with Velvet Voodoo Dolls, Sugar Plum Dandy, Home, The Mighty Sturgeon, Camerons Way, Drawback, Slowpoke, Lachrymator, Doom Nation at The Vertex
by Scott Hefflon
photo by Trevor Whitaker
Right from the 1-2-3-4, the house rocked. The lights blasted the stage simultaneously with the monstrous Skunkjuice rhythm. The boys prowled the stage like hyperactive thrasher kids and made the good-sized stage seem small and confining.
The new guitarist fit right in without missing a cue, and the drummer, J.T. turned out to be quite a flamboyant drummer, even without the strobed hair tosses. The bassist played melody lines as well as providing the thunderous foundation for the lead. Singer Scott Francis had the bluesy clean lines and then kicked into throaty roars you might expect from a grisly looking heavy grunge/thrash singer. But the half naked, clean shaven and sparking eyed 130 lb singer makes females want to console him and tell him it’ll be alright. (I know, I get those same sym-pathetic embraces.)
The songs were tight and well arranged. I prefer their pit prompters, but the mid tempo songs were well-crafted and catchy. The vocals in the mid-tempo songs were kinda Pearl Jammin’, but the groove was heavier and more Stone Temple Pilots. (Yeah, yeah, more cop out comparisons.) They played many of the songs off their 11 song demo (Yup, 11 songs) and many from the new one that still isn’t out yet. The crowd response was overwhelming, and it seems they’ve really earned the right to be co-headlining the club. The band has popped up in Boston and in listings for the Rockpile and other clubs recently. Good. They should go over rather well. While Boston isn’t exactly the easiest scene to break into, Skunkjuice have a groove that can be appreciated anywhere.