PUERTO MUERTO – Drumming for Pistols (2010)

During the cruel isolation of both the pandemic and Chicago winter, I’ve been reflecting on some of most memorable live music shows I’ve attended because goddamn I miss live events and thought for a brief moment I’d be able to return to them. I can safely say there aren’t many more memorable than PUERTO MUERTO’s final show.

PUERTO MUERTO was a Chicago-based husband and wife goth/americana band that released five albums before imploding around 2010. I discovered them via their last album, DRUMMING FOR PISTOLS, then heard about them performing a final live show at the legendary dive venue Empty Bottle, and I was all too happy to attend.

While I had suspected that there was some sort of strife between the two — rarely does a band explicitly declare a final show — their performance was extraordinarily combative. They closed with the titular track of their last album and I exited the club feeling like I’d witnessed the razing of a relationship. I’ve seen a lot of intense shows over the years, but Christa Meyer was so amazingly, brazenly, cathartically angry that her performance still resonates a decade later.