GWAR is War

Shock rock has seen its fair share of gory characters, but they're all tame in comparison to GWAR. Known for its wild stage theatrics, which include homages to necrophilia, scatology, bestiality, rape, murder, carnage and lots of other things that could give Tipper Gore types a heart attack, GWAR has little concern for political correctness or even the mere possibility of being censored. They've got a message to convey, and it centers around enjoying filthy shock rock, having fun and taking life less seriously than society suggests. Based in Richmond, Virginia, yet constantly on the road, GWAR is notorious for spraying audiences with imitation pus, blood and, yes, semen—all in the name of entertaining/freaking out the crowd. None of this takes away from the grit of the music, however, which is always high-octane thrash metal of the highest caliber. GWAR is easily one of the most recognizable groups in the history of rock based on its larger-than-life gothic costumes and face paint. In that sense, it can be accused of aping KISS, at least as far as the outfits go, but Gene Simmons as an outrageous lead singer has nothing on Oderus Urungus. Slum dogs, unite!
Tue., Nov. 25, 6:30 p.m., 2008