Gay Witch Abortion

SXSW showcase reviews

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Photo by John Anderson

Gay Witch Abortion

Soho Lounge, Friday, March 19

If you're going to be in a metallic twopiece, you either need to go massive or go home. Fortunately for Minneapolis' Gay Witch Abortion, they bludgeon like Black Sabbath – if Bill Ward and Tony Iommi had sacked Ozzy and Geezer and started listening to experimental jazz. "Girl Pop Soda" comes on like a Russian Circles-style drone as Jesse Bottomley's distorted guitar pulses hypnotic over Shawn Walker's spasm drums. Neither man is big on talking to the audience, many of whom admitted to coming out of curiosity about the ridiculously eye-catching name. The duo's also far from imposing, looking like a couple of computer engineers and restricting their banter to some off-mic shared jokes. Yet the sheer big-bastard-riff power of "Third World Limo" left post-rock jaws on the floor, while the apocalyptic blues of "Scythian Skulls" should make the band a must-invite next time Josh Homme thinks about organizing another one of his Desert Sessions. The late arrival at the venue of Arizona's Hemoptysis and a crowd in uproar meant an unexpected encore of "Bilocate," a massive doomy sprawl that blasts them far past novelty name status.

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