It’s amazing the lens you listen thru. I really want to go to Baltimore, Maryland in a couple weeks to see Half Japanese play, but I can’t because it’s on a Friday and I have to work that Friday and Saturday. Jad Fair and Co. are playing their only listed show on the planet with this band called Double Dagger at Ottobar. Lately, I’ve been listening to DD’s new album More. Since they are playing with Half Japanese, I’ve been listening to it as if I had Jad Fair’s ears. Are these three dudes worthy of opening for the mighty Half Japanese? My answer after a few listens is: yes.
The likenesses to Half Japanese are slim, but there. This band loves feedback and fuzz and thinks it makes great weird music. And it does. Double Dagger can do what Half Japanese is best at, explode from simplicity. Repeat shit. Stand on a riff or phrase for so long, watch it generates a life of its own. The lyrics are not as addictive as Half Japanese, but that’s like comparing a Diet Dr. Pepper to Heroin. (Does Diet Dr. Pepper have caffeine? Is that that how you spell caffeine?) The lead singer does have the trailing on and on lyric style and weirdo inflections down, which is a lot of fun. This pulls them up from the muck of really serious bands in this stupidly named genre post-punk. That’s where the similarities end. Really, Half Japanese is a hard band to compare a band to. There’s someone else out there. Ah, yes. Fugazi.
Almost every single time Double Dagger is mentioned in writing, this band Fugazi is mentioned. You may (should) know them. As I listen now thru a Fugazi lens, I’m not sure I’m so excited anymore. Ian MacKaye ears are hard to wear because when you put them on, you listen to everything and think, “Man, these guys are trying to be like me!” I can’t help but get that feeling now. And I hate comparing things to the past, especially a band like this that really does kick the shit out of most of the new shit being devoured out there. Hmm. It’s something to ponder. Classic rock can’t leave me alone. And by classic rock I mean the 80s to early 90s.
Let’s do an experiment.