The first time I saw Peelander-Z I laughed so hard that my cheeks hurt for days after. The second time I saw them I damn near pissed myself due to laughing so much. Each time they come to town I call all of my friends and assure them that this is the show they want to go to. Although I’ve done this enough to my crew and some of them are over it, some people still believe me and those people always leave a Peelander-Z show with sore cheeks and a story to tell. Last night was no different. It may have been my third time seeing this band but I still laughed at every cheesy joke and found myself dancing under the limbo rope with a sense of gusto and life that I didn’t know I could have on a Monday night.

Kicking the late show off was a local favorite of mine- Birthday Suits. I stumbled upon this duo a couple of years ago at a local block party and it was love at first listen. Chaotic and distorted, their music does take a little something, something to get behind but it’s so purely unique and, well, strange that it didn’t take me long to realize these guys have “it”. They proved to me yet again that they do in fact have “it” and although they definitely don’t get the recognition they deserve from the local scene, nothing is going to stop them from having a good time and stay true to themselves. A noisy garage-punk with a sense of force and power that is nothing short of impressive for a duo, Birthday Suits’ set was quick and painless and definitely got my friends and I into the right headspace for the rest of the show.

Set changeovers were super quick and within no time Missouri based Me Like Bees was taking over the stage and winning over everyone’s heart. One of my favorite thing about this show was the bi-polar nature of the music (no, I’m not kidding). The chaos of  Birthday Suits was replaced by a super fun indie rock vibe from Me Like Bees (and that vibe would be swapped out with whatever you would classify Peelander-Z as but more on that later). The drastic change in sound kept the night feeling fresh and seemed to keep everyone captivated. Me Like Bees may not have been the band the modest audience had come out to see but they definitely turned into a new favorite for nearly everyone there.

Think Modest Mouse meets The Killers but with an almost southern flair and a sense of perfection and you might get close to what Me Like Bees sounded like. There was something just so solid and perfect about this four-piece that within just a couple of songs the drunken conversations my friends and I had been having stopped with any chatter was only between songs and the words solely revolved around how impressed we all were with Me Like Bees. Don’t let me talking about their perfection scare you into thinking they were no fun, Me Like Bees was a super fun band to watch. There was just something so effortless about the way the members played but also something so energizing at the same time. Like the rest of the audience, I was at last night’s show for Peelander-Z and their amazing live show but Me Like Bees definitely sparked my interest and I’m already waiting for them to announce another show up here in the Twin Cities.

Now, the almighty Peelander-Z. Where do I even start? A Japanese punk band now based in Texas, these guys are truly out of this world. I won’t go into their full backstory as I have done that before but, long story short, the three members hail from the Z area of planet Peelander. I mean, do I really need to say much more? PZ is seriously one of the strangest live bands I’ve ever see but also one of the best. Their live show, just like their backstory, is truly out of this world. From human bowling to the limbo to picking random people from the audience to come up and play their instruments without any previous knowledge on how to play said instruments (no, I’m not kidding), I feel like every time I see them, although I know the jokes and antics are coming, it’s impossible to not just laugh and smile the entire time.

Just like I told two of my friends in the group that had never see PZ before, you don’t go for the music, you go for the show. Their songs are short, chaotic and about random things like bikes, wanting a medium rare steak, and the fact that there are too many people in this world named Mike (no, seriously… it’s one of their more popular songs). The songs definitely aren’t the most technical thing I’ve ever heard and their lyrics aren’t deep and thought-provoking but that’s the charm in this band. The chaos of the fast and dirty songs somehow matches the group’s unique brand of comedy in the most perfect way. An intergalactic punk comedy hour– I mean, nobody asked for it but it’s exactly what we all need.

We live in a world where everything is taken so seriously and, as you grow older, fun becomes something you have to try for, not something that just happens. PZ reminds you that life is too short to not have fun. It’s too short to not pick a metal dog bowl and wooden spoon out of the box and hit said metal dog bowl with all of your might (yes, you guessed it– part of their shtick). Honestly, being at a PZ show is a bit like reliving your youth (only this time with alcohol). There’s something so comfortable and friendly about the band and the people that attend PZ shows to the point where all inhibitions are thrown to the wind. There’s not many places left that give you that feeling so, from the bottom of my heart, thank you Peelander-Z for giving us that.

Line Up:

Birthday Suits

Me Like Bees

Peelander-Z

Venue: Uptown VFW

Sausage Fest Meter- 6 out of 10

Average Age of the Crowd- 32

Crowd Surfers- 2

Laugh-Ability- 12 out of 10

Stage Divers- 2

Broken Bones- 0

Spotted Flying Through The Air- P!nk

Fights- 0

Pukers- 0

Drunkards Taken Out By Security- 0

Celebrity Sightings- None

Overall Score- 10.7 out of 10

Show on Deck- Tacocat/ Sammi Lanzetta

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