This Weekend In New York: Parts & Labor Bid Farewell, Seapunk Washes Ashore

Debbie Allen

Next, we returned to 285 Kent for a night billed by Jelly NYC as "Gender Blender II: Seapunk Raev," which despite its name included some rock acts as well; psych-pop group The Pharmacy was especially impressive, if not very seapunk. Looking around, I spied some young-looking kids with green hair getting down to the techno playing in between acts. Glowsticks, water bottles, dilated pupils, plastic crustaceans... was this nu-rave microtrend taking over the youth of New York?

Instrumental band Starscream might not explicitly identify as seapunk, but their twinkling 8-bit loops had an underwater quality that the raver kids seemed to like. (And, as a member of one of the bands explained, "the good thing about seapunk is it can be anything.") Augmented by live drums and processed guitar, their compositions possessed a similar type of energy to those by weirdo-electronics godfather Dan Deacon, with the crowd jumping up and down each time they hit something resembling a chorus. Beers were thrown, crowds were surfed, and young couples made out all over the place. Spastic projections of stars, spaceships, triangles and pentagrams further excited the crowd.

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