There's nothing like being eye-to-eye with a seven-member rock band that's playing to an elbow-to-elbow room in a bar that's older than your grandparents and as small as your first apartment. That was the visceral experience on tap Saturday at Palmer's Bar on the West Bank, where horny soul-rockers Chooglin' are playing a trio of Saturday gigs that winds down this upcoming weekend. This is one of the best chances to see one of the best live acts in town.
The band and bar staff were bragging about there being a new p.a. system, but honestly I didn't notice, what with the fact that I was standing within loogie-hawking distance of the trio of horn players and the heaviest drummer in town, Shawn Walker. Speaking of which: please, no one bother calling me today, it's pointless ("huh?!"). Male audience members who had to use the restroom a lot (Hamm's on tap...) had to sneak by hyper-rocking guitarist/co-vocalist Jesse Tomlinson without getting bowled over, since the bathroom door was right next to him. On the other side of "the stage" was a wall full of photos of all the dead Palmer's regulars, which lent a semi-creepy vibe to the gritty urban sounds of openers City on the Make (in the photo on the right). Next Saturday's show ($5) should be an especially wild one with Les Deaux Maggots and Hamburger Help Me (ex-F*** Knights).