Page 2 of 2
Also, Pyro attracted a suburban crowd, something downtown's drinking holes, for all their neighborhood-hangout charm, don't often accomplish. "The Pyro brought a crowd downtown that hadn't been coming downtown, and they came to see good live music," Barton says.
On the flip sides of the same coins, though, the Pyro's far-out musical selections and outside-of-the-nightlife-district location contributed to its economic malaise. "You don't get the traffic like you do in a midtown club," George says. "And at midweek shows, you didn't get your support of people going out to see bands.
Barton offers hard numbers to support George's theory. "Mad Trucker Gone Mad played to three people," he says, citing one of "dozens" of examples when quality groups played to an empty house on a weeknight.
Financially, Parr might not have had much of a choice but to sell, but that knowledge didn't make the transaction an easy one. "I was really excited about the energy that was going in there, especially right after the Foetus show," she says. "It was a hard decision to make as fast as it went, but it was the right decision for me."
As Parr says, the sale was a quick one -- spanning about ten days from beginning to end -- which resulted in a string of last-minute notices. The members of Moaning Lisa might have been anxious to learn of the suddenly historic nature of their upcoming show, but their emotional reaction couldn't compare to those of Pyro's incensed employees, who were informed on Thursday that the upcoming weekend would be the club's last hurrah. Barton says they had the option to cross over to The Pub, but all declined that offer.
"A lot of people are really sad, and the employees were not very happy," Parr says, "but I've had a lot of responses like 'I saw a really cool show down there; thank you. I wish it could have continued.'"
"Godsmack meets Rage Against the Machine meets Creed": If this hypothetical combination seems like an experiment gone horribly wrong, then Shiver, the group that supposedly possesses this post-grunge/rap-metal DNA, might not hop your bunny. Still, for those who think this combo sounds promising -- and those strong enough to cheer the successes of area acts regardless of their personal musical tastes -- this Kansas City-based band offers reason to rejoice. Coming fast on the heels of Explosion 9's participation in Ernie Ball's Battle of the Bands, Shiver's selection as a contender for the Jim Beam Rock Band Search marks another victory for a previously unheralded outfit.
"We heard about the contest through a radio ad on [KQRC 98.9] The Rock," recalls guitarist Jason Nokes, giving a rare assist to a station local musicians often criticize for not playing Kansas City-spawned discs. Given that three of its members live in Kansas, Shiver opted to enter that state's region, which might have earned it a tougher draw. Jim Beam classifies Kansas as a Northwest state, meaning Shiver has to take on a representative from the still-fertile band-breeding ground of Seattle. The group also faces a hometown favorite when it squares off with a Denver representative at the regional finals at that city's Hard Rock Cafe on Thursday, July 19, but favoritism shouldn't be an issue.
"The judging is based on musicianship, songwriting, appearance and marketability," recites Nokes, who views these criteria as a welcome change after having competed unsuccessfully in an America's Pub Battle of the Bands that considered crowd response all-important. "It's nice to be judged on what you're doing. I guess even if you get booed off the stage, you still have a chance."