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Head Trauma / VIVIsectVI Tour '1988

North American Tour Dates (From Capitol Records press release), though more existed:

10.02.88 Vancouver (New York Theatre)
10.05.88 Seattle, WA
10.07.88 San Francisco, CA
10.09.88 Los Angeles, CA
10.10.88 Phoenix, AZ
10.12.88 San Antonio, TX
10.13.88 Dallas, TX
10.14.88 Houston, TX
10.15.88 Austin, TX
10.16.88 Oklahoma City, OK
10.18.88 Minneapolis, MN
10.20.88 Chicago, IL
10.21.88 Cleveland, OH
10.22.88 Detroit, MI (Chud stolen after show, but retrieved later in the night)
10.23.88 Cincinnati, OH (Ogre and cEvin arrested after the show)
10.25.88 Huntington, WV
10.26.88 Columbus, OH

The Centre Bullet from Strasbourg on May 1, 1988 in 192 bitrate MP3. This is from Edward Ka-Spel's set, and was the last song he performed. I believe cEvin Key came out to play, which would then make this a "Tear Garden" live performance:

Kill to Cure from Koln on 27.04.1988:

Dogshit from Washington DC 30.10.1988:


:: setlist ::

Head Trauma Tour: Early 1988 pre-Vivisect release. European dates only.

God's Gift
One Time One Place
Smothered Hope
Kill to Cure
The Choke
Deep Down Trauma Hounds
Glass Houses
Draining Faces


First Aid

Vivisectvi Tour: North American tour to support the release of VIVIsectVI.

God's Gift
Human Disease
One Time One Place
Deep Down Trauma Hounds
State Aid


Smothered Hope

:: concert reviews ::

When i was about 17 i got the chance to see skinny puppy live on their tour for viviSectVI. It took place in a small club called the 'highland' in cambridge, ontario. the opening act was kitten with a whip. the show only lasted 40mins unfortunately but it left a lasting impression on me for years to come and ruined nearly every concert i saw for the last few years afterwards. The show was of course a multimedia event with tons of video/photostills projected all over the wall behind the band with a main video screen off to the right which showed some footage which scars me to this day. One of the main pieces of footage shown on the screen was this ever evolving loop which started out as a single shot of a long white hall way, every so often a man in extreme terror would come running down the hall and stop in front of the camera nearly complete a scream then disappear. This sequence would get longer and more fractured/cut up until he was finally decapitated from behind by some sinister figure which never was seen in full.....the show was loud, so loud it left my ears ringing for about 3 days solid--i thought i was going to go insane by the second day in fact....i remember a small but poignant sign posted on the middle moniter which said : 'ear protection must be worn or hearing loss will occur within half an hour' !.....the show was also extremely chaotic, yet playfull, Ogre was just ripping his vocal cords out as he sang and shot needles full of fake blood into his nose only to snort them out into his hands and smeer the crowd in front which was quite funny since there was much snot amongst the blood...just imagine the horror/hero worship as this was happening it was quite amusing....songs: harsh stone white, assimilate, dig it, vx gas attack and a thirteen minute version (i was looking at the clock ironicly) of love which nearly brought the house down it was so incredible! then during dogshit (i think) the show suddenly got weird: as Ogre was singing he had a butterfly knife which he had used as a prop dangling off the top of his ear ( the empty part of the handle) and as he leened into the crowd a girl snatched it first nothing happened then he leened into the crowd and said something to the girl , supposedly asking her for the knife, he stuck out his hand to demand it back and she bit him on the wrist! he then grabbed her by the hair and hauled her on stage and started screaming into the mike as he pointed at her "YOU STEAL , YOU STEAL , YOU BITCH , YOU FUCKING STEAL''. she refused to give back his knife and as soon as his back was turned she fled the stage and left the building...the show just stopped, everyone was stunned. some people left immediatly including me and lo and behold the girl who stole was getting a royal shit kicking by some other girl who promptly took the knife from her and went back inside to return it to Ogre, i followed to see what would happen but was refused readmittace (so was the girl) she then disappeared to the back of the building and i just decided it was over and went home. (Continued in 1992 section)
I have been on many Puppy sites and I have always seen mentioned the infamous Cincinnati arrest. I live in Cincinnati (grew up here actually) and I was at that concert, the arrest, and the hearing so let me tell the story...

