LOCATION: Mercury Lounge, NY.NY
SUBJECT: Boss Hog
The week started in uncharted territory but ended in a warm bath of pure nostalgia. While Jon Spencer has remained active, it isn't until the last few years that his projects have seem carry a shadow of his original spark. Since he's on a roll, it was high time to bring that lifeblood back home to his wife, Christina Martinez, and their band Boss Hog. The interplay between Martinez on lead vocals and Jon as bandleader and hype man is ruthlessly effective.
This night, at the intimate Mercury Lougne, was a release part for their first new album in 17 years, Brood X. While it might not touch their peaks of the early 90s, it's far stickier than their last, the fun-but-forgettable White Out. At this point, it's seeming like Boss Hog will go down in history as another electrifying stage act who who were never quite captured on tape, in full. Stage craft and presence go a long way in winning back that teenage feeling missing on the records.
Martinez is purposefully sultry and threatening at once as she sneers and swaggers across the stage in a slinky dress topped at the shoulders in clutch of black feathers, less boa than mod-armor. Spencer knows to stay out of her way and keep the band in formation, barking responses on her command. It all rides atop the jagged propulsion of the rhythm section of Jens Jurgensen and longtime member Hollis Queens.
Seeing the show actually gave me a much greater appreciation for the new album going back to it (more than once) the next day. If only I could have caught them on the White Out tour too.
NOTES: Boss Hog; Surfbort
PRESENT: AMS; Jared E.