August 13, 2014
Usually when a singer stage dives into the crowd and surfs on their back while playing their instrument, it's a show highlight. For Le Butcherettes, who opened for Mars Volta spin-off band Antemasque last night, it was just the beginning.
Since forming in 2007, Le Butcherettes have become notorious for their borderline-insane on-stage antics. Raw meat, fake blood, and 1950s housewife attire have been staples of the Mexican garage punk band's performances, led by frontwoman Teri Suarez, who's even been known to violently cut her own hair while playing.
She recently began to distance herself from her gory Teri Gender Bender persona, so, on the heels of the act's new album Cry Is For the Flies, it wasn't clear what the show last night would entail.
Things got started in a hurry. Lia Braswell, who is the touring drummer with Gothic Tropic and Suarez's new group member, burst out of the gate with a furious drum line.
Suarez, donned in a bloodied apron and kitten heels, shouted: “Take my fucking dress off!”
Suarez took off her shoe while playing the keyboard and began rubbing it on her head, leaving it caught in her hair as she picked up her guitar and kept on playing.
As she scanned the crowd during “I'm Getting Sick of You,” there was a moment we locked eyes. I was genuinely frightened.
Of course, we don't know each other, and there was no reason for me to think she was singing directly at me. But that's how it felt, and it chilled me to my core.
So yeah, it was cool. But the only problem was that the crowd clearly wasn't there to see Le Butcherettes. They were the opening act, so that makes a certain sense, but it was disappointing.
Throughout the show, nobody was moving, just staring in astonishment as Suarez hopped around the stage like an injured rabbit, stiffly jilting her arms, chanting like an ape. Braswell, wide-mouthed, grinned through her teeth.
A couple guys sarcastically raised metal horns, obviously uncomfortable with the exorcism occurring in front of them.
Then Suarez was giggling, saying “Muchas gracias!” to the crowd with a gigantic smile. “She's so cute!” said someone. In a strange way, she was. I wanted to hug her, even though a minute before I worried she'd leap off the stage and strangle me.
Equally seductive and terrifying. That's Le Butcherettes.
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