Puscifer at the Orpheum Theatre Last Night

Andrew Youssef
December 6, 2011
Orpheum Theatre

Click here to see a slideshow of the performance.

The maniacal brainchild of the mercurial lead singer of Tool and A Perfect Circle, Puscifer continues to evolve and impress. Maynard James Keenan has refined his mashed up mix of partial cabaret and live music concert into a purely entertaining experience. On their last tour, Puscifer played a handful of West Coast dates, but finally made a full trek around the states supporting their highly overlooked new release Conditions of My Parole.

The entertainment bombardment began immediately upon the completion of Carina Round's opening set as a video screen showed a twenty minute sketch of Keenan taking on the persona of Billy Dee dressed in a wig and styling porn mustache. It was sketch comedy gold with double entendres and tongue in cheek references. In order to preserve the sanctity of the show, another sketch had Keenan dressed up as Major Douche to warn patrons that no audio, video or photos should be taken during the show.

As the lights finally dimmed, the barren stage was soon cluttered as Keenan wheeled out a trailer and began to set up a mock campfire. Lightly strummed guitars began to take the shape of "Green Valley," with bassist Matt McJunkins slamming into the mix with a highly distraught bass riff. Keenan's wafted through the Orpheum -- Puscifer couldn't have picked a more suitable venue.

Matching the tempo of the evening, "Tiny Monsters" seduced us with its percolating synthesizers and the synergistic blend of Keenan and Carina Round's vocals. Stretching out and flexing their musical muscles, Puscifer let loose "Toma," which stomped on our faces with its militant beat and Keenan's drill sergeant barking. 

Puscifer shows tend to feature a rotating cast of ensemble players, and this particular version was extremely tight and played exceptionally well. "The Weaver" was almost hallucinogenic-inducing with a swirl of reverbed guitars butted angrily against a buzzsaw of synthesizers. 

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