It was one of those clubs where you go and you stand on your own, and you leave on your own, and you go home and you cry, and you want to die. But Death in June was playing there, and I had never seen them in concert. So I decided to temporarily interrupt my exile from California (roughing it in Jackson Hole) and descend again to the sinful cities of the plain.
I very much enjoyed seeing Death in June live. This time the band consists of Douglas Pearce on guitar, vocals, and percussion and John Murphy on drums. Unfortunately, I am used to classical music, so the use of amplifiers is intensely annoying to me. Murphy’s drums were far too loud in the mix, sometimes overwhelming Douglas P.’s voice and acoustic guitar. Frankly, given the texture of most of the original songs, I would have preferred more of an “unplugged” arrangement. Murphy should have been confined to a snare drum and brushes, except on such tracks as “We Drive East” and “Heaven Street.” Fortunately, I came prepared with silicone earplugs, which, when adjusted properly, took the edge off the oppressive drumming.
Technical reservations aside, hearing Death in June was a surprisingly moving experience. The 34 songs they played are mostly found on their two-disc best-of collection DISCriminate, plus five or six songs from their recent release The Peaceful Snow, four songs from All Pigs Must Die, “Ku Ku Ku” from But, What Ends When Symbols Shatter?, “The Death of the West” and “We Drive East” from Burial (among others), and I am sure one or two that I am not remembering. Hearing all these songs together led me to reflect on how much Death in June means to me — and how deeply these songs have dyed my soul after listening to most of them for well over a decade.
The best-performed tracks were “Little Black Angel” (based on a Jim Jones/People’s Temple hymn, but DIJ turns the “Little Black Angel” into an SS man) and “The Death of the West” (the last film, which stars the kids from Glee and all the monkeys in the zoo). My favorite songs were “But, What Ends When the Symbols Shatter?” and “Heaven Street.” And although I can’t complain about the set list, I really wish they had added “Leper Lord” and “We Honor the Silence.”
The doors opened at the club at 9:00. Thank the gods we arrived after 10:00, as Death in June did not take the stage until 11:30. I estimate that between 500 and 600 people were present, many of them fighting sheer boredom before the concert started by fondling their iPhones or making repeated trips to the bar. Conversation was difficult due to the loud music and silicone earplugs, so I found a comfy sofa and dozed off for a spell.
Although Death in June has been around as long as Dead Can Dance, the audience at the Death in June concert was much younger, on average, than the two Dead Can Dance concerts I have attended in the last year or so. The audience was overwhelmingly white, although there were some Asian couples (one pair clearly knew most of the words). The audience seemed to be about equally balanced between men and women. Although there were too many tattoos, especially on the women, and a number of hairstyles that invaded my personal space, I was struck by the high percentage of good-looking, well turned-out white people in the mix. (I was the guy in black.)
Douglas Pearce is, of course, something of a National Socialist, and he has declared his views openly in his interviews and somewhat obliquely in his songs. I wondered what percentage of the San Francisco audience was aware of his sympathies. I think the percentage is quite high, if only due to the consciousness-raising efforts of the “anti-fa” anarchists who chronically harass Death in June.
I also wonder what percentage of the audience in San Francisco actually sympathize with National Socialism or White Nationalism more broadly. Judging from close semiotic readings of physiognomies, hairstyles, clothing, tattoos, accessories, Nazi uniforms, and Sieg Heiling, I would say there were a few. But the main reason to like Death in June, of course, is the music, and I am sure that the solid majority of the audience were there for that alone.
Douglas Pearce is also openly gay, thus to avoid the mortal sin of homophobia, the local anti-fa declared that “queers” were to “shut down” the San Francisco Death in June concert. But it didn’t happen. I am sure that a few anti-fa could be bothered to phone, tweet, and email protests to the venue. But when it came time to show up at the club, apparently the Bay Area’s queer anarchists stayed home to wash their hair.
Judging from the audience, however, if the queer anarchists had showed up to protest, they would have been outnumbered by the queer fascists inside. Based on the couples I saw, most of the audience was straight, of course. (Even in San Francisco, the vast majority is straight.) But within a six foot radius of where I sat, there were two gay couples and one lesbian couple, and they clearly knew their Death in June, mouthing lyrics and shouting out song titles.
What this means, politically, is an open question. But any signs of cracks in Jewish-led anti-white coalition of homosexuals, feminists, environmentalists, and liberals should be welcomed by White Nationalists.
I highly recommend seeing Death in June on tour. But don’t delay, because the tour is short. Only six concerts are left: Austin (Sept. 14), Chicago (Sept. 16), West Palm Beach (Sept. 17), Brooklyn (Sept. 20), Salem, Mass. (Sept. 21), and Baltimore (Sept. 22). (For more information, click here then scroll down.) The venue for the Salem concert has pulled out due to anti-fa pressure, but the band is trying to find a new location.
See them for the music, or just see them because it pisses off our racial enemies, but see them.
For more information on Death in June, visit their website: http://www.deathinjune.net/index2.htm