Archive for the ‘TWRP’ Category

[ATTENDED: May 4, 2023] Liily

I wasn’t even entirely sure I was going to go to this show.  I only really knew one song by The Walkmen.  But I decided that I wouldn’t stay home.  I’d go check out this reunion show.

The opening band was Liily who I had not heard of before.  They came out–a four-piece from L.A.–and Charlie Anastasis the bassist (who had an awesome mop of curly hair), played a chord that rung out and feedbacked for about 90 seconds.  All the while the singer Dylan Nash stood at the front of the stage kind of confrontationally.

Then the band kicked into “Wash.”  It had a stomping bass and squealing guitars from Sam De La Torre.  But it was drummer Maxx Morando who soon claimed all my attention. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: April 22, 2023] TWRP

Back in 2021, I saw an ad for TWRP playing at Underground Arts.  I didn’t know who they were, but I was immediately struck by their photo (see below).

I don’t know why I didn’t investigate them more, because when I saw that they were playing Union Transfer this time, I was all over finding out what the deal was.

TWRP were once known as Tupper Ware Remix Party (TWRP is much better).

They are from outer space (and Canada).  They are also from the 1980s (and the future).

They are a foursome. In order of the below photo they are guitarist Lord Phobos, bassist Commander Meouch, keyboardist and vocalist Doctor Sung and drummer Havve Hogan.

And yes, they look like this onstage.

They came out to rapturous applause.  The crowd was 100% into it.  Commander Meouch stood in front of us, lion hair blowing in the fan.  Lord Phobos was on the far side and Havve Hogan was in the back on the kit.

And then Doctor Sung came out and immediately got the crowd hyped.  He told us all about their high tech new stage manager, Grobb.  Grobb appeared on the side of the stage in a circle which previously said IBS (in the IBM logo style).  Grobb looked like a psychopathic Teletubby as he smiled and talked to us.

Grobb greeted us “Hello Tokyo” and then proceeded to count in the first song, the new “VHS” which had an appropriate chant along of V-H-S.

The thing about TWRP is that their music is really quite full of disco.  Some of the basslines that Meouch played were full on disco riffs (hard to play in a full costume, I’m sure).  There was lots of heavy snyth and Doctor Sung sang with a vocoder most of the time.  It was such a weird melange of music but it worked really well live.

I was concerned that my son wouldn’t like them musically, but I realized that the youth of today care not for genre, and it was all fun.  He even bought a TWRP shirt (bur not a Magic Sword shirt because they weren’t very interesting).

I didn’t know any of their songs, but they played a few from each of their releases.

Grobb told Doctor Sung that he was dehydrated and forced him to drink a brownish hydration liquid–an amusing recurring skit (HYDRATE!).

A really fun song was “Atomic Karate” in which Doctor Sung showed off his (very impressive) athletic skills and even wielded nunchaku.

Grobb apparently went a little crazy (instead of counting them in he played clips of “Enter Sandman”) and Doctor Sung had to go in and reprogram him (the 8 bit graphics were amazing).  It was dangerous work.

Lord Phobos had some serious shredding skills on the guitar as well.  And after the final song, when the band came out for an encore, Lord Phobos hijacked the show with his new band Phobos Nation!

Phobos Nation was Phobos himself with Magic Sword as his backing band.  But before they could play anything, Doctor Sung came out and they had a fight for control.

This led to them both bands playing the ripping instrumental “Terraform.”

They ended with “All Night Forever,” a song that everyone loved.

The show wasn’t that long (maybe 75 minutes) which is understandable given the costumes.  It’s funny that they played only 13 songs, but they did jam most of them out and there was a lot of entertaining banter between songs.

But honestly I was glad the show was short.  It let us wait on the long line for merch and still get home at a reasonable hour.

Long live TWRP and honestly there couldn’t have been a better opening band.

In a 2015 interview with Scope, their origin was revealed

Doctor Sung was born around the time of the Big Bang. His parents died of boredom when he was just a small child, leaving him orphaned in the first Ice Age. Billions of years later, upon earning the 69th degree of his black belt in keytar, he had an epiphany and discovered his life’s purpose: to release humanity from the clutches of boredom through epic rock music.

To achieve this purpose, Sung carefully selected his band-mates from various corners of the multiverse. He chose the name “Tupper Ware Remix Party” because he liked the sound of those noises which, at the time, held no meaning for him.

