The room felt like a corset, squeezing the crowd into the Triple Rock last Friday night. The Cure played on the PA while a disco ball spun light circles on those waiting for All the Pretty Horses. Tonight was the goth metal band's final show after a good nine-year run. Venus, the transgender leader of ATPH, walked onstage alone, all smiles, thank-yous, and torn fishnet stockings. And David Bowie: She picked up her guitar to play an excellent solo version of "Rock 'n' Roll Suicide."
"I'm going to miss this band," I said to the guy pressed to my left.
"Yeah," my neighbor said, "no more titties."
Titties. Yup, Venus finally pulled them out, as she does at most shows, and there's no denying her titties are a tractor beam for attention. An ATPH show is always a big production, including a light show and industrial dancing girls like Shannon Blowtorch. Staring at the enormous drum kit, put to good use by Jendeen Forberg, you wonder if it's exhausting to haul around all of this gear. But then, if someone has enough energy to change genders, as the singer, drummer, and bassist have, she's surely not daunted by lugging around an extra strobe light or two. Like most farewell shows, the night featured its share of sentiment, with Venus giving a shout-out to Lynette, her wife of 22 years. And at one point, Lori Barbero grabbed the mic to wish Venus a happy birthday. Barbero fumbled her choice of pronouns--first calling Venus a he, then a she--but recovered by proclaiming that Venus has the best ass ever. Could be.