By Dave Pehling
SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Now in it’s seventh year, local psychedelic glam/stoner-metal group Glitter Wizard’s annual Hallorager celebration takes over the Bottom of the Hill Thursday night.
The SF-based glam/stoner/prog band has been bashing out its unique style of over-the-top hard rock for over a decade. Originally formed in Santa Cruz before relocating to San Francisco, Glitter Wizard twists together elements of Black Sabbath, Hawkwind, Blue Cheer and Black Oak Arkansas with outlandishly Spandex-clad lead singer Wendy Stonehenge working the stage in a high-energy frenzy that recalls Jim “Dandy” Mangrum. The band’s enthusiastic fringe-and-leather sporting sidekick “Mercho Man” adds to the onstage entertainment at their live shows.
The group independently released several singles and full-length efforts before putting its third headbanging space-boogie opus Hollow Earth Tour out through Heavy Psych Sounds in 2016. The band released their ambitious follow-up Opera Villains for the Italian-based imprint — appropriately enough — on 4-20 to wide acclaim. Having made appearances at a number of festivals here and abroad including Burger Boogaloo, Roadburn, Desert Days and the label’s first Bay Area edition of their Heavy Psych Sound Festival this past May, Glitter Wizard continues to expand their fan base. Despite the setback of having their tour van broken into this summer at the end of a successful European tour, Glitter Wizard soldiers on in their commitment to keeping heavy rock weird.
Each year on the weekend closest to Halloween, Stonehenge and company have donned a musical costume for their yearly Hallorager festivities, dressing up and playing the music of a different classic prog or punk or psych band. Past tribute subjects have included early era Pink Floyd, the Seeds, the Damned and the New York Dolls. This year, the band will close out the annual party by performing a set of tunes from iconic shock rock heroes Alice Cooper.
The band also puts together the rest of the bill, finding either fellow Bay Area acts who want to play covers of a specific act or, in some cases, local musicians from various bands who come together for a one-off performance. This year, the line-up includes members of hard rock and metal bands War Cloud and Wild Eyes taking the stage as Bitch Class to perform songs by beloved all-female British metal band Girlschool and other ladies of the ’80s and ’70s (Lita Ford, Pat Benatar, Suzi Quatro, Rock Goddess), garage pop-punk band Nobody’s Baby offers their renditions of Joan Jett & the Blackhearts’ classic tunes and SF cosmic-country group Caravan 222 playing the music of the Flying Burrito Brothers. Experimental cabaret/punk weirdo MOM will team with one-man electro-funk crew Chaki the Funk wizard to MC the event and perform as Two Jive Crew, playing the Miami booty bass hits of Two Live Crew with an assist from DJ Oaty Love (former turntable maestro for defunct live hip-hop crew Mackhand and a collaborator with scratch legend DJ Quest on his one-off Quest Quartz Crew project). DJ Shrimp Ripper provides music between live acts at the Bottom of the Hill Halloween night.
Hallorager VII with Glitter Wizard
Thursday, October 31, 8 p.m. $12 in costume, $15 without
Bottom of the Hill