The Dirty Little Heaters
Local 506, Chapel Hill
Saturday, Feb. 20
Plenty of bands commemorate their CD release with a special show—top-notch openers, an extra-long headlining set and a surprise guest or two. With its release party for Champions of Imperfection—five years in, the band’s first full-length—The Dirty Little Heaters did all that and a lot more.
After fellow Durhamites Pink Flag and Red Collar—whose new material sounded terrific, by the way—got things started, Magic Mike, the night’s emcee, gave a brief history lesson on the Heaters for the unacquainted. After some technical difficulties—“It’s always something with you,” singer/guitarist Reese McHenry’s bandmates chided—McHenry was joined by drummer Melissa Thomas and the duo (the original incarnation of The Dirty Little Heaters before splitting in late 2006) blasted through the raw punk of a couple of early Heaters tunes. Check “Cherry Van” below the jump.
With Dave Perry taking over drumming duties and bassist Rob Walsh and keyboardist Doug White tagging along, the Heaters skipped straight to version 2.1, which served as the line-up for the latter half of 2009. Covering much of Champions’ garage blues ground, the seven song mini-set featured a lumbering take on The Beatles’ “Yer Blues” that segued into “Amelia” before ending with “Untitled,” the hard-hitting Perry’s final song as a Heater. Here’s the album’s psychedelic title track.
Finally, new drummer Jessica Caesar—you may know her from Pink Flag—had a brief turn behind the kit, adding a more dexterous approach to a pair of new tunes, though she still pounded the skins without mercy on the roaring closer “Mexico Way.” For the ever-evolving Heaters, the night marked both a fond look back and a promising peek at what lies ahead.
One last video embedded for you below, though there's more footage, as always, over on Scan's YouTube channel.