This past Memorial Day weekend, Detroit natives The Von Bondies
made a stop at Pontiac’s Clutch Cargo’s. On tour supporting
the much hyped, yet commercially

disappointing Pawn Shoppe Heart, the group looked to drum up
sales and

entertain the local crowd filled with family and friends. They
brought along disco/funk band

VHS or Beta.

VHS or Beta’s polished sound greatly mimicked the 70s era
disco, while

incorporating rock elements, as bands such as The Rapture have done
recently.

At first, this style confounded many in rock-oriented audience, but
the crowd

grew more receptive and was eventually won over by the talented
group.

The Von Bondies took to the stage with Michael Jackson’s classic,
“Thriller”

playing in the background and threw the energized crowd into a
frenzy with a

raucous performance of the title track off their first album,
Lack of Communication. The

aggressive nature of their song library kept the energy level at a
constant high. Tearing through 16 songs in less than an hour, the
group delivered a true rock performance that unfortunately inspired
moshing.

Song similarity, however, proved a problem during the concert.
 The Von Bondies,

already labeled as a group with a sound but no songs, only
amplified their

weakness by blaring their guitars and drums, throwing lead singer
Jason

Stollsteimer’s voice into oblivion. The vocals of bassist Carrie
Smith and guitarist Marcie

Bolen suffered an even worse fate under the bleating of the
guitars.

Nonetheless, the crowd got what it expected in a Detroit rock show:
Loud,

raucous music. It was only fitting that the night be capped by the
classic “It

Came from Japan,” whose chorus aggressively states that “we
all hail hail from

rock and roll.”

 

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