Mutant Renegade Zine

"Show Reviews Issue #10"

(All reviews by Grog unless otherwise noted)

Choose the band name:
Buck-O-Nine, Voo Doo Glow Skulls & Link 80
Candlebox & Brother Cane
Chamberlain
Cherry Poppin' Daddies, The Pietasters & Spring Heeled Jack
E.Y.E. & the Screaming Mutants
Goo Goo Dolls & Buffalo Tom
Knapsack, at the drive-in & I Have Mass
Bob Mould & Varnaline
Wally Pleasant
Reverend Horton Heat, The Amazing Crowns & Flat Duo Jets
Jon Spencer Blues Explosion
Sub-Humans & SS-20
Mike Watt, Caustic Resin & ?
The Will, The Dopes, Unlessseldomhas & Burnt Toast

WALLY PLEASANT
9-10-98
The Dailey Grind (Dayton, OH)

I found out about this show at the last minute. Actually Gail stopped by my house and told me that she heard that Wally was playing at the Grind. I called down there and found out that he was on stage. So I ditched my plans to go to 1470 and headed off with Gail to see Wally.

The Grind was packed and Wally was on stage playing his great homorous acoustic songs. He's been compared to Johnathan Richman and Mojo Nixon which is a pretty good discription to me, except that Wally's songs are a lot more in tune to gen-X people and apparently Y judging from the crowd. He played songs from all five of his releases and the whole crowd loved him. His onstage banner was constantly entertaining, plus he conducted a Bingo game throughout his sets (we came late so we missed out on getting boards, dammit!!).

The whole show was recorded by Flyer radio (99.5 FM) who were also the ones responsable for bringing him to town. I got a chance to speak with Wally and found out that he truely is a great guy (he put up with me without whincing) plus he is as wity and intelligent as his songs make him appear.

One great show I'm glad I was able to catch, I don't even regret not dancin' the night away at 1470. I saved money and had a lot more fun.

THE SUB-HUMANS - SS-20 - RAW POWER
9-16-98
Bogarts (Cincinnati, OH)

Maria from Blue Ghost set me up with two tickets to see the Sub-Humans, who I never got to see since they broke up so long ago. I've seen Citizen Fish a few times, but now I was going to see Citizen Dick and Trotsky's original band. So I got over to Gail=s house and waited for her and Johnny Death to both show up. The show was starting at 8 and we finally left Gail=s at 8 to head down to Cincinnati, knowing we would miss at least one band.

When we got down there we walked up and Bogarts actually had me on their list, years ago there were always problems with their guest lists. Outside there were tons of punkers hangin' out, so I figured it would be pretty packed. It was a pretty weird scene inside since it was all ages. There was a mixture of old punks and young punks who weren't even in first grade when the Sub-Humans broke up.

On stage SS-20 was playing, so we bought beers and stood on the floor. Their set of decent standard hardcore was soon over and we headed back to the bar area. Gail saw a few old friends and John saw a person who fucked him over (she shall remain nameless). Then we headed back on the floor for the Sub-Humans, since they had just started.

They broke into their great ska influenced punk songs and about half the crowd was skanking, pogoing or at least be-boppin' around. I finished my beer and headed off into the thick of the crowd. I spent the remainder of their set rotating between the pit and standing in the second row. The crowd was a lot of fun and it was great to be back in a real punk pit, with everybody helping each other out and watching out for the people not participating in the pit. There was a bit of crowd surfing, but they kept heading into the pit, which is a bad place to surf. I returned to John and Gail covered with sweat and when they did an encore I got John to join me in the pit. He left soon however since people kept pulling on his long hair.

I didn't really recognize many songs, since I haven't heard them for quite a while, but you could definitly tell that this was where Citizen Fish came from. After the show we got invited to the free show at Sudsy's. We hung out for a while, then some band started playing. I listen to one song then went for a walk outside. I ran into a few old friends and meet some people, then just enjoyed walking around the city at night. I love doing that, it=s so exhilerating (some people call it dangerous). Then I ambled back into Sudsy's to find Gail and John bored and waiting for me, so we headed back to Dayton.

BOB MOULD - VARNALINE
9-18-98
The Newport (Columbus, OH)

I headed up to Columbus with a few old friends to finally catch Bob. I've missed so many chances to see him over the years that I was told to not miss this one. Actually this is one of the few reviews I'd do after having paid for a ticket. (Wah, Grog has to pay like everybody else.)

We arrived in Columbus after a scary trip in my car (I warned them that a Metro isn't the best vehicle, but would they listen...) and made it into the Newport. Varnaline was playing when we came in. They had a rock / alternative / country sound and I thought that they were really good. I spoke to their road manager and mentioned some of the bands that Gail's into (Whiskeytown, Todd Snider...) and he did say that Varnaline would fit into that catagory. So if you like that stuff check out Varnaline.

