Mean Creek lead a rocking Allston block party

Out: Choose your own adventure
By MICHAEL MAROTTA  |  February 1, 2011

CONTACT HIGH Mean Creek weren’t too drunk to play.

"Hey, it's my birthday, and I got too drunk," announced Mean Creek's Chris Keene midway through their set before a sizable and affable crowd Saturday at the Brighton Music Hall. "You may remember me from such hits as 'Fucking Up the First Song.' " Twenty-four hours after the Decemberists apologized to the House of Blues for "killing indie music," Mean Creek's Hemophiliac release party may have restored carefree faith in the schizo, catch-all genre.

Tearing through the EP's skyscraper-tall rock anthems "Say You Care" and "I'm So Afraid," Mean Creek saved the showstopper for the very end, encoring with a tombstone-carving rendition of "The Comedian" that had both Keene and guitarist/vocalist Aurore Ounjian screaming as if the Apocalypse were inevitable.

And if the end times arrive today, Allston is going out on a high note. The crowd at Brighton was a bizarre yet appropriate hodge-podge of hipster types, scenester hanger-ons, and standard college hyper-bros, and much of the between-band conversation (as Dinosaur Jr. and the Pixies blared over the PA) centered on what else was happening around the neighborhood and whether anyone could get into the other within-walking-distance-but-presumably-sold-out shows that night.

For once — and maybe from here on out — Allston Rock City lived up to its often ridiculed nickname. As Mean Creek gave the BMH a sonic contact high around midnight, garage-rock veterans the Konks blitzkrieged a jam-packed, beer-drenched Great Scott, Bad Rabbits sweated up Wadzilla Mansion deep within the college ghetto's suburban sidestreets, and Big East brought rhythm & booze to the sold-out Berfest crowd at O'Brien's. Those were just the headliners; there was also Dirty Dishes (first show post–Jersey Shore airplay), Girlfriends (first show post-NPR blowjob), and Taxpayer at Brighton, Mystery Roar and DJ Die Young deep within Wadzilla's basement, Great-Scott-going-Abbey-Lounge with the Tampoffs, Tunnel of Love, and Triple Thick, and Arvid Noe and a half-dozen others cramming OB's.

So what's it mean? A blip on the scheduling calendar, or something more? It sure feels as if a new chapter in Boston rock were about to be written, and it's pretty fucking exciting.

Related: Connecting the dots, Ten local shows to break the ice in early 2011, Photos: Boston Music Awards 2010, More more >
  Topics: Live Reviews , Allston, DJ Die Young, Konks,  More more >
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