The end of the 5th year and the remainder of the 6th year of Mechanismus were by far its most successful yet. During the 5th year was the first Stalingrad festival which featured over 15 bands over the course of the summer months including Leather Strip, Assemblage 23, and Continues. During the festival was also the introduction of a new Panzer Girl, Luba Pacyga who joined up with Alycia and Indiyana. Indiyana would later move on to other endeavors. We ended the 5th year with a show from none other than Combichrist doing an old school set.
The 6th year began with Shiv-r and God Module and moved along to our 6 year anniversary show with Aesthetic Perfection. Grendel, Alter Der Ruin, and De/Vison also performed during the year alongside Centhron, Stoneburner, and Ludovicho Technique.
What now waits for us in the 7th year?...
By the time we were near our 4 year anniversary, things had gotten rather bumpy for Mechanismus and the Re-Bar. Shows had been double booked without prior communication to me, door people were late, bartenders were unpleasant to work with, and the overall effort from everyone was subpar.
I decided to go and speak with The Highline earlier in the year but didn’t have much of a response from them. I spoke to them a second time near the end of 2012 and finally heard back. They were will to work with us and give us a consistent Thursday night. Our first show was to be in January of 2013. This meant that the final Mechanismus show at the Re-Bar would be December of 2012. The last show had The Gothsicles playing and while they were amazing, the show itself was almost a complete bust as the Re-Bar double booked us with a show prior and thus we couldn’t get in before 10pm to set up. This was probably the first time so far I have completely lost my shit and threatened to kick out one of the Re-Bar staff. To be honest, he was very rude to me so I had every right!
Now came the first show at our new venue, The Highline! The show happened and we had over 100 people show up easily! The sound was great, the mood was phenomenal, and everything finally worked out. The Highline had professional staff whom can actually pour a drink, accepted cards, and served amazing vegan food! Suddenly after one single show Mechanismus grew overnight faster than it had in the 2 plus years it was at the Re-Bar. Having the venue be right in the middle of the bustling Capitol Hill neighborhood certainly didn’t hurt things either!
From here on out Mechanismus also grew quite a bit in social media for promotion purposes. Facebook was central to promoting nights, Twitter was used, and of course good old postering. It was at this point that I decided that we will need to focus primarily on bands and have a dedicated go-go group. And so the Panzer Girls were born. Alycia and Corrine were the original Panzer Girls. I was introduced to Alycia via Nicole (GAK Photography) and Alycia introduced me to Corrine. Both were interested in the concept. Now the shows not only had live music, great food, drinks, and sound but we also had an amazing go-go troupe that was tasked with keeping the dance floor packed and moving. As we went forward a third Panzer Girl, Indiyana, was brought on. Indiyana was very popular among many dance and performance circuits so her addition added a much needed diversity to the troupe as far as dance style.
As we moved into our second year of the "Roger Moore" era of Mechanismus, the shows continued to struggle with hit and miss attendance. I tried hard to incorporate many different forms of entertainment into the shows with mixed results. We had live painters, which at the time was a growing thing in Seattle. We had burlesque dancers, experimental belly dancers, and many other dance acts in addition to bands and DJ's.
As time went on throughout our second year, I came to realize that a lot of the issues with Mechanismus wasn't necessarily the shows themselves but perhaps the venue. Folks like to going to Capitol Hill for shows. Re-Bar was not exactly right on the hill but rather in an isolated nook where there wasn't anything else nearby. If someone chose to go to the Re-Bar that was it. They couldn't bar hop or go to any other venues. The Re-Bar also was cash only and had a very limited drink selection. All of these were faults that were pointed to me by people coming to the shows.
Despite the flaws of the venue, I was stubborn and kept trying to make the shows work. The imagery for the shows became much more aggressive. I had someone walk out because the video on the screen at one of the shows were offensive to him. In a way, If you don't piss someone off, you aren't exactly doing Industrial right. I also worked to get more national acts to play as well.
Going on to our second year anniversary show, which again featured God Module with the now defunct local act "Monicom" we had a mother successful night. Huge crowd and perhaps our best show since the 1 year anniversary. Moving into the 3rd year proved to be once again much like the year before. More hit and miss shows. By the end of the 3rd year we had our 3 year anniversary show which featured Manufactura. I was really excited for this show as it had been nearly 10 years since they played Seattle. Not to mention they used to live in Seattle. The show happened, was great but only about 45 or so people came for it. It was after this show that I started seriously looking for a new venue. I had noticed a venue pop up on Capitol Hill called the Highline. I decided to go and speak with them. Who knows, it couldn't hurt right?...