Clockcleaner – 9.13.07, Philadelphia, PA, First Unitarian Church
Though Clockcleaner’s Myspace page features a photograph of Philip K. Dick, if the band were to have a science fiction doppelgÃ¤nger, it would more likely be Harlan Ellison than Dick. Like Ellison, who is more known for his persona, editorial rants before his stories and general outspoken views, Clockcleaner is likewise known (and celebrated across the web) for their caustic antics and disdaining opinions of the Philadelphia music scene. Clockcleaner legend has garnered the band press everywhere from Vice Magazine (check out the Vice Web-isode on VBS.tv Practice Space) to the Philadelphia Weekly, which most recently declared Clockcleaner “Phillyâ€™s most hated band”.
The question is: Is Clockcleaner really chaotic evil? Clockcleaner’s recent gig at the First Unitarian Church in Philadelphia proved two things, the first being that “No, Clockcleaner is not the anti-Christ”, and the second being that the overall weirdness of a venue can always outdo whatever schtick your band has up its sleeve. Go to Google and type in “First Unitarian Church”. Click the first hit and take a good gander at the church ladies and bingo night. The dimly lit basement where Clockcleaner frontman John Sharkey dry-humped a fan onstage may very well be the same place bingo night is held. But for all of Clockcleaner’s antagonism, the band’s act is just that, an act. From bassist Karen Horner’s opening announcement that she broke her finger “fingering” her boyfriend, fans and band alike seemed in on the joke. Albeit, a lot of the jokes were fairly crude, but they were jokes nonetheless.
In the end it is nice to know that there are bands like Clockcleaner out there who want to do more than just play music by putting on a show and stirring people up in an attempt to shake complacency and mediocrity. Hopefully Clockcleaner will continue to stir the shit and eventually challenge their newly anointed nemesis, the Philly band Man Man, to a rock-off, milk challenge or whatever. That will be a show that no one will want to miss.
Click here to see photos from the show.