5 Reasons to Come See KMFDM This Sunday (3/10) at Brooklyn Bowl

Industrial pioneers KMFDM have played Philadelphia countless times over the years.  Sascha K and his cohorts (which have included now-wife Lucia Cifarelli on keyboards/vocals and Andy Selway on drums...

Industrial pioneers KMFDM have played Philadelphia countless times over the years.  Sascha K and his cohorts (which have included now-wife Lucia Cifarelli on keyboards/vocals and Andy Selway on drums since 2002, along with Andee Blacksugar on guitar since 2017) have headlined The Trocadero and TLA a plethora of times since the ’90s, in addition to the likes of Union Transfer, Underground Arts, and Brooklyn Bowl in more recent years.  In fact, their 2004 20th Anniversary tour marked my first full year in the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection, and their 40th anniversary tour – which kicks off tonight in Atlanta – will mark my 21st.  In addition to celebrating their 40th year, the tour is also in support of LET GO, the band’s brand-new studio album, which dropped last month on their longtime home and Philthy’s own Metropolis Records.  The tour will have them returning to Brooklyn Bowl Philadelphia – which they headlined in October of 2022 – this coming Sunday, March 10th, and we can’t think of any reason why you should consider missing it.  However, if you need some more convincing, here are 5 reasons why you definitely need to come to the show…

1. The new album

Throughout more than twenty studio albums and somewhere around as many different lineups, KMFDM has never disappointed.  But their latest album, LET GO, may actually be their best since 2009’s BLITZ.  It may also be their most danceable ever.  The lead single and title track reeks of the best and boldest industrial disco of the 1990s.  And follow-up single, “Airhead,” is Lucia’s tongue-in-cheek ode to the eras that raised her, that could easily be a long-lost track off of the first Garbage record (On a rainy night outside The Troc in 2003, amidst the WWIII tour, she admitted to me that Shirley Manson was a big inspiration…)

2. The anthems

Although KMFDM are never ones to live in the past, and have managed to kick out transgressive postmodern jams throughout the entirety of their career, they also always dose their sets with a healthy handful of fan favorites of decades past.  Recent tours have been punctuated with nostalgic highlights like “Godlike” [which samples the riff of Slayer’s “Angel of Death” and features the band’s (perhaps most) famous chant of, “Black Man, white man, rip the system”] and “A Drug Against War,” the most abrasively groovy anti-war song of the ’90s.

3. The counter-spectacle

The politics of KMFDM certainly fall in line with Guy Debord’s famous critique of “the spectacle,” and their live performances have long taken the form of a profoundly potent counter-spectacle, turning a rock show into a danceable, sing-along-able, and dress-to-impress political protest that has the band resembling the sort of post-Apocalyptic revolutionaries that might be found in a William S. Burroughs tale, as fit to educate as they are to entertain.

4. The party

As the home of Metropolis Records (who have released the majority of KMFDM’s 21st Century records), Dancing Ferret, and an abundance of the genre’s most notable DJs and dance parties, Philadelphia has been a longstanding Mecca for industrial music, with local rivetheads (regardless of age) still filling their closets with leather, latex, and lace.  DJ Might Mike Saga, the area’s quintessential industrial DJ (best known for regularly spinning at Dracula’s Ball and Nocturne) will be hosting a pre-show party downstairs, from 6-8, whose energy will surely have made its way upstairs by the time openers Morlocks take the stage.

5. Just look at what they did for their 30th Anniversary…

KMFDM’s 30th Anniversary tour was captured in this pro-shot, feature-length live performance video, which features Sascha, Lucia, and Andy churning out some of their biggest hits (“D.I.Y.,” “Krank,” “Amnesia”), in addition to a number of highlights from 2013’s Kunst, including the group’s ode to their “blood sister comrade”s in a track named for Russian protest group (and phriends of PHILTHY) Pussy Riot.  The 90-minute set captures the still-perfectly-subversive nightclub exhibitions the band had been making famous for three decades.

*Get your tickets here.

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During the day Izzy Cihak teaches transgression, subversion, and revolution at Temple University. At night he haunts Philthy's best venues to cover worthwhile acts for Philthy Mag. Morrissey is everything to him and, in their own heads, all of his friends see themselves as Zooey Deschanel.