Electric Six came to St. Mary’s for World Carnival on Saturday, April 21. Opening for them was the Carpet House Band, who were, by far, better than the “headliner” that followed them around 9:30 p.m. I put “headliner” in quotation marks because I wonder how they got to the point to earn that title. Electric Six is made up of six members: Dick Valentine (the lead singer), Tait Nucleus? (yes, that is the name he goes by, question mark included – by the way, “tait” is apparently a small Australian marsupial that is about the size of a mouse and is also called a “noolbenger”), Johnny Na$hinal, The Colonel, Percussion World, and Smorgasbord. I do not understand motivations or reasons for these names (except Valentine’s, as his seems to be the only normal name), but there must have been some reason at the time that they were chosen. Maybe the names are among the reasons the band dropped off the map. That, and all of their songs seem to sound very similar.
True, Electric Six was famous at some point in time. However, that point has long since passed. In fact, the last big things they did were the videos “Danger! High Voltage” in 2002 and “Gay Bar” in 2003 (everything else they have done does not even seem to compare to these songs and their videos). These two songs were the only two songs I was looking forward to when they came to perform at St. Mary’s; I found the videos fascinating, and I wanted to see how they performed them live. I never got that far into the concert.
The videos are eccentric, and “Danger! High Voltage” gives the word “electric” a whole new meaning, with certain parts of the main actors (and of a stuffed moose) lighting up, throughout the song, at the words “high voltage.” In addition to this new meaning of “electric,” the main singer (Dick Valentine) is creepy and, as is put very accurately by the band’s website, strange, looking straight at the camera and giving the video’s viewers seductive looks. The other main actor in the music video is apparently an actress named Tina Kanarek, though when watching the video her gender can be legitimately debated. Overall, while the song itself is halfway decent, the video is overly – and extremely unnecessarily – sexual and creepy, despite it being called an “epic period piece” by the band’s website. If you are looking for something bizarre to watch, I highly recommend looking up this video on YouTube.
The video for “Gay Bar” was even stranger than “Danger! High Voltage,” a feat that I did not believe was possible. Not only is the song slightly mediocre (at best), but it does not make very much sense, everyone in the video is dressed as Abraham Lincoln. One might ask why, and my answer is that I have no idea. I do not know how President Lincoln is at relevant to this song. I also wonder how this video won Video of the Year honors. All I know is that Valentine was the only principle actor, and the other stand-ins who dressed as Lincoln, for the most part, did not have any idea what they were getting themselves into.
By the way, they said on Saturday night that they are from Washington, D.C.; they lied. They are actually from Detroit. And the band wasn’t really that interesting live–the best thing about the performance was Valentine’s red silk shirt.