The Need and Bangs reunion show review

Discussing our excitement over the upcoming reunion show with The Need a few days before last Friday’s finale a friend commented that she was worried that they wouldn’t still have it. That they were (as we are) getting older, hadn’t played in awhile, and who knows what kind of skills they’ve lost in the lackadaisical interim (I’m exaggerating her comments here for effect).

But I needn’t have worried. Because last Friday night they brought down the house.

Not only were they tight and nuanced, but every bit a energetic as they ever were. And even as Rachel pulled up her shirt to expose her own mastectomy scars she joked about now being able to mow the lawn shirtless before launching into another perfectly executed anthem. And though my musical taste has tended more toward that which can be danced to as of late, their alt-metal filled a need in my body I didn’t even know I had.

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The Need and Bangs reunite for Pacific Northwest benefit tour

The Need's Rachel Carns with bandmate Radio Sloan in the background in an old school Oly alleyway

It has already been a summer of reunions, but Kaia Wilson doesn’t have the market cornered on dyke rock revival. Avant garde/metal/punk/hardrock scrappers The Need and fellow OlyWa queercore riot grrls Bangs are back in the saddle for a special 3 day benefit in the Seattle, Olympia and Portland this Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. We get the weekend night, at Berbati’s Pan (231 SW Ankeny St), so expect it to be packed.

Comprised of the energetic and wide eyed drummer Rachel Carns, and the more introverted sound producer dude and guitar god Radio Sloan, The Need were always a little out there, even within the lesbian music community. Their first release featured the vocal stylings and frenetic spoken word of independent filmmaker and performance artist Miranda July and Carns kept up the wild vocals and strange lyrics on their two album releases. They also collaborated in Olympia’s masterful summer 2000 rock opera The Transfused about a misfit band of animal people that were enslaved to the human corporate machine.

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