Sung discovered drummer Havve Hogan unconscious in a cave during the Mesozoic period. Sung sensed a powerful energy field around this sinister, Frankenstein-like creature with red LEDs for eyes and, after numerous botched attempts to resuscitate the brutish cyborg, he met with success when he installed an 808 drum machine where Hogan’s heart had been.

Conducting anthropological surveys in the Paleolithic period, Sung observed a troublesome tendency in Hogan – to maim and murder early Homo sapiens in the plains as they hunted antelope and buffalo. However, his ability to hold down perfect time had endeared him so profoundly to Sung that the doctor excused his murderous behaviour.

While Hogan was recruited from the past, slap-bassist Commander Meouch and shred-guitarist Lord Phobos were located in a distant and complicated future. Meouch – a space pirate with a humanoid body and the head of a lion – was born in the more provincial reaches of the galaxy and made his fortune smuggling funk (apparently a controlled quantity in the future) to star systems that had been historically square.

One such solar system was home to Lord Phobos, a philosophical rocketeer. Phobos’s people had evolved over many millennia, their culture reaching a universal high-water mark of scientific and intellectual discovery. When Meouch arrived on the scene with his smuggled funk, Phobos’s world collapsed into a flaming orgy of chaos.

Swearing revenge on Meouch, Phobos pursued his ship and was on the verge of destroying it when Sung sprang through a nearby wormhole and corralled them both. Having modified Meouch’s ship for time travel, the trio travelled backwards to retrieve Havve Hogan and then forward to Earth in the year 2007 (roughly one millennium before Meouch or Phobos were born), an era that Sung’s calculations had indicated would be ripe for TWRP to thrive.


  1. Birth of Grobb *
  2. VHS *
  3. Bright Blue Sky ♥
  4. Polygon ♥
  5. Only the Best
  6. Typhoon Turnpike / Hidden Potential
  7. Atomic Karate £
  8. Superior Moves ♥
  9. Summer Everyday *
  10. Have You Heard? ©
  11. Starlight Brigade
  12. Terraform ♥ (with Magic Sword)
  13. All Night Forever

* new/unreleased.
© single (2023)
♥ New & Improved (2021)
∏ Over the Top (2020)

⇔ Return to Wherever (2019)
⊗ Together Through Time (2018)
£ Ladyworld (2017)

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[ATTENDED: April 22, 2023] Magic Sword

I saw Magic Sword open for Avatar back in 2021 and I knew I’d want to see them again.

What I wrote about them then stand up pretty well for this show:

There are three members: The Keeper (red, keyboard, audio-visual), The Seer (blue, guitar), and The Weaver (yellow, drums).  Oh yes, they are all masked (and not COVID masked, but like a fencing mask with a glowing light (in the above color) for the eyes).  All of their songs are pretty heavy with a main riff (and bass) coming from the keys and really heavy drums.  And then The Seer plays some extended impressive and super catchy guitar solos.

Every song feels like the exultant triumph of a cheesy 80s sci fi movie.  Which is not to say that their music is cheesy (it really rocks) but that it would be placed in a cheesy movie–and would sound great.

In fact, the band has written epic stories (and comic books) that go along with their music.  These songs are the soundtrack to those stories. So it all makes sense.

The set opened with a proclamation in a deep voice explaining that Magic Sword was here to defend all that good in the world.  And then the trio came out.

It’s all vaguely preposterous, but they are completely into it (The Weaver is excellent at getting the fans pumped up) and the music is so good, that it all works wonders.  A handful of people in the crowd had purchased Magic Sword swords (a tiny imitation of the real Magic Sword sword) and waved their blue glow around.

I felt like they played newer songs–songs that were a little more complicated with some excellent stops and starts in them.  But, since they are all instrumentals, it’s hard to know what songs they played.

But most importantly, mid way through the set The Keeper held aloft the blue glowing Magic Sword and all was well in Philadelphia.

I really thought my son would enjoy this show and he said he enjoyed Magic Sword a lot.  So that’s cool.

When the show was over we went to the merch table and I was pretty tickled to see that if you didn’t know what you wanted, you could roll a D20 and see if luck was on your side.  The guy in front of us rolled it and was granted the right to have his picture taken holding THE Magic Sword.


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