Hong Kong Blood Opera + Vivian Girls + The Muslims at Santos

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The Vice party started out like the majority of Vice parties: crowded, dark, drunk, and progressively less cool as the drunk wears off. Which is usually about an hour in, when the free booze runs out. If the free booze lasted longer than a set maybe it'd be a real party. But anyway the people that fill these places aren't the type to risk sobriety to save a couple bucks, so at least the floor is filled with writhing, well-dressed bodies until well into the morning.

The relatively new Santos is a fitting venue for this sort of dig. Expensive-looking, ample bars, a prominent disco ball, noticable advertising space. The pillars are a nice touch, giving a sort of biblical quality to the whole place, like everyone was a dancing philistine at a sacrifice to Baal before a huge wall of speakers… and yet the sound still wasn't great. Maybe because it's more of a club than a venue and the sound guy wasn't used to live bands.

Hong Kong Blood Opera… As Nate said to me, if they look like a rock band, it doesn't really matter what they sound like. Good thing too, because with the sound in that place they could have been singing about Jesus and we wouldn't know. But what came across crystal clear was that they looked like a fucking rock band, (the band was all in black excepting, as the Brooklyn Vegan commenters noted astutely, their shoes), danced around and shimmied and screamed like a rock band, and when the singer jumps into the crowd and the guitarist falls on the floor and goes into a rock seizure, who cares. Shut up and mosh. Also, they played a song called “Disco Sucks”. Ironic enough considering the disco ball, and the fact that that's what the DJ had been playing while they set up.

So it might be more performance than music, really. But don't get me wrong, dancing around on stage is serious business. Anyone who thinks differently hasn't been brained by the flailing head of a bass guitar before. And while they played short and sweet songs, often ending abruptly mid-sway, I'm stuck to the floor with other people's spilled Colt 45. Thank you, Vice.