TVD Live Shots: Gwar at Showbox SoDo, 10/21

SEATTLE, WA | Last week I was in Seattle for a series of meetings for my day job and happened to be in town to witness another epic Gwar gig. In between corporate presentations and happy hours with my teammates, I was able to take in a show at the legendary Showbox SoDo. What better way to spend a Monday night in Seattle than celebrating 30 years of all things offensive and disgusting with Blothar, Balsac the Jaws of Death, Jizmak Da Gusha, Beefcake the Mighty, and Pustulus Maximus?

It was only a matter of time before Gwar set their sights on the current state of affairs and built an entire show around the most horrible thing to ever happen to the US: Trump. The scumdogs of the universe are back with new storylines, antics, decapitations, and of course, vast amounts of blood and space jizz. I was a bit surprised to not see the venue wrapped like a kill room in the TV show Dexter. Was there going to be less blood this time around? Short answer, no.

Having photographed Gwar several times in the past, I knew the rules of engagement. The more you cover up with a plastic wrap, raincoats, or camera condoms, the more you got it. So I went in with zero protection, just ready to embrace the chaos. I lost focus with the new intro for just a second and was immediately blasted by a torso that had just been beheaded to kick off the gig. My Nikon Z6 better be waterproof, I thought as I ran to the side to wipe the blood off my camera lens and get back into the action.

The setlist celebrated the band’s vast catalogue, and while they are clearly known for their over the top horrorfests, some of their songs are quite catchy. “Fuck this Place,” “Maggots,” “Beat You to Death,” “Bring Back the Bomb,” and of course if they had a hit, it would be the classic “Sick of You.”

A quick perusal of the reviews for the latest record The Blood of the Gods is sitting pretty with a near collective five-star review. So, is it the show or the music? Actually, that’s the wrong question—it’s the coming together of the two. Gwar not only knows how to put on one hell of an insane bloodfest, they also know how to strike a nerve because nothing is off the table, and I mean nothing.

The “Use Your Collusion” tour wraps up this week in the States before heading over to Europe to paint the continent red. I’ll be looking to get one more gig under my belt in the UK before the year is over, and I suggest you do the same.

Even though there are technically no original members in the band, the ones that have been there for the long haul still have plenty to say, and the blood splattering fun doesn’t look to be letting up one bit.

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