After witnessing the horrors that were Super Bowl XXXVII and the hometown Oakland Faders' complete collapse, it seemed reasonable enough to get the hell out of the house on Monday night and go see a gig. Conveniently enough, '80s-influenced indie rockers Hot Hot Heat were already scheduled for two shows at San Francisco's Bottom of the Hill on a double bill with NYC's The Walkmen. Fellow Big Apple rockers Longwave were initially scheduled to play, as well, but they took off for greener pastures (read: opening up for The Donnas on a set of dates), but two out of three isn't bad, right?
The quartet from Victoria, British Columbia took the stage to cheers from the all ages indie assemblage. Singer Steve Bays, looking like Noel Gallagher meets Robert Smith, kicked the band into gear from the jump, pounding his Roland keyboard and injecting infectious energy into the set. Much of their Sub Pop debut, Make Up The Breakdown was played, including "5 Out Of A Hundred," "Get In Or Get Out" and "Oh, Goddamnit," but tracks off their EP, Knock Knock Knock and unreleased tracks from a pending UK single were rocked, as well. "No, Not Now" and first single (and show closer) "Bandages" were the strongest tracks on the evening, but the band's entire take on 2003 new wave was greatly received. Much of the floor could be seen bopping to HHH's bouncy pop gems, a scene that I would expect was recreated in clubs all along their West Coast tour. Bays left the stage professing his love for The Walkmen and informing the crowd of their pending joy as that band were next up next, but seeing as how I had gotten about four hours of sleep the night prior and the agony of Super Bowl XXXVII was still exploding in my head, it was time to head for my pillow top. There's always tonight, though.