Ann Arbor Weather:
Saturday December 07, 2019
Follow us: facebook twitter RSS feed


Naughty and nice

by Stephanie Kadel-Taras

From the February, 2003 issue

The first thing you notice at a Dangerville show is bassist Delilah DeWylde. Whether she's in vintage minidresses or a French maid costume and fishnet stockings, her black Bettie Page hairdo and deep red lips warn you she is not to be trifled with. And just wait till she balances on her tilted upright bass, one high-heeled foot planted on the edge of the instrument and one delicate long leg lifted into the air, all the while slapping out a mean walking bass line without ever cracking a smile.

You'd almost laugh at the contrivance of it if she weren't so convincingly entertaining. The only distraction from my enjoyment of this Grand Rapids-based psychobilly, cowboy-punk, rhythm-happy dance band was the fear they might be living life as hard offstage as they portray themselves doing in their act.

"Danger" - the songwriter, guitarist, and front man who force-feeds the life into this band - isn't an instantly likable character, what with his angry vocals, copious tattoos, flaming guitar, and black stompin' boots. But he offers all he's got on stage, especially from those steel strings, which can tingle like Les Paul's or grind and groove like Chuck Berry's.

A hard edge permeates Dangerville's 2001 CD Necessary Evil, but so does that comic amusement. "Find Me a Woman" bounces along like a two-step beer-drinking song. "Can't Wait" is flavored by Jack Leaver's Hawaiian-style pedal steel. "Something Wicked" is sung with a nod to Elvis and toe-tapping George Thorogood lines. And other songs mix Dick Dale surfer guitar with pressurized punk in the style of Shadowy Men from a Shadowy Planet (with Johnny Ominous also on guitar).

If you don't pay much attention to the lovesick lyrics, the songs feel like an invitation to party. And party they did at the show I saw at Ypsilanti's Elbow Room. That night Dangerville attracted a rockabilly retro crowd, with boys in sideburns and girls in tight skirts and bobby socks who

...continued below...

occasionally twisted hips in pseudojitterbugs to the relentless beat of drummer Lee Harvey Biltwell. (Hey, I just report the names as I get 'em.)

Obviously Dangerville has figured out that characters can help sell a band. But the music delivers too, especially when the group's stage act ends with a rousing, breakneck rendition of the Clash's "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" And before you leave, keep an eye on Delilah as she twirls that giant bass and picks it up like a guitar, still pounding out a rhythmic strut. You just might find danger looking awfully attractive.

Dangerville returns to the Elbow Room on Saturday, February 15, as part of a four-day "Ladylike Fest."     (end of article)

[Originally published in February, 2003.]


Bookmark and Share
Print Comment E-mail

You might also like:

Arthur Sze
The Infinite Now
Keith Taylor
Bill Knapp's Is Back
The restaurant's bakery favorites live on in Saline.
Tran Longmoore
Nightspots: Rumpus Room
U-M Libraries
Matthew VanBesien
Charting the cultural course at UMS
Linda R. Benson
Restaurants with Diapering Facilities
A clickable zoomable map
Friends In Deed's Holiday Bed & Crib Drive
Join us in our mission to ensure that no person has to live without a bed
a2tix (sponsored content)
Restaurants - Family
Turning Back the Clock
A former Ann Arbor priest's sexual abuse case is dismissed.
Michael Betzold
Crossing the Border
After inching along for decades, the Border-to-Border Trail is racing toward the finish line.
Cynthia Furlong Reynolds
One of the finest university art museums in the country, UMMA holds collections representing 150 yea
Vicki's Wash and Wear Haircuts