South Florida sludge junkies and decibel devotees have been getting more than their fair share of prize offerings when it comes to recent shows. Between performances by genre definers EyeHateGod and Corrosion of Conformity, last Saturday’s Torche/Hawg Jaw show, and the hometown date with reanimated Miami legends Floor, you might think the area could use a small reprieve, even if just to allow Walgreens on Northeast Second Street to restock earplugs and Churchill’s Pub “parking attendants” to spend that dollar you paid them.
But you’d be wrong. The quest for tinnitus cannot be quelled in Miami. Accordingly, Speedfreak Productions has lined up yet another night of rumbling organs, perforated eardrums, and sweaty (slow) head-banging; the punishment this time around will be thanks to Weedeater, Cough, and ASG.
Headliner Weedeater hails from Wilmington, N.C., and brings with it a healthy dose of credibility by way of frontman and bass player “Dixie” Dave Collins, who formed the band as a side project after the dissolution of hallowed sludge-metal granddaddies Buzzov*en. A stoner-metal icon if there ever was one, Collins has been a part of such notable bands as Bongzilla, Sourvein, and Hail!Hornet. “Dixie” Dave also accidentally shot off his big toe while cleaning his “favorite” shotgun two years ago, an incident that held up for some time the recording of Weedeater’s most recent full-length. That album, the Steve Albini-produced Jason… the Dragon, finally came out on Southern Lord Records last year.
Jason showcases Weedeater’s signature churning and pulsating sound, with Dave “Shep” Shepherd’s Sabbath-inspired guitar work and Keith Kirkum’s violent drum ballistics melding seamlessly with Collins’ fuzz-riddled bass; Collins’ periodic howls, which sound something like Tom Waits doing his best King Diamond impression, punctuate the rowdy slime and grime.
In keeping with the show’s headliner and the trend of the area’s recent string of shows, the music of opener Cough sounds like a funeral dirge for the death of an entire planet. Louder than loud and in absolutely no hurry to get to the next chord, this band is the epitome of all that is doom. Cough also receives an honorable mention here for name-checking Miami’s Cavity as a major influence in its biography on the Relapse Records website. Will this be the show that finally levels poor old Churchill’s? Probably not, but I’d be sure to pack some diapers and earplugs either way, and maybe a hat to keep the punk-rock dust particles lining the ceiling from falling into your hair. Get there on time to catch local favorites Shroud Eater and Ether kick things off.
Where: Churchill’s Pub (5502 N.E. Second Ave., Miami)
When: 9 p.m. Saturday, April 14
– By David Von Bader