I’ve only seen Police Teeth a handful of times. Though, really, I’ve only seen them enough to count on three fingers and this time being the pinky. I’m only one thumb away from being able to legitimately state that I’ve “seen Police Teeth a handful of times.”
I’ve been wanting to capture their souls ever since that fateful show at the Echoplex in Bellingham, Washington, where our paths crossed in appreciation of So Many Dynamos. We love that band. Police Teeth only were able to play one song before the cops shut down the event (which was already pretty late in the night) because someone had complained about noise. The noise that they complained about, turns out, wasn’t from the bands (the garage was pretty well insulated) but rather the car in front of the house allegedly blasting hip-hip hop loudly out it’s doors or windows.
I was able to see Police Teeth at the Vera Project in Seattle the next day just to see both bands again. It would be at the Vera I would see Police Teeth play again (with So Many Dynamos) about a year or so later but the last until this moment.
I’m adverse to bars and clubs. I’ve been lightening up about it over the years but it’s a mostly unenjoyable experience even if I’m in the company of people I care about. It’s hard for me to speak loudly and I have to cup my ear to hear most of the time. So I try not to talk. I really never ever have to do this at a house show. Police Teeth’s decision to play at Funny Button came after a show they played at the Comet Tavern on Capitol Hill that they stated would be their last 21+ show. When I was informed of this through a friend, also attached was that they’re ready to play house shows again. Seeing them in any other environment would feel unnatural.
The band knows each other from Bellingham, which has a tradition of having house shows since most of young people there are college students who don’t have access to bars. There were warm feelings in the basement and with knowing that a good proportion of folks in attendance of this show hadn’t seen Police Teeth before, I was remembering the fist time I saw them. Except this time they played a full set and not just one song.—Kenneth M. Piekarski