“Beat us at Rock Paper Scissors at the door and you’ll get R10 off! You could buy a girl a drink with that money, or yourself a drink.”
It is Friday night at the Boh and the damage is R30. I won at Rock Paper Scissors meaning I only had to pay R20. R20 to see four local bands rocking it out on stage, what more could I ask for?
First up was fairly a new band to the Joburg scene, The Tazers. The Tazers are a psychedelic rock n’ roll band from the windy city of Port Elizabeth who are currently based in Johannesburg. They are 3 guys with a sweet, old school, blues influence to their tunes. For a band that I had never heard of they managed to pull quite a crowd and start the night off sprightly. The band currently has a monthly residency at a local event called The Indie Collective and we’re eager to see how they develop.
Hellcats were next to take over the stage. They’re a two piece band from Johannesburg that plays stripped down rock n’ roll with Warwick Rautenbach shredding the guitar while Alex Benigno pounds the drums and sings with vocals that will make you kiss your own wetness. Hellcats has this 60’s and 70’s sound to their music and have revelead that they are influenced by the likes Led Zeppelin, Motorhead and Jimi Hendrix. Being a two-piece it is difficult not to reference contemporaries such as The White Stripes and Black Keys. However, citing all these influencer diminishes the authenticity and rawness Hellcats. They are their own band on stage filling the stage with more presence and sound than we see from bigger bands – Alex’s hair is in a constant whirlwind when he’s not howling into the mic while Alex uses every corner of the stage grimacing as he made his lectric guitar squeal. More Hellcats please.
The Ts & Cs were next on the bill. They are a badass indie-crunch band based in Joburg with a unique blend of indie with crunchy and melodic guitars, edgy and locked in drumming and driving bass. They have supported some local legends like PLUSH and aKING on their most recent tour. It was the first time seeing them live and surely not the last. They covered the song “Are you gonna be my girl?” By JET which had the crowd dancing and singing along. The Ts & Cs are a talented band that will have you jumping up and down and even signing along to some of their songs in no time.
Gangsterdam, who was the final act for the evening, joined the stage and ended the night with a bang. The first time I heard about his group was at their album launch at Kitcheners during February. I was impressed then and the band continued in the same vain this night. They are four badass guys making badass music on stage. Their music is a cool progressive rock with an influence of pop and indie. They don’t take themselves too seriously and are all about having a good time on stage. The same is reflected in their recently release music for “Worked Up”.
“We get drunk for a music video. It all evolved from there” says Mike, guitarist and vocalist of Gangsterdam.
The new music video is loosely based on a Dune Rats video and was the brainchild of bassist, director, editor, P.I.M.P Dstyles. Gangsterdam had a budget of a few hundred rand which was enough to buy some cheap kitsch junk at China City and liquor. With a Facebook bio which lists interest in drinking on the porch, smoking weed on the porch, and girls on the porch; Gangsterdam is my kind of band.
“The video is basically just us being goofballs and having a good time. It captures the spirit and sound of the song pretty well, I guess you could describe it as organised chaos.” explains Rory Shein the guitarist of Gangsterdam.
The past few weeks have seen the Bohemian becoming its old self hosting some of the best emerging acts in our burgeoning indie/rock & roll scene. It’s an exciting time to discover local talent and ventures such as The Indie Collective and Pretty Rad keep it easy for us support local.