starring The Epoxies
Sat June 1
It seems like every night that I go out, some lameass party girl is whining about how there is nowhere to dance in this town. Another complaint that comes up constantly is Portland's complete lack of vaudeville-esque drag queen duos that perform skits which may involve molestation, chicken suits, bottle-to-head smashing, and murder, while bands perform in between, later followed by a rippin' dance party with tons of booze on hand. It always seemed odd to me that such a specific and obscure argument should arise so commonly but it only makes the arrival of Pho Bang so much more welcome; not very often does an event fill a void where it did not seem a void previously existed.
Hosted by Seattle's Ursula Android (Marcus Wilson) and Jackie Hell (David Latimer), Pho Bang has filled that void in Seattle at least monthly for over a year. Shaking off stereotypes of uptight homos in tailored dresses and $200 wigs playing diva, Latimer and Wilson started out finding enjoyment in alienating the cliché queens with their lackluster outfits and unorthodox (even for a drag show) behavior. They made their creation complete with the addition of live bands to their own event at the now-closed Foxes in Seattle. The unique combination of hilariously offensive drag-punk performance, live rock music, and art rock/'80s new-wave-blending DJs was an instant success. Pho Bang (named after a karaoke club in Latimer's hometown of Phoenix) ran every Thursday for 59 weeks, right up until the club's sudden closure.
Itself being a wide mix of styles, the event served as a melting pot of the Seattle underground. Stylish kids, punks, dance-loving ladies (etc.), some straight, some gay, all attended in harmonious fucking unity.
Jesse Sutherland of Portland's The Epoxies, who are playing the Portland version of Pho Bang, painted me this picture:
"After we played, they did this skit involving these two hideous drag queens working in a Dairy Queen, that needed to get more young boys' semen for the special sauce they were running out of. That was my intro to Pho Bang."
Mr.. Sutherland is very excited about Pho Bang coming to Portland.