Sunday night at Art Bar was my fourth time seeing Diarrhea Planet in the last year. Granted two of those were absolutely insane SXSW sets and one was a wild birthday show with Junior Astronomers in Charlotte, but I feel like I’ve seen the band who are known for wild live shows at their best. I could buy a shirt that said “I got kicked in the face at a Diarrhea Planet Show” and be speaking the truth. Sunday night the crowd participation was low compared to other recent shows. Greenville turned out in force at their show at the Radio Room, making a human pyramid in front of the stage, while the Charlotte crowd surfed the entire show at a sold out Snug Harbor. Diarrhea Planet’s first show in Columbia, SC wasn’t quite the same, but they still shredded their way through a set of “songs off their first two albums and a couple of new ones.”
Now I’m not saying that the crowd didn’t enjoy it. After a thin crowd early in the night for the openers, a decent amount turned out later in the night filling in the room for Diarrhea Planet. The four guitar arsenal along with bass and drums filled the Art Bar stage to the max as people filled both the front and sides of the stage. As was to be expected, my podcast partner, and long time SceneSCer Bakari Lebby made a splash, on his knees on the bar at the side of the stage and later on stage singing the bands best known song, although never a single, “Ghost with a Boner.” He spent most the time when he wasn’t singing taking selfies, but it’s 2014 and that’s what you do when you get on stage right? It was a far cry from where I was the night before, dealing with an ornery old songwriter that became national news by being a jerk on stage at Hopscotch Musical Festival in Raleigh, NC. Sun Kil Moon tried to make sure no one used their phones, or made noise, and stayed completely silent while he played. That all sounds fine for a Sun Kil Moon set, but he tried to set that mood in a crowded PBR fueled crowd that had been drinking for at least 6 hours and he ended up being mocked and heckled, which he ended up deserving. The night before that Diarrhea Planet played a show down the street that moved to capacity shortly after they opened the doors around 8:30 PM. D Planet didn’t even go on until 12:30, but the lineup was stacked and included our friends in Museum Mouth opening. The Art Bar crowd wasn’t as high energy as you would imagine a Diarrhea Planet show being, but the crowd was obviously into the band. Some light hearted football talk came through as primary vocalist Jordan Smith teased “Go Tots!” in response to “Go Cocks”, it ended well as someone came up and touched his ermmm, Gamecock, as he responded “that’s the most action I’ve gotten all tour.” I did enjoy the one person that yelled “Anchor Down!”
Columbia, SC didn’t crowd surf for Diarrhea Planet, nor did a band member climb scaffolding or leave the stage, but we did coax an encore and hopefully earned a return trip to Famously Hot Columbia in the future for Diarrhea Planet. I imagine an all ages show instead of a 21+ show next time around will change the scenery in front of the stage a little bit. I stood in the front row in hopes of being a brace for crowd surfers, but instead I stood there imagining shit hitting the fan behind me as I sang along. Maybe next time we’ll make a human pyramid in both Greenville and Columbia.