EVENT REVIEW: Kreamy ‘Lectric Santa Jumps the Shark?

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I felt like an asshole last Saturday when I realized that I had missed the Kreamy ‘Lectric Santa/Cavity show in Miami the night before. Luckily for me KLS was playing two shows in South Florida: one at Churchill’s Pub on Friday in Miami and the second at Jump the Shark on Saturday in Ft. Lauderdale. I intended to go to the Miami show because the lineup was bitchin’ – Snakehole, Rat Bastard, Shark Valley Sisters and the reunion of a lifetime – Cavity. But no, I fucked up the days and had to go to the gig on Saturday at Jump the Shark. I had last seen KLS in 2001 before moving to Sarasota, Fl and it felt like a proper send-off  at the time – KLS was moving to California and I was moving in with my then girlfriend to Sarasota; it was an epic night. Fast forward 14 years and I’m going to see a band whose last LP, Operation Spacetime Cynderblock- 4 Riddles Of The Spheres, was my pick for album of year in 2009.

I was accompanied by my good friend Los Skull (of Cutler Ridge’s infamous punk band Knumbskulls and a huge KLS fan) as we walked into Jump the Shark, Party Flag had three songs left and were ending their set. As far as new bands go, Party Flag are not to be missed. I also learned that I had missed Steven Toth’s group Mr. Entertainment and the Pookiesmackers. Goddamnit how could I fuck this night up any more?!? Mr. E is one of those bands that I always seem to miss live. I highly recommend their latest outing Socialismo Americano.

My night did manage to get worse however as Dooms de Pop picked up their instruments. They were mildly put, atrocious. I gave them the two song challenge, that’s something I do when I’m not quite sure if I like a live band and give them the benefit of the doubt by watching them perform two songs. Needless to say they failed the ol’ true and tried test and I had to go get a drink. As the sounds of seals dying waned on and on one drink turned to five and Dooms de Pop wouldn’t stop playing. Then it hit me – they reminded me of a really, really bad version of Polaris. For those uninitiated in ’90s pop culture Polaris were the band that did the theme song Hey Sandy for the Nickelodeon’s cult classic television hit Pete & Pete. Dooms de Pop are like Polaris if Polaris had no arms and banged their instruments with their foreheads at 20 beats per minute.

Finally Robert Price, Priya Ray and company took the stage (or floor as is the case at Jump the Shark.) KLS is undeniably one of the most seminal musical acts to have come out of South Florida. Their sheer live shows are things of legend. To see this band play to 15 people including a drunken old LSD tripping asshole ruining the show for everyone was demeaning not only to the band but the handful of fans. I’m not sure where the finger should be pointed, the venue? The lack of a relatively decent sound system? The drunk asshole prancing around? I don’t know. But a band of KLS’s statue, one who holds people like Thurston Moore as fans deserve better than what Jump the Shark was providing. As far as KLS’s set went the band managed to play an above average show with what they had. It was obvious that they took the lackluster opportunity to perform a lot of new material which gave great promise for what’s to come from the band. KLS was in full form with a tighter rhythm section than I last remember all those years ago. But I’m kicking myself for missing the real show, the one in Miami. The one where where none of this B.S. would be considered acceptable. Jump the Shark you can do better than this.

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Chuck Livid

Chuck Livid hails from Miami, Florida. He did a zine in the '90s called Muddy Chaos and is best known for his work with independent music label Livid Records. Chuck lives in Boca Raton, Fl with his wife illustrator Helena Garcia and their son Nico. He founded TuffGnarl.com and hosts TuffGnarl.com's official music podcast - Another Music Podcast which is available on iTunes & Google Play

5 comments

  • Sounds like the writer wasn’t hugged enough as a child and lost his kitten. …I hope you find you kitty.