I was listening to Puppy for a few months and I had heard that they were coming to Cincinnati. A bunch of friends were going and I figured 'why not' and bought a ticket. At that point, my whole experience with Puppy was very limited; I had Mind, Cleanse, and I think Bites. And I was not very familiar with those albums at that point anyway. The show was in late October, 1988 at a club here in town called Bogart's. I was pretty familiar with the scene (remember, this was 1988 and bands like Puppy were very much on the outter-fringes). I went to the show thinking that it would be just another concert. But just from the look of the crowd, I knew I was in a new league.Goth was everywhere. The color of the day was black; black clothes, black Docs, black hair, and lots of black eyeliner. Aside from the promo on the marquee, I had never seen a picture of Puppy so I just assumed that they would follow suit - sort of a Robert Smith on a bad day look. The venue was packed - say 2000-2500 people. It was, of course, an all ages shows. People were talking and dancing (one young boy was dancing non-stop even with no music - very, very stoned I presume). The opening band, well, I do not remember much of them. In between bands, Puppy music played over the PA. People were calling out for their favorite song. The curtains were closed and the music over the PA wasn't that loud. Suddenly, the whole hall went pitch black and the opening to Fritter started to play (very loudly too, I might add). The curtains opened and there was nothing but lots of smoke and lights. So much in fact, that you couldn't really see anything. As the smoke cleared you could make out Cevin and Dwayne on either side of the stage. In between them as a large screen over the back of the stage. In front of that was the Head Trauma 'contraption' that was covered by a white sheet. On the left front of the stage was a cutting board standing on four legs of simple plumbing pipes. The music was increasingly louder by the second and the crowd was going crazy. Immediately from Fritter God's Gift started up and the pit started instantaneously. Ogre walked out from the left side of the stage with a ball cap on backwards and a cigarette hanging out of this mouth. He came out just in time to reach the mic and start with God's Gift. People always mention the effects that Ogre used and they were very evident at this show but believe me, that voice is really his. I kept thinking 'Shit, that's gotta hurt his throat'. You couldn't really make out Cevin or Dwayne very well; Cevin's hair was down in this face and Dwayne, well, you know what his hair was like. During God's Gift and guy walked out looking like a butcher with a welders mask on. He was carrying Chud and just dropped down on the cutting board. Let me say this right now - Chud did look VERY real and it was disturbing but it was only a show, right? Ogre walked over and started petting on Chud, trying to get him to stand up or hold his head up. Finally, Ogre picks up Chud and starts carrying him around. Remember that Ogre has a life-size dog, a mic and a cigarette to hold so he kept repeatedly burning holes in his t-shirt or burning Chud. As the girl mentioned in the other review, Ogre did play around with a butterfly knife but he also played with a piece of mirror (used to slice his stomach open), scalpels (used to perform the vivsection on Chud), and entrails (yes, I have every reason to believe that they were real). Slowly, throughout the show, more and more of the Head Trauma device was being exposed from underneath the sheet. Throughout the show there were videos and stills on the screen. I do not remember anything about a hall or a man running. I didn't really pay that much attention to it. But I do remember pictures of people that were badly burned or disfigured and videos of experiments (one in particular of a monkey being bashed in the head - very explicit).

The show was great needless to say. A bunch of us went backstage and hung out for a while to see what was up (it helps when your brother is security at such a venue). It was unreal - everyone associated with the group was just hanging out really - no one seemed to be in much of a rush to do anything. Pot was VERY, VERY heavy in the air. We met Cevin, Dwayne, Ogre, Rave and some girl who really had no idea where she was at. The dressing room was pretty much off limits (I assume that this was attributable to all the herb being burned) but people could still mill around in the hall. All of the sudden there was a lot of commotion from the other end of the hall near the entrance to the hall. Three cops and three other guys (undercover I presume) came barrelling through the hallway just pushing anyone out of the way. They charged into the dressing room and just started shit. They demanded to see the dog that 'butchered' and killed'. The band's manager said that there was no dog killed. The cops again said that they wanted that 'goddamned dog' and the 'son of a bitch' that did it. Cevin (I think as I was now down the hall) said something like 'do you have a warrant?' The cops at that point went ballistic and arrested Cevin. The whole time they (Ogre, Cevin, the manager, and the cops) are going back and forth arguing. The band saying that they (the cops) had no right to arrest anyone and they have no warrant. The cops saying that they were going to close down the show. Dwayne actually was in the room and basically walked right past the cops with a roadie - I have no idea how he got away with it - he just walked right by them (I think that he did this basically because he was very quiet and, in the commotion, the cops probably never noticed him). Finally, Chud was presented to the cops by a roadie but they were hell bent to make a bust now. Cevin, Ogre (who was still a complete mess as he did clean up after the show), and the tour manager were escorted out of the dressing room and through the venue. There were still a few folks outside waiting for the band and basically saw the whole thing. The guys spent the night in the Hamilton County jail and were in front of a judge the next morning, I do not remember the judge (who has since moved on) but I do remember that they each tried to argue the whole situation but were cut off by the judge. It was a open and closed hearing. They were fined a little bit of money and released within the hour. They immediately left and headed to the tour bus. I believe that I can obtain a copy of the small article in that days Cincinnati Enquirer (that would make a great little addition to your already perfect site). They was a very big deal a couple of weeks later here in Cincinnati as a guy was stomped to death a King Diamond show at the very same club.

