Bands show shorts at concert

By Sara Pecora

Local bands Colonizing the Cosmos and Meeting of Important People set the tone for Halloween… Local bands Colonizing the Cosmos and Meeting of Important People set the tone for Halloween weekend Friday night, throwing a Halloween Costume Ball Double Feature at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts in Shadyside.

After a brief mixer, Josh Moyer, lead singer of Colonizing the Cosmos and the literal ringleader (he and the male members of his band were dressed as circus acts), led everyone into the tent attached to the building. This was the biggest problem with the show: it was much too cold to be outdoors.

Moyer welcomed everyone, and then proceeded to introduce the first of two faux-horror trailers made by the bands. One was the brainchild of Colonizing the Cosmos member Michael Savisky. It was a throwback to the ’50s — a purposely overacted, campy little piece called “I Married a Musician” about the horrors of being a rocker’s wife. It got quite a few laughs from the audience and was a great way to start off the night.

Meeting of Important People came on shortly after, its members dressed as Ghostbusters. The trio played some of their more well-known songs, like bouncy pop track “Brittney Lane Don’t Care,” as well as some newer ones, like an indie tune they referred to as their “Pitchfork song” — “They gave it 3.5 stars out of one,” joked lead singer Josh Verbanets.

The group rounded out the set with a surf-rock cover of the theme from “The Munsters”and a punk cover of a song by The Screaming Weasels.

After a brief interim, Verbanets came up again to introduce his trailer, “One.” It was a hard-action short about the government giving everyone one “free” murder and the moral struggle of one man deciding whether or not to use his. Though it didn’t seem to be as intentionally humorous as the previous trailer, people laughed at this one as well. Despite the audience reaction, it was a thought-provoking idea and a well-executed trailer.

Colonizing the Cosmos’ set started off with the hauntingly tragic “What Left Me Stranded,” about a stranded astronaut on a lifeless planet. They continued through with tracks like the soft, lilting “Moon Shine Moon” and the happy, bouncy “The Phononauts.”  The band prepared to wrap up their set with their eponymous “C the C,” but suddenly broke into “We’re Off to See the Wizard,” a nod to their female backup singers’ costumes of Dorothy and Glinda, before performing the actual track.

Finally, the two bands came together to cover “The Time of the Season” by the Zombies, a psychedelic-pop song, which was the perfect cap to a wonderful night.

All in all, these two bands know how to throw a great shindig, and I look forward to going to more shows of their in the future — hopefully they’ll be indoors.