After a bit Bob came on stage with his four piece band. I haven=t heard his new album, but all previous bands of Bob's were three pieces, so I found it odd that he had a second guitarist. I think most of the songs were from the new album so I didn't really recognize many of them. They sounded similar to his early solo and Sugar songs, but a bit happier. I wish he had played more of his older songs, but I'm sure he's pretty sick of playing them after all these years.

All in all I thought it was a good show and I=m glad I finally saw Bob, maybe next time I'll hear his record beforehand.

CANDLEBOX - BROTHER CANE - SECOND COMING
9-30-98
Bogarts (Cincinnati, OH)

Gail and I took of for Bogarts with plenty of time to see all three bands, but thanks to three traffic jams the trip took an extra hour and a half. We arrived at Bogarts at about 9:30 and then they couldn't find our tickets. After a few words they finally gave me two passes and we headed in to catch the last four songs of Brother Cane.

We headed up close to the front and watched Brother Cane play some good solid rock. I was impressed and thought they put on a good show (Yet another example of why I trust Gail's taste in music). Gail and Johnny Death caught them a month or two ago up in Huber Heights and said it was a great show plus she interviewed them (look for it elsewhere in this issue).

After their set we moved back to the bar and watched the crowd. {I did this shopw sans alchol due to a bad binge over the weekend} Looking at the crowd I remember why I stopped listening to and going to rock shows. They are idiots and most are pretty disgusting. I just kept shaking my head while I was in the crowd due to the stupidity of the majority of the crowd. Some examples: the idiot who was holding up his middle finger while the spotlight was on trying to make a silouette on stage (not realizing the angle made that impossible), the dorks pumping their fists off beat to almost every song, the old guy next to me who tried to put on and off his hat in time to the bass drum beat, the guys who kept grabbing girls asses and getting slapped, the people holding up lighters for the encore while the road crew was tuning up the instruments...

Anyway Gail meet up with Greg right before Candlebox started playing. We went on the floor but got seperated. After about 7 decent songs they played that new lame ballad of their so I went for a drink in the balcony where I meet up with Gail and Greg. Then I headed back to the floor and they did some pretty cool things. They played part of "Shout at the Devil" by Motley Crue, then announced that their rythym guiatrist is Chrissy Hynes little brother. A bit later the played "the End" by the Doors. Candlebox's singer didn=t sound good on it but part of the way through the singer from Second Coming took over and did a great job. They talked about how the old management at Bogarts sucked (very true) and the singer even did a political talk about Cincy and their back-ass ways at the end. Candlebox also played my favorite songs by them, which sounded great and threw in parts of a few other cover songs here and there including "Synchronisity" and "Go Your Own Way". After the show I meet Gail and Greg outside. Evidently they left early and checked out Julianna Hatfield who was playing at Sudsy's across the street.

Overall it was a good show, but due to the traffic I didn=t really get to see much of Brother Cane or any of Second Coming. Candlebox had it's moments, but Brother Cane was more consistant with the few songs I saw. A fun show to just listen to standard rock. Now if they could just get rid of most of those fans...

KNAPSACK - AT THE DRIVE-IN - I HAVE MASS
10-10-98
Bernie=s Distillery (Columbus, OH)

This was really cool since I got an offer to see the show from both Knapsack (Maria @ Blue Ghost) & At the Drive-in (Michelle @ Fearless Records). I like both bands so I knew it would be a good show. I headed up to Columbus with Teri, Dayton Buzz website queen, since she was back from Virgina for the week. We got up there pretty early and hung around High St. taking in the sights, sounds and smells. It's so much more interesting than Dayton.

Anyway, we made our way up to Bernie=s by 9:45 and found there wasn=t a guest list yet since the bands hadn't arrived. We got in anyway and just watched people for a while and listened to their great jukebox. The crowd was pretty interesting and we soon noticed it was an all-ages show thanks to all the young teens milling about making me feel really old. Sidenote for music trivia geeks: I heard Bernie's is now owned by Tony of Pet UFO & Burnt Sienna Records fame.

First up was I Have Mass, who I assume is a Columbus band. They played a great short set of melodic punk / hardcore music that had most of the crowd on their feet and jumping around. They had one of the most powerful female drummers I=ve seen and the bassist and guitarist / singer held their own as well. I'm glad I got to see them and hopefully I=ll hear a recording from them sometime.

On second was at the drive-in. My freind Sebby had told me they were great and she wasn=t kidding. They took to the stage with reckless abandon and kept the crowd energized and transfixed the whole set. They had a great emo-core sound and would sound right at home on Dischord Records. Their great build-ups and mellow moody bridges really pumped up the energy in the whole place. A great band that never stopped moving the whole show.

Once they finished, Iggy and the Stooges "Raw Power" came through the sound system. I haven't listened to that record for a while and it was great hearing it between sets. Soon Knapsack was on stage. They started off with a slow powerful number that had everybody in the crowd groovin'. Next they burst into one of their faster songs and it just totally rocked. Their singers voice is unique enough to keep it very interesting along with the great melodic punk / hardcore / rock / alternative music that was mingling about. The lyrics were very upfront and were full of meaning and emotion. I recognized quite a few of their songs from their "This Conversation is Over Starting Right Now" CD and they sounded even better live. A truely great band that Mite did a lame review for.

