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Type O Negative - October 29, 2007 - Irving Plaza, New York, NY

By: Christa Titus

You can’t get much more New Yawk City local than having Type O Negative play one of its boroughs, unless the gig is in Brooklyn and you’re topping it off with cans of Thursday-night Pabst Blue Ribbons. We had to settle for the Irving Plaza in Manhattan and $8 cocktails, but at least we spied the brooding foursome from the VIP section mere days before Halloween, so we’ll say we broke even.

Upping the room’s ghoulish spirits was supporting act Lordi, the Finnish band that has been proving one show at a time that costume rockers can still prevail in the states if they peddle a decent set of tunes. The crew looked like creatures that had stepped off the Universal Studios movie lot, except for their massive platform boots. Giving them additional cred was Twisted Sister’s Jay Jay French briefly joining in Lordi’s set for a whine-filled guitar solo. (Considering TS’s success with last year’s “A Twisted Christmas” albums it looks like holidays are the band’s new prime time spotlight.)

Maybe it was the hometown advantage, or the fact that autumn is Type O’s patron season, but for the first time since we’ve seen the professional brooders, they behaved more caffeinated than codeined under their emerald green spotlights. True, a band can only get so animated when it’s purging itself of a wonderful droner like “World Coming Down.” We’re also used to seeing the foursome cram onto a miniscule stage like the long-departed Lamour. Yet bassist/singer Peter Steele—sporting a priest’s collared shirt and his ever-ready bottles of wine as onstage refreshment—had his typical game face of misery cracked by more smiles than usual. Johnny Kelly is the busiest player by default, whereas guitarist Kenny Hickey thrashed about with such fervor you wondered if he remembered which band he was playing in.

This evening, “Wolf Moon” much more vivacious than its recorded version, if a ritualistic fable about eternal love, menses and zoanthropy could ever be considered as such. “Kill All the White People” gave the band plenty of berth to kick around its punk roots, “Christian Woman” featured tight vocals and “Black No. 1 (Little Miss Scare All)” was one of several opportunities for the crowd to shout along to the choruses. That prompted one of Steele’s personal blessings: “Shut up, this is my part . . . OK then, go ahead, this is your big chance . . . And you say we suck!”

Between the towering singer’s expected comedic litany of fuck-yous and shut-the-fuck-ups and the room’s cheerful chants of “You suck!,” the love in the room was palatable. It reached its crescendo with the perfect encore of “Unsuccessfully Coping With The Natural Beauty Of Infidelity,” where everyone shouted the immortal lyrics of “Slut! . . . Whore! . . . Cunt!” and “He knows your fuckin’ someone else!” with drunken frat-house glee. Talk about “Halloween In Heaven” for Type O fans, indeed.


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