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Birthday Songs

30 Dec


As much as I welcome the fact that – possibly fueled by the economic/music industry crisis – some of my favorite artists have recently gone on “reunion tours”, I prefer the anniversary tour concept. Most obviously, because it means the artists in question have continuously made music and never split up. Of course, 2011 marked a whole number of anniversaries including the 20th birthdays of Pearl Jam’s “Ten” and Nirvana’s “Nevermind” – not bands as such but still milestones in rock history.
On a more “national” note, 2011 also marked the 10th birthday of German punk rockish outfit Itchy Poopzkid, a band I last talked about on ROXITY in July. Reason enough for these three to finish the year with the second leg of the “Lights out London” tour with Austrian support 3 Feet Smaller (keep a watch out for these guys!) and a birthday party at the Roxy in Ulm.

Itchy Poopzkid @ Colos-Saal, AschaffenburgAfter a first show earlier in the year in Frankfurt and the second show in Wirges at the Spack! Festival, the gig at Aschaffenburg’s Colos-Saal came with an awesome feeling of familiarity. And I guess this is what really makes this band’s shows unique, too. Even if there is a distance physically – be it through rows of fans or barriers in front of the stage – they have a talent to make everyone in the room feel “close”. I have tried to demystify the way in which they own their fans. My best guess boiled down to a concoction of much-loved tunes, a down-to-earth performance attitude, and the way in which they do not take themselves or each other too seriously. Until I went to the actual birthday bash on December 23 at the Roxy, that is. There, the relentlessly enthusiastic performance was spiked with a few really moving special effects and performances that put a whole new spin on the concept of owning the crowd. I don’t want to over-dramatize this into an epiphany, but I guess I finally got it. It’s the essence of the cliché that has come to be known as “the American dream” – people like you and me turning passion into vocation and succeeding. The only difference in the Itchy Poopzkid version is: there is no envy involved. These guys are so ready to share the experience with their fans that all the fans can do is be genuinely happy that they are still going strong after 10 years. Hard to say no when it comes from the heart, I guess.

More on the Colos-Saal Aschaffenburg:
More on the Roxy Ulm:
More on 3 Feet Smaller:
Photos 3 Feet Smaller, Colos-Saal:
More on Itchy Poopzkid:
Photos Itchy Poopzkid, Aschaffenburg: