Fourth on the bill for the third night of XX Merge at the Cat's Cradle was local quartet Polvo. They played an ear shredding set for a packed room. Folks seemed to eat it up, but the band personally were not able to win me over. They played a tight set though and were the perfect follow-up for the unbeatable Lambchop performance because you just couldn't compare the two bands.
Mac McCaughan came out on stage before the fifth band instead of the night's emcee and announced that there was a lone protester outside. He invited him up on stage and it was Jon Wurster decked out in Phillies gear as Philly Boy Roy. He was holding a sign that said "Boycot MERGE." He complained that Merge didn't have any Philly bands on their roster and Mac said that they have bands from Jersey, which is close to Philly. You never compare Jersey to Philly in front of Philly Boy Roy. It was hilarious.
All of this led to the introduction of New Jersey punks Pipe. As soon as they kicked into their first song, beer cans and plastic bottles started flying. Frontman Ron Liberti ate it up and even put himself in the line of fire, headbutting some of the cans while kicking some back into the crowd. Liberti bounded around the stage, essentially taunting the crowd. The crowd loved the band's antics as did I (but that may have been different if I hadn't managed to stay dry). Check out the aftermath on stage at the end of the set in the last picture.
The band's set appeared to be in danger after they had to cancel a warm-up show at The Cave last week because of the guitarist coming down with Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. The show went off without a hitch, though, and The Cave show is expected to be rescheduled for a later date.
Check out photos of Polvo and Pipe below. More photos and reviews of night three will follow shortly.
[all photos by Kevin Norris]
Philly Boy Roy