King Tuff serenaded his audience with some good old fashioned rock and roll on Wednesday night.
Shows at Baby’s are so effortlessly easy due to their decent happy hour until 8pm, $5 drafts coupled with a $7 burger/salad make your evening plans a no-brainer (you can also get a miller for $3 but really, that’s just an expensive water).
I’ve seen opening band, Honey, probably half a dozen times this year and if you haven’t seen their aggressive garage-psyche then you should attempt to rectify that at your nearest convenience.
Fletcher C Johnson never seems to get the plaudits he deserves for his pop-infused anthems. Why Messin’ Up My Mind isn’t a huge hit is beyond my understanding.
King Tuff kicks his set off with the title track from Black Moon Spell, and plays 10 of the 14 songs from the album over the course of the night. This might seem like a bold move to some but there’s definitely a thrill watching someone with that level of confidence in their latest material.
It’s obvious why that confidence is there, because Black Moon Spell is a wonderful don’t-give-a-fuck classic rock record. It has riffs, hooks, sludge and sugar all in equal amounts. On Headbanger, the lyrics swoon over a friend/lover’s record collection “you had Sabbath and Priest, and number of the beast, it was heavy metal perfection”, those aren’t bad namechecks for the record in general, though perhaps more accurate is Eddie’s Song, that is so gloriously Thin Lizzy-esque you could file it next to Jailbreak.
Audience members ignorant of the new material (the album has only been out a couple of weeks) were thrown a few older tunes and the crowd erupted during Freak When I’m Dead and the inevitable Bad Thing, which really is one of the best tunes of the last few years.
An encore of I Love You Ugly before launching into Alone and Stoned rounded off the evening. It was refreshing to hear universal enthusiasm for an encore for a change! The show did seem like a bit of a treat, with Baby’s capacity being less than his usual type of venue (which included a sold-out Bowery show the following day).
Black Moon Spell
Freak When I’m Dead
Staircase of Diamonds
Eyes of the Muse
Demon From Hell
I Love You Ugly
Alone and Stoned
Black Moon Spell is out now on Sub Pop.