Acidy Peeping Tom are a plucky, young trio making their way around the scene. 趙小美 Zhao Xiao Mei takes on the challenging task of drums and lead vocals, while 從健 Cong Jian mans the bass and the mic, and 崢庭 Zheng Ting keeps busy with guitars and synth. Everybody's pulling double duty, so I can assume they're all fair-minded people.
But what would a band with such an odd name sound like? Clearly skilled at their instruments, Acidy Peeping Tom is a blend of upbeat alternative rock and punk. One of the more legible notes I scrawled in the dark was, "a poppy 5,6,7,8's," with some loud lalala's riding atop a powered-up walking bass line and precision guitar licks.
While I can't say their music is as unique as their name, it does have a feisty punch, and I feel this is a band with promise. What would help their performance is a less talk/dead space, more rock doctrine; plowing through their songs will prevent the good energy of their music from dissipating. The same, of course, could be said of many other bands, so it is unfair to single them out. But I think this band could make something special, so I offer my opinion in the spirit of constructive criticism.
Oh, and they do feature a fun logo.
Tainan's Long Hair Monster is out of the military and back on the prowl. How many bands has the army killed? Thankfully this is one that survived. The last time I saw them was also at Underworld (by the way, great to have shows back on the menu there!) for their EP release party (reviewed here). Armed with a new bass player, 小鬼 Xiao Gui, the Monster was ready, and so was I.
A classic, slow-riffing guitar began and then..! There it was! THAT VOICE!!! If you haven't heard it, I don't know what to say. Soft-spoken in conversation, guitarist 阿寶 Ah-Bao's singing is like shrapnel spraying across apocalyptic landscapes. I expect some people would abhor it, it is sooooo rough, but not me. I'm in love.
Playing a short set of old and new songs, Long Hair Monster seem heading in a slightly less-metal direction in favor of more of a hard rocking tone. And yes, there is a difference. Witness the harmonica and slower ballad-like numbers. It wasn't quite straight-up blues, but it seems Ah-Bao has gotten deeper into the roots of rock.
My favorite song was the last one before the encore, a darker, brooding piece. Be it fast or slow, Ah-Bao can make it work. He's a fun guitar player, complete with an awesome inventory of guitar faces. Which is more expressive, the notes he bends or the looks he creates? What is also nice is to experience a guitarist who doesn't take himself too seriously. How many others would dare to stop a song mid-solo so the band could whip out combs and run them through their hair?
The worst part of the night was the sparse turnout, but as we mentioned in our Scene Report, there was a lot of action around town on Saturday. Given the wealth of quality options, I don't think you could have made a bad choice. So for those who chose differently than I, my message to you is simple: Long Hair Monster rocks.