Crash Worship is one of those bands you just gotta see to believe. They are definitely a live band and not a studio band. They play sort of tribalindustronica: tribal kinds of beats (heavy on the sexual overtones) done on drums, voices, trumpets and other brass instruments, and weird gadgets.

Oh yes, and they pass around wineskins, douse people with water, use flour to set off fireballs, encourage sexuality (though not outright sex) and nudity (at least toplessness), and generally act rowdy until they are kicked out, whereupon they begin playing in the street until the police come and hush them up. It's great fun.

I don't know much else about them.

My introduction to them came about on a trip to Berkeley, California in the Fall of 1994, and the conversation went about like this:

"Hey, wanna see Crash Worship?"
"Sure."
"Got any clothes you don't mind having ripped off your body or burned?"
When we came back later and had all our clothes (we weren't wearing all of them, though), my friend commented that this was the first time he had ever had all his clothing survive a CW show. On one occasion, his shirt caught fire, and on another it was simply torn from his body by someone else in the crowd.

Since then I've seen them play in Albuquerque, New Mexico a couple times, and I know they came here recently (unfortunately, I couldn't make it), so they are still in existence. For a while, they almost had a website, but have let the domain lapse.

Crash Worship (or mainly Daniel Riddle, the guy on the mike) became King Black Acid, though there is occasional rumor that Crash Worship is doing something. They were based in Portland, OR. I used to live with one of the drummers, and it was surreal watching the following surrounding the band. They could get several city blocks in downtown Portland dancing, as they did for a Outside-In benefit I saw there. And let us not speak of the shopping carts. As nicely softlinked, they were a strange mixture of Einsturzende Neubauten, Sonic Youth, Stomp and other weird tribal jazzy mixture, highly recommended, but play it Loud. Probably influenced Critters Buggin.

Insanity! I saw Crash Worship about a year and a half ago at Emo's in Austin, Tx. Emo's was packed. Emo's contains an outside and indoor stage. Everyone went to the outdoor stage, but my friend and I believed they were playing inside. The indoor stage had equipment sprawled across it. The show was billed as The Crash Worship Marching Band. The anticipation escalated, I had never seen them.

Enter the sound of drums

The few people inside, turned to see a marching filing inside of Emo's.......

Thunder filled the air!


All at once, seven drummers began pounding their drums while four girls led them with batons and whistles. They reached the stage where a few of us stood. Emo's was wall to wall with a crazy mass.

the music stopped, the band looked at everyone from the stage.......

Perfectly timed, the drums exploded again, and the girls tore off their tops. The entire show was drums! I can't recall much of what happened inside. I really stopped thinking logically and acted purely on instinct. Instinct told me to dance. The drummers seemed like Energizer bunnies gacked out on speed. While they played, the topless girls poured wine, glitter, syrup, flour, and all sorts of crap all over us in the front. Everybody in the fucking house danced their ass off. Not MTV kinda dance, like tribal shit. Movement to the sound suppressing any kind of thought.

I don't know how long this went on. But the band filed out into the middle of the room and everyone danced around them. Then they preceded outside of Emo's onto Red River. So did the entire audience. Lots of clubs and bars stray across Red River, and they all vacated to see the crazy mass of people dancing in the streets. Naked women standing in truck beds, the marching band standing on cars, and 500 people forgetting they were part of society. This went on for roughly 15 minutes. About 20 blueboys on horses arrived with teargas, so the crowd dispersed. Cops reminded us really quick about sanity. The only thing I can say is, go see Crash Worship. Throw concert etiquette out the window and enjoy!

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