Around Town

Around Town: Can You Pass the Mushroom Test?

Through the mind’s eye with Fungal Abyss

For four Wednesdays in August, the Comet Tavern hosted Fungal Abyss, a four-piece psych-rock side project by the members of Seattle metal band Lesbian. Guests from the city’s bubbling lysergic scene sat in each week, including members of Master Musicians of Bukkake, Diminished Men and the Curious Mystery, while the Portable Shrines and Dumb Eyes collectives blasted shape-shifting video projections over the band. A two-hour Wednesday night freakout isn’t exactly ideal for plumbing the psychic depths, but it was a good goofy start, and the Comet was the right weird place. 

1 guitarist Aran McInnis and the rest of the band mostly kept their backs to the audience and let the music—and the volume—hypnotize.

2 Drummer benjamin thomas-Kennedy was lit by projections from the portable Shrines collective. At one point he asked the crowd, “Anybody here StoNED?” After a moment of awkward silence came a tiny “Not yet!”

3 Curious Mystery singer Shana Cleveland added ethereal vocals and wan- dered the crowd with a tambourine.

4 Fungal Abyss wasn’t concerned with play- ing “songs” but with launching slow-moving, momentum-building juggernauts of riffage that plowed past the 15-minute mark.

5 Yes, those are fluorescent strings on Dorando hodous’ bass. And yes, that’s his real name.

Photos by Nate Watters