Salt Lake City’s beloved venue Kilby Court celebrated its 22nd anniversary by throwing its second annual Kilby Block Party this past weekend. With such a wide variety of artists playing the event, you could say I was extremely excited to spend the day in SLC listening to live performances. Concert presenters Sartain and Saunders closed off 700 south, placing the main stage right on the entrance to Kilby Court, and down the road facing it was the Spyhop stage.
After opening for Tacocat last year at Kilby, The Paranoyds made their way back to SLC in support of their first album Carnage Bargain, described on the group’s Bandcamp page as “a raucous blend of garage rock grit, new wave swagger, horror film soundtrack campiness, and a myriad of other influences.” Their live show gave a glimpse into this “myriad,” made evident in their tangible 1960’s Batman theme-esque guitar riffs, their reverberating synth accents, and infinite rhythms that rattle around in your head and never seem to leave.
“We have a security question…we’re asking if everyone can take one step back.” Such was the plight of Surf Curse, whose gravitational pull was just too strong for their own good during the Salt Lake City stop of their Heaven Surrounds You tour. The room was packed enough that only when the audience detached themselves from the front of the stage did one suddenly notice the air start to recirculate, which probably only fed the unceasing cycle of near-moshing, crowd-surfing, and lyric-shouting that accompanied their set.
The crowd was forced to part as a casket was brought into the room. Its pallbearers strained under the weight before laying it down next to Kilby Court’s stage. The wildly unexpected sound of an industrial saw ripped through idle chatter—somethingwas breaking free from within the casket. Emerged a figure with dark hair, a blue bandana around his neck, and a face painted ghostly white. Branson Anderson was back from the dead.