It would be hard to match the sheer joy of this particular night. The crowd sparkled with sweaty chests and the spray of beer in the air. All bands embodied fun with unbridled enthusiasm, shameless in their antics and lyrics. After a solid set by Vicious Cycles, the Evaporators showed their usual panache with a full set of props and costumes, theatrics and antics. Nardwuar leapt into the crowd with frenetic maracas, then passed them off to an eager young attendee. The audience, wide-eyed and ready for anything, followed his cues, crouching down and popping up like a collective jack-in-the-box. In climax, Nardwuar donned a Canadian flag helmet and dove excitedly off the stage.
Andrew W.K. continued to fuel this energy, albeit with a younger and predominantly male crowd. A pervasive mildew smell originated from sweaty young men, Pabst beer droplets that misted the air and a flood the Biltmore had earlier that afternoon. Andrew W.K. gave the crowd exactly what was expected—an excuse to flail, spray beer, and yell, “It’s time to party!” The bliss of the audience was palpable, and shirts were shed.
Andrew W.K., famous for partying and writing songs about partying, was indeed one big walking party. Lyrical highlights included “Let’s get a party going” (from “Party Hard) and “we want to have fun and we want to get wasted” (from “We Want Fun”).
Audience members were catapulted onto the stage, toppling equipment and grabbing hold of anything to slow their trajectory. Though Andrew W.K.’s voice boomed through the PA, it was impossible to spot him in the mess of churning bodies. The Evaporators/Andrew W.K. finale was delayed by trashed equipment—half an hour later, the evening came to a close with Wimpy from the Subhumans making a guest appearance. All this was in the name of recently released split 7” by W.K. and the Evaporators A Wild Pear. Give it a listen!