The Party’s Over Kids, Go Home
For those unfazed by the name, ma.gallery has been combining cool bands with cool art since 2009, usually resulting in raging parties and raging hangovers. Sadly though, the curtains have fallen on ma. and it’s debaucheries, and this hoorah was to be its last. On the bright side it’s probably a good thing for all the people who have fallen victim to its amalgamation of free drinks and live tattooing. A combination only for the brave (or stupid).
Personally, the ghosts of ma. parties past have endowed me with mixed feelings. I’ve had some of these events under my belt within the space of four years – and between ma.’s third and fourth birthdays my opinion soured. Although I can forgive the instance in which all my friends were violently ejected (I’m sure it was justified), on a separate occasion I was given surprise drugs in a cider and found myself (sans arm and leg function) unconscious in an alleyway. So ma.gallery, you dangerous wench, I am suspicious of your raucous ways.
However one thing impossible to fault with ma. events is it’s very fine choice of music. Consistently showcasing some of the best ‘Strayun bands and always with a great amount of psyche, garage, thrashabilly, punk, etc. This final foray was no exception, with an impressive selection from up and down the East Coast including The Pieter Van Den Hoogen Band, The Living Eyes, Whipped Cream Chargers, The Nugs, La Mancha Negra, Dead Farmers, Box Of Fuck, In Helvetica, and Los Tones.
Aside from having the best act name since Darth Vegas, The Pieter Van Den Hoogen Band were a pleasure to behold. Their set relocated the venue to Crazy Town; their dark and catchy punk performed with brimming energy. The eclectic wailing of The Pieter Van Den Hoogen Band vocalist was only eclipsed by his amazing outfit (pictured right). Garage rockers The Nugs and The Living Eyes likewise deserve props for slamming the crowd with on-form scuzzy surf/punk. Their big muffed guitars and heavy reverb suited the night’s vibe perfectly. I’d also like to thank the lovely lads from Whipped Cream Chargers (pictured above) for making high-quality dance-able music. They seemed to have an inexplicable crowd majority of righteous babes; and being surrounded by pretty girls gyrating is a-okay with me. The Chargers crashed through a couple of yet to be released tracks, giving reassurance that they can only continue up and up. The ripping 60’s nostalgic Monkey was particularly wild; compositionally so simple but ridiculously effective. Always a pleasure, gentlemen.
Other perks of the night were the prettily painted walls by artists Jumbo, Esjay, Bridge Stehli and Bennett, but to be honest attention to detail was impossible due to the sheer amount of people. However ma. made amends in free popcorn, which I was still picking out of my hair the next morning due to a shameful drunken food fight.
It’s been a wild ride ma.gallery, but your back-breaking parties will be missed indeed. One can only hope that we find another collective of bookers to do what you did before; put on hell-raising rock and roll under the guise of a sophisticated gallery event. Goodnight ma.gallery, maybe we’ll see fewer regrettable tattoos from now on.
Words by Bianca Cornale.