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While some say the live music experience of 2007 unequivocally belongs to those two helmeted French dudes and their pyramid power, a dark horse in the running for the most talked about show this year is a band you might say is the diametric opposite.[rssbreak]
As opposed to the Close Encounters enormity of the Alive tour, a Spartan and blasting stoner rock trio, who just recently played Sneaky Dee's - at least their third date in Toronto this year, has most witnesses of their mayhem inevitably saying "you have see Monotonix!"
When first attending one of their tornado performances I was left mouth-agape and wondering how any band could put themselves through such carnage nightly - their health and safety sacrificed for spectacle and the audience's lusty appetite for chaos. Such commonplace elements to their assault include: bylaw-breaking fires, acrobatic climbing of venue's sound gear, drummer perching kit on bar, audience hoisting all three members as they play, among others endangering act.
Not only have Monotonix absolutely dynamited the wall between audience and performer; they're breaking ground on another level - Jews who can seriously rock. A recent Spin article discusses how boys at yeshiva schools look up to chrome-domed Disturbed frontman David Drainman as a rock messiah. Disturbing indeed, when you consider a band like Monotonix is on the scene. Drainman's rep as yeshiva school bad ass has given him cred amongst yarmulke-clad lads, but his band's processed brand of nu-metal is like the egg bread and white fish to Monotonix's delicious lox bagel.
And while we're on the subject of Jews who kick ass in rock, shouts go to Chromeo's Dave 1 for his recent strides and of course the indelible punk legend NOFX's Fat Mike (aka Michael Burkett), whose White Trash, Two Heebs and A Bean along with the anthemic The Brews remain untouchable entries into the ongoing Jewish History of Rocking Out.
Check Monotonix's MySpace for remaining summer tour dates.