Temptress at Rockit (120 Church), Friday (May 16). Attendance: 10. Tickets: $5. Rating: NNN Rating: NNN
There's something a little hedwig about watching a tranny play to an empty room. There's an element of tragedy. It can't be helped. It just seems like guys go to a lot of trouble to stuff themselves into women's clothes and do the makeup and the hair just so. Then nobody comes to see it. Ouch. Temptress have played the Bovine a few times and always managed to have a few people in the room, but this foray into a new setting was an interesting experiment. Would Queen West hipsters make the trek to Church and pay a cover? Nope.
The new Rockit has seen better nights since reopening under new management and, if it survives, will be a decent venue. Visually, the room is rather blah, an interior designer's nightmare, with a stage and absolutely nothing else to look at.
Hopefully, a little seating will work its way into the plan, since even though the place was totally empty I still wound up sitting on a wall. Not everyone is willing to stand for hours.
But the sound is good, and a view of the stage can be had from almost any angle. Far too many Toronto bars have pillars and crap in the way. Staff is friendly and drinks reasonable.
I was intrigued by Temptress's "sex, drag and rock 'n' roll" sales pitch. Drag queens on a stage usually amuse me, and Temptress was no exception despite the dire turnout.
They didn't seem to give a fuck that the room was empty, and played it like a rock arena, though not necessarily all that well. Vocals - especially the wailings of Chrissy Snow-gone-bad look-alike backup vocalist T-Rock - were often cringingly off-key, and the rhythm section was sloppy as all get out.
But it didn't really matter. The covers were good choices for what the band is: The Time Warp, Little Sister, a few Ramones tunes (though I am sick to death of Ramones covers).
T-Rock's spastic-cheerleader-at-a-fetish-party dancing, coupled with Temptress's funny banter, works well as far as the amusement factor goes. Tunes were straight-out rock and roll, with lyrics often pertaining to fucking.
There you have the sex, drag and rock 'n' roll, as promised. As usual, it was a surefire combination.