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Hot Hot Heat Concert (featuring Louis IV and the Flesh)

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While some were sitting at home watching American Idol last Wednesday night, many of Minneapolis’ less disenchanted crowd were off at the Hot Hot Heat concert at the Quest. While the crowd consisted of an overabundance of teens, thanks to no age restriction, the bands provided enough heat in their performances to warm even our little neck of the woods.

The night’s opening act were The Flesh, a fierce foursome from Brooklyn currently promoting their self-titled debut. The band failed to disappoint the crowd with goth-pop songs like “Death Connection,” sung by enigmatic lead Nat Halpern.

Following were Louis IV, whose singer, Jason Hill, looks like a cross between Joe Elliot or Simon Le Bon and Robert Smith, whom the latter they also sound like. The band played songs from an upcoming release, The Best Little Secrets are Kept, including current single “Finding Out True Love Is Blind.” Louis XIV sound a hell of a lot angrier live, where songs like “Me Me Me Me” in recordings offer a striking resemblance to Jack White, now become wicked rasps and a real kick to watch.

Hot Hot Heat entered the stage several moments later with another quirky lead, Steve Bays, unusual for his super-sized Napolean Dynomite afro. The band sounds a whole lot poppier than the other two, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as felt on hits like “Bandages” or “Get in or Get Out” from Make up the Breakdown. Bays introduced songs off the upcoming album Elevator, including “Goodnight Goodnight” and “United United.” Hot Hot Heat looked a little cramped on Ascot’s crowded stage, a setting the Flesh homed earlier on in their set. Hot Hot Heat still managed to bring everyone in the Ascot Room a little closer at the sake of emptying the previously crowded bar/lounge in previous performances, making tonight’s show in Minnesota, despite having three great bands, all about the Heat.

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About Crystal Erickson