I have not idea who or how the cops were called - everyone seemed to be pretty cool.

I thought that that would be the last time Puppy played Cincinnati but I was surprised to hear that they came back fro both TDP and LR. I was put of the country and missed TDP. I wish I would've been there - it sounds like their best tour. I did see LR and it was pretty good - very high tech.

Anyway that is it. Oh yeah, there was a free showing of 'Ain't it dead yet?' a week after the show at the University of Cincinnati where I was a student. At the bottom the poster said "hopefully no one will get arrested this time".
-Mark Glacken
A fair amount of people in the club when we arrived. I didn't buy any of the merchandise, though I'm kicking myself now. They were selling the VIVIsectVI shirt (green/blue x-ray image, like the album cover -- I remember Trent Reznor wore this when I saw the Pretty Hate Machine show at the I-Beam), and a cool poster of the band shot from the inner album sleeve. When we entered the hall there was some goth chick reading angst-ridden poetry, but that was thankfully brief. The opening band was Sons of Freedom, I think. They were lit by a single bare bulb hanging over the singer at center stage. Other than that, I don't remember a thing about them except the crowd wasn't into it. (After the Too Dark Park tour I decided that SP must pick rather bland opening bands in order to heighten the impact of the main show -- I can't even remember who opened for TDP). After the usual wait, the lights went out and fog machines spit huge amounts of fog over everything. Cevin was on the left, with basically the same set-up as seen in AIDY, but on a taller riser. The "head trauma" chair was covered with a sheet in the middle (it basically looked like a scaffold made of pipes), and Dwayne was on the right behind a bunch of keyboards. It was very dark and they were backlit by light shining up from floor level, so with all the fog you didn't seem much at first, but the atmosphere was threatening and the sound quite loud. There was a movie projection in the center of the screen above/behind the band, with slide projections on either side of it. As the first song kicked in, Ogre appeared wearing a long trench coat, ball cap, and headset microphone. He was very amped up and it wasn't long before he lost the headset mic and had to grab a standard mic/stand from in front of Cevin's riser. I didn't recognize most of the material they played because at that time the show occurred BEFORE the album was released. The show then progressed through the mock vivisection on Chud, which has been well enough described I don't think I need to go into it. The dog did look very real, however, and upset my friend's date (well, heck, the entire show upset her). The coolest part, at least to me, was during Harsh Stone White, when Ogre had a large triangular mirror he would hold against his chest, reflecting a spot of light around the hall while blood was poring down his stomach from behind it. The look in his eyes was incredible; it was like you could believe he was about to jump off the stage and grab you by the throat, even if you were in the back row. After a time the sheet was taken off the head trauma chair and he did most of Assimilate in it while wearing an army helmet with a section of leathery mask attached under it. He was then strapped in by a hulking doctor/executioner wearing a welder's mask. During an intense strobe light section for State Aid, the doctor pulls a lever and Ogre is pitched backwards and hung upside down by one ankle, then taken down and strangled by the doctor. Blackout. All leave the stage. Ogre comes back, cleaned up, and they do Smothered Hope pretty much in the fashion seen in AIDY. I remember him saying "Stop Vivisection; it is the last form of true evil left on the earth. Stand together. Stand together! " I don't remember many specifics of the backing film, except that it was graphic violence/horror imagery (surprise), but I do remember a repeatedly looped part with a knife going across a woman's scalp (I would guess it's a scalping scene from the film Maniac, though I'm not sure). In all it was a kick-ass show and certainly made quite an impression as my introduction to SP live.
-Brian Christman


Taken with permission from "The Vault of Skinny Puppy" site.
Updated version by radi0n