Punknews.org

The Briefs / the Punk Group

The Briefs / the Punk Group: live in Portlandlive in Portland (2006)
BYO Records

Reviewer Rating: 4


Contributed by: colincolin
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Sometimes I kick myself for being behind the times on really good bands. I hadn't heard the Briefs until the other day when I saw they were coming to town, and after reading up on a couple reviews on Punknews and downloading some MP3s, I was hooked. For five bucks at a venue two blocks away, I could.


Sometimes I kick myself for being behind the times on really good bands. I hadn't heard the Briefs until the other day when I saw they were coming to town, and after reading up on a couple reviews on Punknews and downloading some MP3s, I was hooked. For five bucks at a venue two blocks away, I couldn't complain at all.

The doors for the show were at 8:30 and the show was technically supposed to start at 9:30, but the first band didn't go on until 10:30. The first band was...the Konami Defense System. Let me paint you a picture of this one: Four kids get on stage, all look under the 21 years you had to be to get into the show. One picks up a keytar. Yes, a keytar. Another gets behind a keyboard. The lead singer is wearing a shirt that says "All Your Base Are Belong To Us." (For those of you out of the internet fad loop, that was a huge flash animated video from maybe 2001.)

So the Defense System plays songs that remind me sort of like Neon Blonde, but with more Blood Brothers in the vocals and more Devo in the music (if that makes any sense). You can listen to some tunes on their Myspace page and just imagine that but a lot louder. The lead singer took his on-stage antics directly from the book of Geoff of Thursday, and it's quite hard to not laugh at a band whose lead keytarist holds the instrument up in the air and makes that "I'm doing such a killer solo" face while he keys the last two notes on the thing over and over. Lots of screaming vocals and I'm sure they all had to do with the heartbreak Mario must have faced when Princess Toadstool kept making him dodge turtles and goombas for her, but I guess that's just the way life goes sometimes.

Next up was another local group, the Punk Group. It's really hard to describe the awesomeness this band contained as far as a live show goes. If you listen to their music (streaming audio available on their site), it's two guys and a synth / non-drummer. They play in the style of old punk but the lyrics are just very straightforward, generally one or two lines per song. They each had white sunglasses on for the entire set, and remained perfectly expressionless the entire time. I'd never heard them before, and so it was just sort of a treat to see a band that took themselves just seriously enough to be funny, but not seriously enough to be pretentious or idiotic. And songs like "Fat Girls on Bicycles," "Toby Keith," and "F-U-C-K-Y-O-U" just keep you laughing, repetetive as they are.

Next up was the Briefs, and they put on a hell of a live show. Again, I wasn't familiar with the material, but I picked up a copy of Sex Objects after the show, and even the sound they have on CD doesn't compare to the live show. This stuff was as fast and furious, Paul Walker style. They commanded the relatively small stage, rarely stopping through the unfortunately short set. While they only played for 40 minutes, they squeezed in quite a few gems, never letting up and providing more energy on stage than the drunk crowd on the floor, all sort of awkwardly jumping around and crashing into things.

So, if you're a fan of good old fast punk rock, check out the Briefs on tour if you can. As with every live show, I've gotta find something to complain about, so how about $4.50 for a screwdriver? I mean, it was a $5 show, and for the gasoline they passed off as house vodka you can buy a good half gallon of it for the $5.50 I ended up giving the bartender for a single drink. I know it's even worse in major metropolitan areas, but it seemed a bit lame.

Anyway, Konami Defense System gets 5/10 for trying and being relatively entertaining, Punk Group 8/10 and the Briefs a solid 10, and I have no clue what that averages out to, but I'll give the show an 8 for kicks.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
forgetters - forgettersBright Eyes - Noise FloorBrand New - The Devil and God Are Raging Inside MePlanes Mistaken for Stars - MercyLife at These Speeds - To Your HealthDesaparecidos - Read Music / Speak SpanishLife at These Speeds - Life at These Speeds [reissue]I Would Set Myself on Fire for You - Believes in PatternsWaxwing - One for the RideBoy Sets Fire - The Misery Index: Notes from the Plague Years

Please login or register to post comments.What are the benefits of having a Punknews.org account?
  • Share your opinion by posting comments on the stories that interest you
  • Rate music and bands and help shape the weekly top ten
  • Let Punknews.org use your ratings to help you find bands and albums you might like
  • Customize features on the site to get the news the way you want.
Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (May 10, 2006)

ok so i'm the lead singer from 'konami defense system"... no "the".... just correcting a couple things... first.... we're all over 25 years old... yup.

and "all your base are belong to us" is a bad translation from an old video game on sega master system called "zero wing"... the internet flash cartoon was done later.

i asume who-ever wrote this review didn't get our sense of humor... but eh... i can asure you we don't take our 'check out my sweet keytar solo" antics seriously :) who the hell could... its a KEYTAR for fucks sake! KEYTARRR !!! *does metal fingers*

please e-mail me at "konamidefense@yahoo.com" if you want to know more about what the hell is going on !!

ps - coke is too 'spensive

tylerdurden8136 (March 31, 2006)

go kill yourself, colin.

