It had been a good long while since I had seen Dastardly and Chaperone perform on the same stage. The last time was at South By Southwest back in March, and they played four or five hours apart. They’ve done a couple shows together between now and then (I think) but nothing I could get to. So, when the show was announced, I was a little heartbroken because I already bought tickets to see Michael Ian Black on the fifth of November. No way I’d be able to do both.
Then, a miracle happened. Michael Ian Black came out just a few minutes after eight o’clock to start his set, meaning there was no opener. Even with his hilarious comedy taking us up to about nine thirty, we still had plenty of time to make it to Beat Kitchen and see both bands sets.
Dastardly played a lot of newer stuff, and it sounded pretty awesome. Their new album, Bury Me In The Country, is gonna be available in January, and it seems to be wildly different from May You Never. The new songs sound like nothing I’ve heard before, mixing country, jazz, and psychedelia together to form some experimental new thing (I’m gonna call it “acid country”).
The highlight of their set, for me, was a song called “Mama I’m Feeling Evil.” After the number, Gabe called it “That one song that’s boring as hell until the horns come in.” He’s only half right on that one. The first half of the song isn’t boring, it’s just deliberate in its pacing because it has to build up to this explosion of sound. Joe Rauen gets pretty freaky with the clarinet, like Anchorman’s Ron Burgundy on jazz flute absurd. He just wails unrelentingly. It was during this song that I realized I wasn’t at a rock concert anymore, but a free form jazz show with more obvious dick jokes.
They played four or five other new songs, a couple of which I’d heard already. The crowd-pleasing singalong “Jews Don’t Go To Heaven” is always a treat, and the closing song “Dirt Nap” was just flat out crazy. More Cannibal Corpse than Merle Haggard. Definitely a fun one to watch, but not something I’m hoping for a lot of on the new album.
Chaperone came to the stage and delivered a blistering set of songs that I’ve come to know as hits. Every time I see them play I think, “When is this song gonna be put on a record.” Of course, they just released the 7″ single “Raised By Wolves,” which also features “O Ye Drowning Children.” But songs like “Son Of Love Control,” “Vasser Kinder,” and “Jungle Warrior” are begging to be laid down on wax.
The set was fast and furious. Filled with rocking tunes and jokes about supposedly obscure pop icons. I enjoy the revolving frontman style that the live show has. Shaun sings lead on most of the songs, but Shaylah and Miles get their time as well. Mark Sheridan, ever the dark shadow in the back, gets his moment in the spotlight when they play the song that he wrote. That one includes one of my new favorite things to yell, “Take off your fancy hat!” It’s just funny to me for some reason.
During the final song of Chaperone’s set, the male members of Dastardly ran up to the front and began dancing uncontrollably. I couldn’t help but join in. The song ended and Gabe started screaming for a “Shaun-core.” The band obliged, and played another scorcher. This is precisely the reason I love seeing these two bands play together. Their mutual admiration and love for each other is undeniable. I wish more bands in Chicago and around the globe had this kind of enthusiasm for their fellow groups.
If you’d like to see some photos from the night, check out Kari’s albums for each band:
I’m totally cheating with these videos. I didn’t have my camera with me at Beat Kitchen this time, but these are both newer songs from both bands that I’ve recorded at some point. The video above is Chaperone playing “Son Of Love Control at Beat Kitchen a couple months ago. The one below is Dastardly playing “Freight Train” at Schubas in June.