Something about truly insane rock 'n' roll turns a crowd into one flailing, orgiastic organism — sharing space, joking about collisions, unafraid of looking foolish. Even before Ty pulls a fan onstage — placing the shocked guy's fingers on his guitar so he can strum while Segall chords from behind — before the excited young man hops over the proscenium arch, and before the kids dancing so hard that they can’t be fettered by the bags and beer cans forming a sea around the stage lip, it's clear the band loves being...here...now. We know it before icy beauty Emily Rose breaks down laughing at Ty's intro (about Emily wanting a sofa he can't afford), then slams those drums with force and precision. Maybe her façade starts breaking when one of the Spicolis waving fists in an eddy around me shouts, "Bodacious!" after Segall introduces her.
John Dwyer's high-pitched, Star Wars-cantina vocals have been circulating the 'Frisco garage scene like a disease: Segall could be Dwyer's manic kid brother. Indeed, Sonny & the Sunsets' opener, which was riddled with sarcasm, inventiveness, goofy songs, and balance/monitor issues, which managed to pull together stunners like psychotically shimmering stomper "Stranded," confirms that all these guys have been doing laps in a mutual garage/psych gene pool.
Segall's titles are irrelevant against the ecstatic blur of screams, chants, and as many roots/fuzz/metal-circa-the Pixies/Nirvana essentials as can be squeezed into 16 songs. What is worth mentioning: a funny, sloppy Aerosmith cover, along with half of Big Star's "Don't Lie to Me." Or the line that forms after the show for signed copies of the new album — Segall keeps looking up as if he's surprised at his rising star's trajectory.
Concert: Ty Segall with Sonny & the Sunsets
Date: June 24
Venue: Bar Pink
Seats: front and center