  • Hi Chuck-This is Robert of Kreamy ‘Lectric Santa- I greatly appreciate any press our old straggly azzes can get. Very sorry you missed the Churchill’s show but we enjoyed playing Jump the Shark equally. I have to say we did not have any issue w Garo or Jump the Shark. In the 90’s at Churchill’s we supported all the punk bands Dave Daniels would never book by playing with them, lending them gear, giving rides, let people stay at our place. In return we’d often have our stuff stolen or catch shit from clubs and other bands trashing other people’s gear. Very rarely has kudos been returned but we don’t care because “thank you’s” we’re not what we were looking for. Myself being very outspoken and trying to foster a DIY environment that allows the little guy or gal to have a voice is what we have always strived for and why I felt compelled to respond with such a long response. I should 1st mention Garo put his heart and soul into the space Jump the Shark and is a really nice, supportive guy dedicated to (like us, and often for no or marginal gain) create a viable DIY space for art and music. Jump the Sharks sound system is good. The room space is prone to reverb. Being the end of the night and wanting to play for at least 1/2 the remaining crowd, (I can rant on about people watching their friends band and leaving before the touring gimps but alas were an older band that allot of the youngins were unfamiliar with and a great deal of the oldies had kids and work the next day), we quickly setup and played. We were treated extremely well by Garo and the staff. Ft Lauderdale is extremely lucky to have a space and someone willing to offer such a space to the community. Most towns aren’t lucky enough to have anything like it.

    Concerning Dooms De Pop I found their musical approach was unique and inspired.

    When I seriously discovered music years ago what drew me into post punk, punk, art rock the most was it’s rebellion against conventional music (whilst still often retaining its relevant pop essence). Bands I then discovered like Gang of Four, Slits, Velvet Underground, Mothers of Invention, Gong, Faust and even the Ramones initially were taking chances.

    Dooms De pops guitarist, singer Garo, the guy who runs the DIY space Jump the Shark, told me the night we played that back in the day he was in a bunch of punk and ska bands and after seeing us was so impressed that he decided to think outside of the box and follow his own creative directions. That’s has to be one of the most inspiring and motivating things I heard all year. To me that’s the greatest compliment. K’LS has never been about taking the easy way out or pandering to cultural simplicity. We as a band love and are influenced by all kinds of music and I’d hope our dedication to spend more time and effort to create something new and trat everyone equally inspires fans, like Garo, to create their own unique and individualistic bands. A great deal of bands can enjoy a lot of acceptance and success pandering to what I see as societies acceptable of cookie cutter patterns (even punk rock is featured in car commercials) but personally I thought Garo’s guitar playing was impressive, songwritting quirky . The drummer and bassist were pretty talented as well. Sounding nothing like us despite being influenced by us. Closer akin to perhaps Dinosaur Jr

    I wish my ADHD would allow me to stay in one spot and comfortably watch all the bands sets but that’s one of my issues and hopefully not reflecting a disinterest in other peoples music. In the end what you said about us was very kind, flattering and generous and am really glad folks like our new songs but as far as Dooms De Pop and Jump the Shark I will have to say I beg to differ and that’s ok. I look as disagreement as a conversation opener rather than an argument and will state that we are thrilled for Ft Lauderdale that they have an amazing space like Jump the Shark for bands and artists to show what they have to offer. Oh and we also love dancing Rene. Strange sure, but we love strange things. With the exception of bumper stickers exclaiming Keep _______Weird

    Take care,

    Robert price

    • Robert,
      Thanks for the reply. I can tell you that the review has created a very interesting phenomenon which is extremely rare in today’s trolling internet society. I received no less than 8 private messages agreeing with my statements and further complaining about the gallery’s lack of cooling and other assorted issues. What I find awkward is that in the age of everyone complaining on Yelp, online forums and social media all communications were done via private messages with warnings of “be careful the owner is that band” or my personal favorite “the owner books his bands at a prime time slot for important shows.” I thank you for your honest reply, KLS has been an inspiration to me since the times of Miami’s Cheers but there’s an obvious disconnect IF important and active folks in Ft. Lauderdale’s scene (and they are) are contacting me with these types of warnings. I can respect and admire anyone who throws their money and time to establish a venue which celebrates the arts however that does not equal a “pass” on other things that may be lacking. As for Dooms de Pop I wholeheartedly disagree the are simply horrible.

      -Hope all is well and please keep doing what you do!
      -Chuck Livid

  • Karl Dumpster-Toit

    When I witnessed Rene’s semi-manic dancing, I immediately thought it would be great if the entire audience was doing the same thing. That didn’t happen of course, but the notion made me happy. Viva KLS!!

    • Sorry the guy annoyed the shit out of me. I got a message about how he stalked this person for a while which made me really uncomfortable.

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