Thursday, July 11, 2024

Live Shows: Gut Health, Tetchy, and PV, Ralph's Rock Diner, Worcester, MA 7/9/24

Outdoor shows are great, but they do have their issues, mainly weather. I had been planning on seeing Gut Health, Tetchy, and PV on the patio at Ralph's in Worcester Tuesday night, but as I was getting set to leave, there was a downpour at my house. I kept checking weather reports for Worcester, which kept saying there was a roughly fifty percent chance of rain. I decided to risk it, and luckily it all worked out.

PV opened up the evening's music, and I'm not really quite sure how to explain them. Every time I thought I knew what they were as a band, they changed it up completely. It started off as pure art rock noise, with a violin being used as a noise instrument. From there, they morphed into an instrumental quartet. It was a bit more straightforward rock, but still with an art/noise sound. Then, they started adding some vocals. It was still rock based, but maybe now with a little more punk thrown in. PV are the type of band music writers are going to hate because they don't fit neatly in any box... or two... or even three. Since I love barely contained chaos in my music, they're a band that worked perfectly for me.

Tetchy played next, just as a very light rain began to fall. This was the Brooklyn band's final stop on their tour, and I was thrilled to get to see them. Samantha from Tysk Tysk Task suggested I check them out before the two bands played together last Saturday night in Lowell, and I was immediately hooked after checking out All In My Head from earlier this year. Their Instagram describes them as "very very loud and very very quiet" which is perfect. Tuesday night the band went from the scream filled near metal song "Married" into what was one of the most quiet songs I've ever seen performed live. Their songs fling themselves from a more punk/metal/hardcore style into alt-pop, twee, emo, and singer-songwriter, sometimes in the same song. Singer/guitarist Maggie Denning is an absolute revelation live, and is now one of my favorite frontpeople. Denning went from a shy, introspective singer to throwing herself off the stage and stalking the entire patio at Ralph's with ease. Next time Tenchy rolls through New England, I'll be attending every show of theirs that I'm able to.

Worcester's own Gut Health closed out the patio. They've been on my list of local artists I've been dying to see, and their live show did not disappoint. They have a post-hardcore sound that's similar to At the Drive In's, but more pop and more punk at the same time. Plus, their live show was for more theatrical than I ever could expected, and involved wacky arm waving inflatable tube men, streamers, a toilet paper gun, and signs thrown into the crowd displaying pro-Gut Health slogans as well as inspirational ones. Oh, and there was a mannequin being bandied about the crowd, but that could have originated in the audience. Post-hardcore and art rock are both genres that can take themselves a bit too seriously, and it was refreshing to see a band like Gut Health rock out and make their show fun. Plus, songs like "Conversation Lost" are just begging to be heard in a live setting.

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