The American Wake Tour

While everything is fresh in my mind, I want to talk to you guys about an incredible experience I had last night.

By far, Terrance Zdunich’s most popular work has got to be as Graverobber in Repo! The Genetic Opera. There are very few of my friends who have not seen it or heard of it, and Terrance’s velvet smooth bass voice is hard to miss once you’ve heard it. An ex actually turned me on to the movie, and I ended up seeing it in Indianapolis when they did the 5 year tour. This was my second time meeting TZ.

After Repo, we saw him touring a project lovingly titled The Devil’s Carnival, and it’s sequel, The Devil’s Carnival 2: Alleluia. All the Repo fans FLOCKED to the tour dates. I first met Terrance at a showing for The Devil’s Carnival in Dallas. Once you meet this man, he’s unforgettable. Aside from his voice, he’s just an all-around genuinely nice guy. My third time seeing him was at Alleluia in Columbus.

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God, we looked so god damn high

Now, all three works I’ve mentioned are movies. They set up in the same little theaters that house Rocky Horror Picture Show midnight shadow casts and let us all share in the beauty of these movies together, with people in costume and singing together the songs we’ve all learned and love. At the showing of Alleluia, though, they started talking about a new project: American Murder Song. I certainly had no clue what to expect from this project of TZ and Saar Hendelman, but once videos started popping up on YouTube it was ever apparent.

Given the fact that this was no movie and was indeed a series of short EPs, when they announced the tour I was once again left with the mystery of what they could be bringing to their loyal fans this time.

Set in the 1800’s, the songs are of murders on American soil. They portray a motley cast of characters, from Sweet Rosalie and Pretty Lavinia to Unwed Henry and Quiet Johnny. Some of the songs are quite upbeat despite their morbid topics, while others can only be described as haunting (here’s looking at you Lullaby).

But when it came down to the show, I was so impressed with how they did it. American Murder Song didn’t quite get the same following that TDC or Repo got, so there weren’t as many people as I had expected. But it was such an intimate gathering with Terrance and Saar on stage in front of us with just a banjo, an upright bass, and a violin. We sang, we joked, and we just overall had an amazing time. They’re still touring right now, so go check for tour dates near you and get ready to crash a wake!

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