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Review: Jaake Margo, Blank Frame, Monogatari, De Cor at The Rock Shop

In Clubs, Music
Jaake Margo performs at The Rock Shop.

Jaake Margo performs at The Rock Shop.

Jaake Margo is a busy man. He’s the lead singer of Kill the Bats, a San Jose melodic punk band currently recording their debut LP on Asian Man Records. He also recently started promoting local shows at the San Jose Rock Shop, a music store and private club in downtown San Jose. And he still finds time to perform his solo.

Margo (listen below) brought his brand of confessional acoustic punk to the Rock Shop last night, July 21, where he played along with the San Jose punk quartet Blank Frame and other local artists.

As it turns out, Margo hadn’t intended to perform, but due to some last minute cancellations—from San Jose veterans Stickup Kid and So-Cal act The Wild Young Hearts—he was forced to scramble, drawing on his connections in the local scene and DIY spirit. In addition to stepping up to the microphone, Margo also convinced Jeremy Romero to perform under his harsh noise alias Cluster Headaches.

While the changes in lineup resulted in a low turnout, the show—which turned out to be an all-San Jose affair—was great.

Monogatari played a blend of classic melodic and trendy emo—equal parts Shinobu and Leer. De Cor (listen below) played a high-energy brand of punk that took some cues from hardcore, while each member of the trio switched between instruments.

Margo’s acoustic cast a spotlight for his skills as a lyricist, as he played both stripped-down versions of songs by Kill the Bats and original solo tunes. Blank Frames (listen below) put on a fun, danceable set that ended with a cover of NOFX’s “Murder the Government.”

Cluster Headaches was a big departure in mood and style from the previous sets. Romero played a 20-minute set that was cerebral and violent, which likely proved perplexing to some, but clearly intrigued attendees with eclectic tastes.


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