In The Flesh 

Electric Six
Monday, October 3
Cat’s Cradle, Carrboro, N.C.

Electric Six singer Dick Valentine takes the stage and says, “We like to come to North Carolina and get progressively hammered as the night goes on.” Then the band launches into “Dance Epidemic” off the latest, Euro-only Senor Smoke.

Within the first few songs, Valentine’s exaggerated bluster finds further expression in his goofy stage-side antics; he flirts with a girl in the front row, hugs a different chick from the stage, and then steps several feet into the crowd (twice) to hug another. That’s when Valentine isn’t bounding across the stage in his green sports suit like Will Ferrell having a Go Spartans! flashback. And did the band recruit keyboardist Tait Nucleus from Amish country?

Valentine’s swaggering frolic epitomizes the band’s purposely contrived show and disco-fied garage. Aimed at your ass, it’s unobtrusively catchy and subversively fleshy, like wondering what Pete Townshend really meant when he sang, “Tommy, can you feel me?” The 100 or so people out on this Monday night certainly appreciate it. If the Six’s shtick is getting tired, they don’t know; many of them simply thrust arms in air and jiggle ass.

Valentine, in complete command of his audience, shares a funny story about the local Holiday Inn they’re in, where the owner has his employees dress as sports referees. He later mentions their new album (the U.S. release is imminent). Pushing past the 90-minute mark, the sweat-soaked Six close on a rousing “Dance Commander,” lifting all asses off seats.


Appears Saturday, Oct. 15, at the Blind Pig, 208 S. First, Ann Arbor; 734-996-8555. ith the Woggles, Troy Gregory and the Stepsisters.

Chris Parker is a freelance writer. Send comments to

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