Chrystal Rules The Roost
by Dardanelles, Flubug Staff
By now it should be obvious to all students of the Flubug music scene that Chrystal rules the roost. The undisputed “king pins” of The Ditch, Like Chrystal, swept aside all doubts Thursday night when they delivered a powerhouse performance to a roaring crowd.
From the first acerbic chords of “Cracklin’ Fire,” Chrystal and the boys roared through a ninety minute, two-set show that left the packed house howling for more. With a heavy-hitting rhythm section, fortified by Dr. Longsleves’ Dex Strongarm on congas and found percussion, Like Chrystal showed every attendee why they set the standard for “meth rock” in Flubug.
Chrystal Thompson was an absolute vision, bedecked in a torn “Use Me” t-shirt, BCOL sweat pants and ruby red sneakers. Her sidekick and KRAK co-host, Peppy White, matched her incredible energy with his own “high” spirits, exhorting his bandmates and crowd with windmill, Townsendesque chords and animated duck walks.
Their playlist was equally impressive. Chrystal’s staccato howls pierced a punchy version of “Glass Pipe Gigolo,” followed by a doleful version of The Nodders classic, “Is That the Couch?” For an encore, the crew was joined onstage by none other than Zbiggy Sawdust. Together, they brought the house down with a rousing rendition of Bowie’s “Queen Bitch.”
No one but Chrystal could pull that one off.
Breugel: Nothing Short of Bizarre
Breugel is simply bizarre. From their white painted faces to their blue tattooed eyelids… from the Breugel murals that hang behind them to the shop machinery they employ at every performance, Breugel has redefined the word “strange” in a community whose list of superlatives has been exhausted for decades.
The band’s samples, bass riffs, overdrive guitar and howling bassoon rev like an F-14 prepping for takeoff, then crest to a deafening wall of madness that envelope their fans like a Cat 5 Whirlygig, spitting on anyone foolish enough to define them.
But their sales aren’t hard to define.
Their latest CD, “Procession to Calvary” has been Number One of KRAK’s “Whack List” for almost a month. And the album, a homage to their native Flubug and a dirge for the collective cesspool they see as humanity east of Poison Wells, is one of their best. The opening track, “Requiem for the Octomom,” starts with a plaintive call for the summary execution of any woman who bears more than a single child (or a resemblance to Pat Benatar). “Hell ain’t for children! Hell is for you! Hell is our sawblade… cut you in two!”
But perhaps strangest of all is the band’s use of common machinery onstage to create crude Medieval implements. Machinery in counter-culture music is nothing new. Noise bands and other experimental outfits used common machinery quite regularly. What’s new is the fact that Breugel members actually craft tools while performing, many of which are cast into the crowd at a high rate of speed (while hot) in the hopes of locating their Messiah…
…a “futurist” they believe holds their collective reincarnated souls in limbo.
This belief that the band was whisked from their jobs as blacksmiths in thirteenth century London and dumped into twenty first century Flubug is central to their meteoric rise and has spawned a devoted of rabid followers who each hope to return with the group.
Unfortunately, this has also created something of a safety hazard at Breugel shows as misguided fans try to “catch” the hot flying metal chunks, thereby proving themselves as the band’s Messiah. It’s also led Flubug Police to cancel several gigs at The Ditch which lead to mini-riots outside the club.
If nothing else, Breugel remains one of the most interesting bands in the region. And in a town like Flubug, that’s saying a lot!