Well, Seattle, this is your first and last chance to catch ESG in the flesh. The legendary Bronx group's calling it quits after 45 years of energizing dance floors with their exhilarating, stark funk. Formed by four Scroggins sisters (including vocalist/guitarist Renee, the sole original member still active) and their conga-playing buddy Tito Lebran, ESG led with deep, FUNdamental bass lines, irradiated guitar spray, punchy drums, peppy congas, and Renee's take-no-shit vocals. Their '80s recordings are seductive, party-starting, and empowering, all stripped-down and optimized to make you get loose. Do not mistake ESG's simplicity for basicness, though. They've honed their rudimentary music to a hedonistic science, one that's influenced many artists in the decades following ESG's initial burst of creativity: Bikini Kill, LCD Soundsystem, and Tussle, to name but a few. ESG's 21st-century songs slap, too, if not with the revelatory zing of their early efforts. Regardless, this show—featuring Renee plus Nicole Nicholas (bass, vocals), Nicholas Nicholas (congas, hand percussion, vocals), Mike Giordano (drums)—should be an exciting farewell to an essential group.
by Stranger Writer Dave Segal