The Art Punks of Virgin Islands Turn it Up to 11 at Columbia City Theater May 13
You’d think Michael Jaworski was busy enough. He books talent for one of Seattle’s best music venues (Ballard’s Sunset Tavern), and almost singlehandedly runs his own thriving indie label, Mt. Fuji Records, an imprint whose roster includes everyone from garage-punk terrors The Whore Moans (aka The Hounds of the Wild Hunt) to indie-country sensations The Maldives. But no. He has to go and put out one of the best full-on rock records of the year as lead singer/guitarist for Virgin Islands, to boot.
Ernie Chambers v. God, the band’s first full length, rocks every bit as hard and lean as Jaworski’s not-quite-dead earlier outfit The Cops, while still managing to explore a wider sonic pallate. Dischord punk vaults straight into the mosh pit with flanged-out garage rock on the spastically-hooky ‘No Doctor;’ ‘Kat Named Katastrophe’ brings to mind a mohawk-topped Cheap Trick; and the band whips up an angular funk groove worthy of Gang of Four on ‘I Come Correct’. All along the way, Jaworski spits out socially-aware lyrics with the sucker-punch accuracy of the best political punks out there. And did I mention that Virgin Islands rocks like holy, catchy hell?
Tonight, Jaworski and company celebrate the release of Ernie Chambers with a set at the Columbia City Theater (doors at 9 p.m.). If The Cops’ history of relentless live shows is any barometer, Virgin Islands should not disappoint. And with Tacoma garage-guttersnipes The Fucking Eagles, Bellingham heavy-groove trio Sugar Sugar Sugar, and the aforementioned Hounds of the Wild Hunt rounding out the bill, you’ll want to get there early enough to get your $8 (!) worth. Be there with bells–and earplugs–on.