The Death Set opened for Girl Talk at the Gargoyle, playing a short but energetic set that culminated in a display of what may be the only and greatest recreation of Master Blaster occurring in music today.
Johnny Siera and friends brought the party early, bringing a rowdy set of dance punk madness that found the frontman just as likely to be on the floor among the crowd as he was on the stage.
With no photo pit in the small venue, I crushed up against the stage along with the rest of the crowd, a decision that found me up close and personal to guitarist/singer Johnny Seira and bassist Matt Papich. In between ducking the swinging headstocks from their instruments, photographing these two made for good practice of the next and final set of the evening.
The lighting for this show was actually quite bright for the most part and saw the Gargoyle turning on all the stage lights. The yellow and green lights dominated the color mix and generally made for a warm, dirty cast for the performance.
Surprisingly, there was enough light to shoot at f/4 and ISO 1600 without having to use entirely marginal shutter speeds, which hovered around 1/100 second in the brightest light.
As with the following performance by Girl Talk, the close proximity of the performers made the Tokina 12-24mm f/4's range perfect for simultaneously taking in a wide field of view and pushing the performers back. At 12mm, the ultra wide angle allowed me to photograph both Seira and Papich with their instruments, all without cutting off the stocks splaying in opposing directions.
While the f/2.8 aperture of the Nikon 17-55 would have allowed for faster shutter speeds, the added cover of the Tokina was invaluable for this short and furious set.