The crowd skewed young and trashed at Monday’s Black Lips show. Everywhere, mini-hipsters were dancing around, all skinny and disaffected. One guy was regaling a group of friends with the story of how long his hair was the last time he saw the band.

I hadn’t seen Quintron & Miss Pussycat before, but I had heard tell of Quintron’s invented musical instrument, the Drum Buddy. It’s a strange contraption, full of holes and pipes and lights and spinning coffee cans. But it was pretty cool to see it in action. The music was a catchy but noisy blend of upbeat soul and synth pop. Quintron sat behind a keyboard decked out with a vintage Chevy grill, and Miss Pussycat contended with a fussy, flapper-like costume that involved what looked like a head band with a Koosh ball on it. I enjoyed the energy of the performance, which definitely got everyone dancing, but this is strictly party music. Great live, but I’m guessing they’re not nearly as interesting on record.

Oh, and when their performance ended, Miss Pussycat hopped behind the curtain of a big, strange, inflatable puppet theater she had brought with her and did a puppet show. Really.

Despite the drunken yelling, shoving, crowd-surfing, stage-diving, and beer-cup-throwing, the Black Lips were pretty great. They may have been rushing through songs a bit (and seeing the crowd, who could blame them?), but the frenetic element worked for them. An old-fashioned rock band that doesn’t resort to fancy outfits or contrived, onstage theatrics, they’re a purist’s dream. By the end of the set, the guys were completely soaked in sweat, and if that doesn’t signal a good night, I don’t know what does.

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