‘The other band died in a terrible crash, so you’re stuck with us. We will cover all their stuff, but first we are going to do our own material. We are Wise Blood and you might hate this!’
Not the most assuring introduction from Houston’s relatively unknown Christopher Laufman and his electronic/hip-hop/house project. The clean cut, whiteboy with a (blood?) splattered Hawaiian shirt was the last thing I expected based on the production and packaging of his ‘+’ EP. But that is where the deception ended, as Chris and his boys on the kit and keys shocked the small, unsuspecting crowd into dancing and doing their best to stay out of his way.
‘can’t explain why I shine and no one else shines’
STRT SRNS opened the show and although I am very familiar with the track, I just couldn’t get past the kid performing it. Even when he was close enough to smell his breath, shoving his mic into my face before moving on to the next victim, I couldn’t help but think the dark, black-and-white image in my head was still the real artist. This had to be some kind of joke. No joke though, this kid is for real. For someone who has released a whole 10 songs into the world via an EP and a few blogs, he has an ego that revivals his Dirty South brethren. B.I.G. E.G.O. proved to be literal when he hoisted himself back onstage and declared ‘I’m gonna fuck somebody here tonight’. It was only 15 minutes into the set and you couldn’t help but picture him in a penthouse suite surrounded by an entourage and bottles of Patron…transforming from Spicoli to Eminem in a matter of minutes.
Surveying the 50 or so people in the room provided a comedic array of confusion, disbelief and smiles. As disappointed as I was by the lack of knowledge, especially in a city such as San Francisco, it was amusing as hell to witness the terror in the faces of couples as he stood above them yelling…’loud bitches, loud bitches’.
Based on the small amount of material Wise Blood has released, he has been lumped in with the likes of Salem, Neon Indian and other ‘wave bands, but after witnessing his live performance, I consider him more a hip-hop artist. He is the 8-ball antithesis to Salem’s syrupy sedation. Even when his mic busted, he continued on like it was no big thang, acapella by request. Jumping off the speakers, the stage and audience members, Wise Blood is all up in your face and if you’re not careful, it could get messy. You can’t claim you weren’t warned by his parting words. ’ I want to have sex with all your faces’.