I’ve been meaning to see Hair Police for literally years now. This noise-rock act from here in Lexington is kind of a sensation, getting noticed by a variety of national media, culminating (so far!) in touring with Sonic Youth last year.
Seeing them (or, rather, the goal of seeing them) has been this kind of unknown quantity for me, which has in and of itself been kind of hilarious. I get the general gist, the field report– noise, chaos, mania, flailing. In fact, on many occasions, I’ve taken the opportunity to tell people about Hair Police, and describe them, never having seen them myself.
But it’s not entirely presumptuous, because of this thing that happened a couple of years ago: I went to this house party just to see them, and—fresh back from living in NYC—I had missed this new trend of Lexington bands playing 30 minute (or less) sets. So I got to this house at 10pm (plenty early right?) talked to some people out front, and finally meandered into this living room, where this wall of pure white noise was ensuing from a destroyed drum kit, lying in pieces, and several guys epileptically flailing around with guitars and mics. Otherwise, the room was detailed with a variety of hipster kids, standing around watching or not, laughing or not, talking. This sight was preposterously mesmerizing. It reminded me of small children exposed for the first time to mics, amps and guitars; Often, when I’ve seen this, the kids just end up screaming and banging on these things, hypnotized by the incredible racket that THEY ARE MAKING.
So when I went to Mecca to actually finally see Hair Police last night I was kind of surprised by this revelation: They sound exactly like I thought they would. With the flailing, and the banging and the… the… jeez, who fuckin’ knows? Good or bad, I ain’t got a clue, but it’s a sight to behold.
My friend Kate put it best: “Listening to Hair Police–It’s like watching my family being set on fire.”
After the gig (estiimated time: 25 minutes), I talked Robert, possessed modified electronics czar. Immediately restored from spastic flailing to a general calmness, he asked, “Have you ever seen us before?” and I told him the above encounter. He replied with a smile and a shrug: “Yeah, that could’ve been us.”