TheNightProwler (January 14, 2006)

Mr. Brett did a lot of coke back in the day...

Anonymous (January 12, 2006)

Yeah, if the majority of coke addicts started awesome bands, it'd be another story... Almost ever cokehead I know of, though, does absolutely nothing besides pose at shows and get fucked up.

-Will

the_other_scott (January 12, 2006)

um will. hate to burst your bubble. but just about every band you like had at least 2 members in it that either tried or did lots and lots of cocaine.

Anonymous (January 11, 2006)

Fucking haters. Coke is awesome. Especially that new Coke with Lime.

Anonymous (January 11, 2006)

Cocaine sucks. It's really big in KC with certain people my age (18)... That self-induced temporary happiness thing is seriously white trash lame, and I'd wager to say that anyone stupid enough to even try such an addictive substance would have to be an idiot (at least at the time). Cokehead indie punk hipsters, please leave hedonism to the ravers.

The funny part is that it's a bunch of middle class assholes being exactly what they're rebelling against... I can't think of a greater example of wasteful, destructive decadence than cocaine. What are they trying to escape from? Their trust funds?

-Will

Anonymous (January 11, 2006)

"I checked out the Punk Group's website. Doofus hipster shit. Complete with doofus hipster dipshit uniforms."

Hipsters would be too cool to do something that stupid. Besides, any band that has Multnomah County's head coroner in it is fine by me.

Anonymous (January 11, 2006)

The Angry Samoans cover was 'Todd Killings'.

colin (January 11, 2006)

O rly is the coolest fad ever.

o rly?

sirens (January 11, 2006)

O rly is the coolest fad ever.

colin (January 10, 2006)

the venue was dantes, it wasn't much of a venue, it's like a bar and some tables and an extremely small floor area just infront of a stage.

as far as portland goes i don't mind it but then again i'm not coked out or on smack but there are plenty of those types. it's a pretty rad town.

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

The lead singer is wearing a shirt that says "All Your Base Are Belong To Us." (For those of you out of the internet fad loop, that was a huge flash animated video from maybe 2001.)

O rly?

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

Yeah I live in the suburbs where there's a meth lab like every five houses. It's pretty bad. But the all stupid Portland hipster kids prefer to spend their allowances on coke. Instead, they should use the money their parents gave them to buy better bicycles capable of taking them anywhere else but here. It's strange because for a bunch of coked out twenty somethings, they sure aren't very talkative when it comes to strangers, which is fine by me. When I hear about how "cool" Portland is in zines and stuff it makes me cringe 'cause all I can think about is the hordes of sweater wearing dipshits riding into town on the waves of gentrification.

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

what angry samoans song do they cover? ive just seen them do 'first time' by the boys

sickboi (January 10, 2006)

I bet its all the smack. I hear the junk is all the rage our there.

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

Dude, sickboi, just about everything from Portland is hipster shit. I fucking hate it.

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

What venue was this at?

gladimnotemo (January 10, 2006)

40 minutes is a long set.

sickboi (January 10, 2006)

I checked out the Punk Group's website. Doofus hipster shit. Complete with doofus hipster dipshit uniforms.

If I want some electronic music in my punk, I'll listen to VCR.

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

I saw this same show, but wasn't into 'The Punk Group' they were entertaining and funny at first, but repeating the same two lines for every song got old after a few songs. You should have gone over to the free show at Food Hole. A band called Mondo Hollywood played and they were way better than them.

As for the Briefs, they were awesome. They played a little from every album and I was surprised at the pace they played. Little or no stage banter between songs, just kept playing right into the next song. Not to mention the Angry Samoans cover at the end.

I also got to see a really drunk guy get knocked over a table by a girl because he kept bugging her. They kicked him out without his shirt on. Funny stuff.

And I agree with you about the shitty drinks there.

ElVaquero (January 10, 2006)

It's been a long time since I've seen a show in Portland (i'm here now!) but this sounds like a good time.

SalsaShark (January 10, 2006)

I want to see the Briefs so incredibly bad. I hope they tour soon. I've become a big fan recently.

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

the punk group,from the few songs i listened to sound JUST like devo.which isnt really bad. ill admit the "myspace is good for getting laid" song made me smile a little.

and the briefs are totally sweet live.

Anonymous (January 10, 2006)

i'm really not a fan of the briefs. granted, i haven't heard much by them, but i still don't understand what the fuss is all about.

Exclusive Streams

Sponsored


Newest Reviews

Punknews.org Team

Other Places to Go