That Time I Went to See Huntress Live (Also, a New Music Video)



It’s rare that seeing a band live makes me like them less, but that’s what happened with Huntress at Saint Vitus in Brooklyn last month.

Usually it’s just the opposite. Case in point, Battlecross, sharing the stage with Huntress that very same night. Went into the show a casual fan from a distance — not really here nor there, but definitely dug a few tunes from their two albums — and left feeling totally amped up on them. NOW I get it, this band is just SO much fun live! It’s a party and we’re all invited, smiles all around, just let loose and have fun.

I went into Huntress’ set with an open mind. It’s easy to make fun of the way the band (and their handlers) exploit Jill Janus’ sexuality, but the songs are solid enough and she’s got great pipes, no one can deny her that. Maybe she’d come out and RIP IT, put on an awesome rock and roll, win me over. I’d give them the benefit of the doubt not having ever seen them play live.

But it was not to be. Jill Janus wears a hooded cape thingy on stage and creeps and sidles around like a dolled up female version of Count von Count. I kept waiting for her to shed the cape, the way Rob Halford comes out on stage in full-body leather armor and gradually disrobes, but it never happened. She kept this insanely corny, completely over the top, cringe-worthy “vampiress” acting shtick going the entire time and it was just… embarrassing. Completely embarrassing. Embarrassing for every single person in the audience and embarrassing for her, because she’s the only one who doesn’t seem to get just how embarrassing it is. If Janus came out in ripped jeans, a Harley Davidson t-shirt and just fucking ROCKED without all the pretense I’d totally dig it. Maybe I’m just too old and jaded to understand the appeal of her gimmick.

So, that happened. Here’s Huntress’ new music video for “Zenith.” The song certainly isn’t bad and it’s an interesting visual piece to watch, but I just can’t view it in a positive light after seeing the band play. Oh well.

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