March 26, 2010 – Let me start this one off by saying I already love Black Spyral Dancer, they are cool guys I’ve had the pleasure of watching and sharing a bill with on numerous occasions. I knew going into the Carabar that it was going to be a groovy time.

Madge of Black Spyral Dancer goading the crowd at Carabar

Madge of Black Spyral Dancer goading the crowd at Carabar

I strutted into the den of all that is Hip in C-Bus and ordered me the drink of champions (PBR in a mini pitcher, three bucks) and sat with my friends waiting to see if the leader of Black Spyral Dancer would remember me. His name is Madge and he is a true rock star without any unwanted cockiness. Sure enough, I didn’t down half of my beer before he exclaimed my name and made a B-line into my sights, as colorful and friendly as ever. He told me that the band had gone through a few personnel changes, but I was sure to see a good show and that if I didn’t like it I could thrash him mercilessly with my article. We spoke about the missing lead singer from the former incarnation. He said they were looking for a new lead singer, even suggesting that I step up to the plate. I am pondering this, by the way. He also informed me that he was now living in Columbus, SWEET! I reminded him that the last time I had seen him was at a show we had played with them in Athens, where he twisted the ever-loving crap out of his ankle after the last song, jumping off of the stage.  We laughed, and I went back to my gang and binge drinking, it had been a long day at work and I was ready to rumble.

So the opening act ended and the new three-piece Black Spyral dancer was getting it together on stage. They had a new bass player named Joe who had warmed up with some Jane’s Addiction bass hooks, “Three Days.” The drummer Justin sounded spectacular, even in his opening test fills, as they goofed around before the first song. They opened with “Autumn” and right away the show was popping. There were about fifty of us up front and we started gyrating and slurping PBR like it was our life-force. I thought musically they were tight as shit, slamming each note home with a velocity that would make anyone dizzy with energy. The drummer rippled through the set holding Madge and Joes guitars together with every ferocious beat. I was greatly pleased.

Madge of Black Spyral Dancer on stage at Carabar

Madge of Black Spyral Dancer on stage at Carabar

I did however notice the hole that was there vocally, Madge did his best to fill in, but his voice didn’t quite have the range I had hoped. That is until song two, “Divine” where he sang in alternating low tones mixed with biting verses back and forth, more sort of mumbling than barking. The song also started with Madge playing a flute that gave the whole intro a very Egyptian feel. I thought it went over very well.  Songs three and four followed through and didn’t let the energy waver. There was an excitement in the air and I knew Madge had been, and always would be, the driving force behind Black Spyral Dancer. Joe and Justin were a great combo that carried him perfectly, think of a mix of Tool and Janes Addiction. They got to an instrumental they dedicated to their ex-drummer, a man I knew, and was sad to find out the song was called “Heroin,” Rock and Roll is a bitch.

The set ended with a power punch number titled “Bugz,” I was very very glad these guys were back around. It sounds like they will be a fixture in the Columbus music scene for awhile and their energy is very needed. To see Madge flail away on stage made me glad that the ankle episode a year or so back hadn’t killed any of his rock star chutzpah. Check these guys out as soon as you can, you won’t regret! They can be found on MySpace at : http://www.myspace.com/blackspyraldancer.

-Oddfellow