How to explain the beauty of noise, speed, volume and energy delivered pure and uncut . . . It's like trying to tell a stranger about rock 'n' roll itself.
The hard-core melee headlined by San Francisco's D.K.s at George Washington University's Marvin Center Thursday night was a matter of exploring and exploiting the extreme, the good, the bad and the most definitely ugly.
During the opening bands' sets the peaks came in ragged succession. What mattered most were their motives and mode of delivery--passionate, expressive, brutally original: Faith's moody, fractured pseudo-classicism; Double O.'s throbbing densities; the carefully misshapen un-rock of Government Issue.
The D.K.s mashed all these qualities into one single, long-playing pulse of sonic/emotional catharsis. After a long interruption caused by mechanical failure early in the show, the D.K.s began slamming into the audience's collective consciousness with diabolical effectiveness. Lead singer Jello Biafra seasoned explicit politics with humane, self-deprecating humor, high-voltage theatrics and an absolute miracle of a ranting yet tuneful voice. The band responded with music that simultaneously was incongruously hasty yet finely detailed, gut-wrenchingly loud but lyrical. This was a fusion conceived in heaven but forged down below.