HYPE CHECK: Blank Dogs Live @ (Le) Poisson Rouge (With Bonus Black Dice Action!!!)

Words and Photos by Aaron Richter

So much for the one-man band. To be perfectly honest, self-titled wasn’t sure what to expect at (Le) Poisson Rouge Friday night for a set by lo-fi Brooklyn act Blank Dogs, lesser known as Mike Sniper. Though based on his Joy Division-baiting “mini-LP” The Fields and his former reputation as a mysterious recluse, whatever semblance of the disturbed artiste we’d formed in our heads, this definitely was not that. Blank Dogs’ onstage lineup included a second guitarist, a bassist, a drummer, a synth/electro wizard and a saxophone player–rather extensive for a bedroom project–and the show was something more akin to, say, Dark Meat than the macabre bumbling that the music might imply. The group sounded shambled, the mix a bit sloppy, the vocals barely discernible–these criticisms not necessarily detractions–yet full, loud, fun and vibrantly messy. The finest touch, perhaps, was ol’ boy on sax, who was blowing his face off like he was auditioning to wail on Funhouse. We entered the show confused and left even more so. Which we’re sorta OK with.