Kid Congo powers a gutter punk and rock guitar hero


Los Angeles punk rock guitar hero Kid Congo Powers is playing in Vancouver this Saturday.

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Kid Congo Powers and the pink monkey birds

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Or: Rickshaw Theater, 254 E. Hastings St.

When: Saturday May 7 8 p.m.

Tickets: $ 18.50 on ticketfly.com, Highlife, Neptoon, Red Cat Records and Zulu

The shooting club. The Cramps. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Kid Congo Powers has an impeccable punk and gutter-rock pedigree. The Pink Monkey Birds guitarist is also legendary for looking great posing his dirty rock tracks.

A recent Vogue.com article was devoted to “The Singular Fashion Sense of Punk Icon Kid Congo’s Powers.” It’s worth a visit to appreciate how he created an image that has stood the test of time, right down to that distinctive pencil.

“You know, when I started, which seems like a very long time ago now, nobody knew anything about music or making records or anything like that, but we just knew we had to do it,” Powers said. “And I kept being invited to join these groups that went their own way. Throughout, for me, it’s always stayed the same because I want music to be fun, sexy, dangerous, and both silly and smart at the same time.

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In the Red Records is releasing the fifth release of Pink Monkey Birds this week. Entitled La Arana Es la Vida, the record is a cheerful riff through the distinctive mix of garage rock powers, surf music, hardcore punk, burlesque va-va-voom and a kitchen sink or two. Four-star reviews on allmusic.com and other music media precede the tour.

“At first I was fascinated by all kinds of music, but it was really the psychedelic sound that caught my attention and I remember my cousins ​​playing Jimi Hendrix Experience Axis: Bold As Love all the time,” Powers said. “He never left the turntable and I knew every word, everything about their wonderfully flamboyant look, and it continued all the way to the Dr. Demento Show and the music, art and fashion on the fringes.”

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Born Brian Tristan and nicknamed Kid Congo by the late singer of the Cramps Lux Interior, the Los Angeles punk hero now lives in New Haven, Connecticut, where her husband is employed by the Yale University Museum. He says no matter where he goes, he knows his tribe when he meets them, and that’s a matter of taste.

“It’s always been the case to find like-minded musicians, from Cramps to Nick Cave to Mark Eitzel,” said Powers. “We all shared a similar taste and that has been the case with the Pink Monkey Birds, which are three Chicanos – two from Southern California and one from El Paso, Texas – and one honorary, who is our drummer from Las Cruces. , New Mexico. “

La Arana Es La Vida takes its title from the song of the same name. It’s an ode to the crawly boogie to the spider as femme fatale, whether with the fly or the kiss of the spider woman or the spider goddess of Tenochtitlán.

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“She guards the gates of the Underworld Pyramids in ancient Mexico,” Powers said. “It springs from hallucinogenic morning glories, dreams and things that keep the Underworld and the city as a whole. I thought that’s what we do with music, we have dreams and hallucinations and it’s our job to make good music to protect underground music.

He develops this last point by stressing that Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds are part of a community that makes music that does not correspond to the tastes or to the general public. And he is quick to point out that this isn’t limited to guitar-bass-drums or rock bands.

“Dance music, disco, brass bands; something good that excites listeners and the live audience, I’m all for, ”said Kid Congo Powers. La Arana Es La Vida and this week’s concert meet those criteria.

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