Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s Sell Out Mercury Lounge

October 24th, 2012

Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s – Mercury Lounge – October 23, 2012

A name like Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s is bound to turn heads. The multimember band from Indianapolis ballooned from a chance meeting in a pet store between frontman Richard Edwards and guitarist Andy Fry into a hefty indie chamber-pop outfit of eight members. Making the transition from their early orchestral iteration, the band dropped some instruments for a purer rock sound, which is showcased on their previous album, Buzzard, and this year’s Rot Gut, Domestic. And early last night, Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s tucked into the cozy confines of Mercury Lounge.

Opening with their latest single, “Shannon,” the now sextet covered a spectrum of their catalog highlighting newer material like “Fisher of Men” and “Books About Trains”  to oldies but goodies like the violin-infused “The Ocean (Is Bleeding Salt)” and “A Children’s Crusade on Acid” from Not Animal. At one point in the set, drummer Brian Deck’s snare broke, which Edwards remembered occurring when they played there back in 2006. Once fixed, the band didn’t skip a beat with “Birds” from Buzzard. Edwards chanted, “Let’s have a baby,” and a cheeky fan replied, “Come on, ladies, you heard the man.”

In a quieter moment, Edwards welcomed opening band Gentleman Caller’s Kenny Childers for an acoustic rendition of “A Light on a Hill” from their first album, The Dust of Retreat. Edwards later confessed that “Wedding Song” was a Twilight soundtrack reject written close to the inception of material for Buzzard and according to the band’s Facebook page “will  probably end up on the rarities disc.” And although financial security eluded them (oh, the possibly royalties), money could not buy the fervor of everyone in attendance as they sang along to the set’s closer “Broadripple Is Burning,” before the band returned, rocking out to “The Devil.” Then keyboardist Cameron McGill accompanied Edwards on the final song, “Christ,” as fans were lulled into a woozy waltz of a twisted prayer. —Sharlene Chiu