Halloween Approaches; Time For Witch Fingers

by | Oct 18, 2021 | MUSIC

Halloween’s only two weeks away, and the nights are starting to get cool, but you can warm up this Tuesday evening with some prime psych-rock at Fuzzy Cactus, courtesy of Frankie And The Witch Fingers and Acid Dad. For details, read on.

This Tuesday night, Frankie and the Witch Fingers and Acid Dad come to Fuzzy Cactus to present Richmond with the best of current psychedelic rock from both coasts. While Frankie and the Witch Fingers hail from Los Angeles, Acid Dad are an NYC-based group, and I for one think this show is going to be loud and fun.

So yeah, in addition to a mask (for COVID, not Halloween), and either a vaccine card or proof of a negative COVID test (within 24 hours), you should probably earplugs to Fuzzy Cactus on Brookland Park Boulevard tomorrow night. Frankie and the Witch Fingers’ latest album, Monsters Eating People Eating Monsters, features a surf-psych rock sound that kind of stays low and flat, like desert shrubs in the wavering heat. Or narrow, like a long shore break. It’s almost as though you have to hear those dampened vocals over the fuzz of the offshore breeze.

Each song is as long and steady as the progress of the sun in the flatlands. There’s a gruesome side to their music that spontaneously emerges from the steady-wavelength emissions. They refer to tar pits and primordial soup. I hear a lot of Black Sabbath’s “Paranoid,” and absolutely love every second of it! “Cavehead” is one of the strangest videos I have seen in a while, but shoutout to juniper berries and slickrock! I can relate to “Work,” since this Tuesday night show promises an unusual escape, and I can’t wait to hear some vibes brought to me from another coast. I like all the images of their touring and live shows, and that cool Gibson gets me thinking of Jerry Garcia, 1969

Low and flat but grinding and stifling. This environmentally conscious group is “Cookin’,” and their recently remastered album, Brain Telephone (originally released in 2017), is worth a listen. “Learnings of the Light” and “Let Love Be Love” have an authentic grunge Beatles sound and make me want to dance, “Sunshine Earthquake” is pop and lyrical and ends up going through the rabbit hole (and might be a glib play on a Grateful Dead song title). “Microscope,” one of my favorites, pulls at your heartstrings with the end-of-a-school-dance 80’s backdrop. And “Owsley” is a dedication to a person who experimented with live music production, live recording and the wall of sound. This group sounds like they appreciate playing for a crowd. 

Where Frankie and the Witch Fingers’ previous releases sound retro, their new sound is just as rhythm-driven, and sleeker without the keyboard/organ.  

Acid Dad, Frankie’s East Coast psych rock counterpart, can play that fast-paced rock but has a much rounder, melodic lead guitar sound. If you’re wondering what to wear to the Fuzzy Cactus for this show, I suggest you look no further than Acid Dad’s video, “Searchin’.” It’s ironic glam, as best I can pin it down.  

Both bands have collaborated with the same NY-based label, The Reverberation Appreciation Society, and will appear together at the end of the month at a psych-rock fest called Levitation in Austin, Texas. And while learning that, I have located an advertisement for “Drizly,” the app for delivering alcohol right to your door. Must be writing this after hours… but regardless — I’m very, very excited to check out this show! 

Frankie and The Witch Fingers and Acid Dad will perform at Fuzzy Cactus, at 221 W. Brookland Park Boulevard, on Tuesday, October 19, joined by True Body and Father Sunflower. Tickets are $13 in advance, $15 at the door, and can be ordered via Eventbrite. Show starts at 9 pm. See you there.

Top Photo by David Fearn, via frankieandthewitchfingers.com

Kieran Cleary

Kieran Cleary

Kieran Cleary: works at a Taekwondo school in Midlothian. Co-writes a music blog, All Apologies. Graduated from The College of William & Mary, BA English, 2014. Volunteers for the RVA Environmental Film Festival. Likes to play bike polo and go on long walks and adventures.

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