It has been ten years since the American release of the iconic album Pink by Boris. It was originally released on Southern Lord Records after its initial introduction in Japan. In celebration of the tenth anniversary Boris has released a special edition through Sargent House, including a slew of unreleased tracks.
The Japanese trio embarked on a U.S. tour in support of their recent release joined by none other than Washington’s favorite drone metalists, Earth. We had the good fortune of catching these two at Warsaw on your standard hot and sweaty New York summer night.
Earth kicked the night off, with Dylan Carlson quietly strolling on stage joined by Adrienne Davies on drums and Brett Netson on guitar. Netson is new to the Earth family and has previously been seen in Built to Spill. The two-guitar setup gave the night’s set a bit more of a folk tone then their famous drone sounds, but it was a nice change of pace.
The crowd hung on Carlson’s solemn yet heavy guitar riffs as Netson gave a complementary overlay on his side of the stage. Davies, who is one of my favorite drummers to see live, swayed and lunged with the rhythm as if her whole body was an extension of her drumsticks. It seemed like the members of Earth were slowly getting the crowd primed before they unleashed a throwback, “High Command,” to knock everyone off their feet.
The crowd had a little break to shake off the heady drone vibes before Boris took the stage. Atsuo, Takeshi, and Wata emerged from the fog and it felt like all hell broke loose. Contrary to what many might have expected, Boris took the liberty of rearranging the tracks from Pink, starting with “Blackout.” An energized Atsuo called out to the crowd from behind his kit before he stood up and pointed a lone drumstick into the frenzied, moshing mass.
As expected of Boris, their set was loud, capable of inspiring sleeping tectonic plates to wake up, making me curse myself for forgetting my earplugs and wondering how many days my ears would be ringing. The set was definitely a little more drone heavy at the beginning, but then they switched gears and brought out the punk vibes with “Electric” a little bit later in the set.
At this point the pit was in full swing, my shirt was ripped off by a grabby crowd surfer, and everyone was a sweaty mess except for Wata, whose ability to look stunning from start to finish without a single bead of glistening sweat was a wonder in and of itself. Suffice to say their show was a blast, and further proof that this band will never get boring. Top it all off with a gong pounding, stage diving Atsuo and you have one hell of a well-rounded set. Just don’t forget your earplugs if you catch them.