a lot of colors and lights, which he sang into with all his heart. The thing actually turned itself off at some point, and despite his frustration that his flashy light thingy was not doing what it was supposed to, he kept singing away into his broken not-microphone. Now that's dedication.
This is probably the point where large stuffed hearts started being tossed in around the crowd like beach balls. This is also the point where the first singer (the dress guy) said he was going for a magic carpet ride; what this meant was he threw a rug onto the crowd and laid down on it, while we in the audience gave him his magic carpet ride, before dumping him back on the stage in a heap. He also crowd surfed the more traditional way later in the show (still in the dress, of course).
A bit later after that, he was back in the crowd and was doing all sorts of crazy ass dance shit. He had everyone in the crowd form a circle around him (I think he called it the mirror-circle). He would do a move, which we would then imitate; he would pick someone from the circle, drag them into the middle, and they would then make up a move which the rest of us (dress dude included) would imitate. Then that person would pick someone, and that person, etc. etc. We danced like were were at a crunk rap show, we danced like we were at a rave, we danced like we were in a one-person moshpit, we even did the fucking robot.
Eventually he made his way back to the stage; he put a lamp shade on his head, got a massive rainbow-colored umbrella, and then walked around the crowd again singing from under said umbrella and lamp shade. He had everyone put a hand into the area under the umbrella, and we all said in unison (twice) "Five, six, seven, eight, who do we appreciate? MUSIC! MUSIC! GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO MUSIC!" before throwing our hands into the air and screaming like we'd just won the fucking Super Bowl.
And now, I shall describe the events that I cannot place in sequence, but that I know occurred.
The vocalist with a not-microphone was stripping off his pajamas on stage. The vocalist with the dress instructed us multiple times to put our "spirit fingers" in the air (meaning hold our hands toward him and waggle our fingers). We were told to throw up our rap hands, which we of course did. We were told many, many times to jump up and down (I think I drained myself of about a gallon and a half of sweat throughout the set; I could have rung out my hair like a wet dog afterward). At some point, someone got into a giant banana costume and started running around the crowd. I did not see him get into this costume, and I did not see him get out of this costume. I don't even know if he was in the band. All I know is that suddenly there was a banana-man jumping up and down next to me, and then shortly after that there was not (I'm going to have to check with my friend to make sure I didn't hallucinate that guy). There were signs held up to remind us that it was, in fact, 'The Party Zone'. There was someone (again, not sure who) sitting on the front of the stage while holding a cutout of a cloud in front of his face, while the guy with the umbrella stood over him and sang. And at at least one point in the set, unicorns became involved; to what capacity, I am not entirely certain. But there were unicorns.
Near the end of the show we were all shouting in unison "I AM NOT A HUUUUMAN A-NY-MORE! I AM NOT A HUUUUMAN A-NY-MORE!", and I think that perfectly sums up how I (and everyone else in the crowd) felt at that moment. To call this show awesome, incredible, amazing, and glorious would be the understatement of the century. The quote in the title of this post is something my friend said after the show, when she was telling us that any attempts to describe what we'd seen would result in people thinking we'd had LSD injected directly into our brains (I'm paraphrasing a bit), and I think that's true, but I hope I've given you some small idea of what the show was like.
Sorry, Electric Six. Sorry, Nine Inch Nails. Sorry, Flaming Lips (seriously; they topped 'em). Peachcake is my new favorite live band, and they fucking earned it. I have never seen anything even remotely like what I witnessed tonight, and something tells me I never will (except when I see Peachcake again, which I WILL be doing at every possible opportunity). I almost feel like they've spoiled live music for me. Never mind that I'd never heard of them before. Never mind that they were fourth on a bill of six bands. Never mind that I am certain their recorded music will pale in comparison to what I heard tonight. Peachcake is absolutely fucking incredible, and I urge everyone to find out if they're playing a show anywhere even close to wherever you live, because you need to see this fucking band. I say again:
SEE. THIS. FUCKING. BAND.
They're playing four shows in Texas at the end of August, and I am more than a little tempted to spend a week following this band around. I might just fucking do it. That's how psyched I am about what just went down tonight.
I guess I should at least mention the bands that played after them, although really, there isn't much point. The vocalist for the band after Peachcake said, before they did anything, "what I just saw...was epic", and everyone in that fucking club agreed with him 150%. The next three bands were good (although PRP!, despite being the headliner, was the lamest set of the night), but it's like, what's the point? If it could have been put to a vote of the crowd, and we were given the options "see these other three bands" or "see Peachcake play until the fucking sun comes up", I know exactly which way it would have gone. And not a goddamn person would have left before it ended.
I would say "believe the hype", but there is apparently not any hype around this band (a fact which, quite simply, blows my fucking mind). So fuck the hype. Believe ME. This band takes the idea of live music totally above and beyond any other group I've ever encountered, or even heard about. It was like a goddamn circus set to music, where everyone in the crowd was simultaneously under the spotlight and up in the stands screaming their head off (people don't scream at circuses, but come on, I'm trying to keep the metaphor rolling). They took my night out, a night filled with apprehensions and doubts, and turned it into one of the best nights of my fucking life. So let me say, one last time, to drive home the point: SEE THIS FUCKING BAND. If it's not the best concert you've ever seen in your entire life, I will drive myself to your house, no matter the distance, and let you punch me in the face. I am dead fucking serious.