MIKE WATT - CAUSTIC RESIN - ?
10-20-98
Lil= Brothers (Columbus, OH)

Somehow I=ve missed Mike Watt for every time he=s played locally over the past 10 years no matter how much my friends have pleaded with me to go. This time I made sure I would be there, especially since Nick said I had to regardless of any excuses. We got to Lil' Brothers early and found out it is where Stache=s moved to.

The first band (whose name I forget) came on and was, lame. Nick had an interesting theory about them. He thinks they were five guitarists who got kicked out of other bands. Then they drew straws to pick who=d play bass and drums. The other three played guitar and not very well. The drummer and bass player both looked uncomfortable with their instruments. Overall we wished we had shown up late, or got caught in traffic.

Caustic Resin came on next and were way better than the first band...but that=s not hard to do. They were heavy and droneing. We thought at first they were doing a shotty imitation of Silverchair doing a shotty imitation of Nirvana. Then they started a pattern of playing slow two chord songs, followed by fast two chord songs. This just wasn=t the best opening for Mike Watt. Mite reviewed their CD in #9 and the band he reviewed seems nothing like the band I saw. Either one of us is way out of wack or the band has changed since their last release.

Soon everybody gathered close to the stage to get ready for Mike Watt and the Black Gang. They had an interesting setup where all three of them were positioned close to the edge of the stage. They took the stage and broke into "The Punk Rock Opera" and played it the whole way through. I have listened to Mike in various bands for about 13 years and have always been in awe of his bass playing, seeing him live is mind-blowing. He attacks his bass like no other and gets the most amazing sounds out of it. He totally controls every aspect of his sound and can go from soft gentle strums to gut-busting thumps within a second. The guitarist was also amazing and made good use of several "toys". At one point he used a plastic raygun to strum his guitar and when he'd fire it there were some great sounds coming through his pickups. He also used a spring and a wire whip at times. The drummer kept up with all of it, but since I don't know much about drums that=s about all I can say.

Once the Punk Rock Opera was over they ended up coming out for two encores of four songs each. They played some older Mike Watt songs and a few covers from what Nick said, but I didn=t recognize them. After the show Mike stood on stage and sold CD's and T-shirts which I don=t know of any other band on a major label does. I spoke to him briefly and he is as nice as everybody else says he is and very true to himself and music. Also when I handed him a copy of the zine and said I publish it he said "Much Respect", that just made my week. Even if that is a standard phrase of his when he recieves something it really made me feel great to have Mike say that to me. When all's said and done I'm happy to know there are poeple like Mike out there. If you want some great music buy any and all of the releases from any of Mike=s bands: Mike Watt, fIREHOSE and the Minutemen.

E.Y.E. - THE SCREAMING MUTANTS
10-24-98
Rileys (Jamestown, OH)

This was a mutant renegade outing. Mite, Gail and I journeyed to Brookville (small rural town) to see E.Y.E. play. It turned out to be an odd little bar where they have karaoke, it seemed to be the main hangout in town. E.Y.E. had signed up for this "special" deal where these people from Tennassee would videotape two of his songs and make sure they got played on TV. (We were voting whether it was a scam or not). So after a few really bad country covers, E.Y.E. took the stage and performed two originals. Several poeple in the crowd liked him, some danced and others were just confused. All to soon E.Y.E. was done and he sat with us. Then came more country covers, the next two people were both very scared looking, petite, blonde girls with big hair and blue jean skirts (my old friend Big John told me never to trust a girl in a blue jean skirt). Each sang some country song with a half smile, vawery voice and a "deer caught in the headlights" stare straight at the camara...or should I say camcorder.

then right before two large men started playing a stripper appeared since it was some guys 40th birthday. She gave him a lap dance and show. Almost the whole bar watched, except us. She was a lousey stripper, a bad dancer and her body wasn't toned at all. Gail went by the camara (yes the videotaped it) and made did a dance in front of it until they yelled at her. Then right when she was on all fours and crawling to between his legs, Gail threw a zine and it landed right on his crotch. We thought it was great, but she got pissed. I was dared to yell "Hey, that's my wife" on a redneck voice. So, I did and a redneck turned around, shook my hand and said "Hey, buddy you're doing a hell of a lot better then the rest of us". Gail then dared me to run through the crowd and announce that the stripper is really my transexual brother. Since I didn't have a death wish I just yelled it from behind the crowd. Evidently I used to many sylables since they failed to react.

After hearing more lame singers we signed up for Karaoke. Gail and I were going to do the Jeffersons theme, but they kept skipping over us. So looking deeper into the book she noticed "Surrender" by Cheap Trick. I signed Gail, Mite and I up for it and gave it to the girl running the show. After a while it seemed like we were once again being skipped. So I went and asked the lady when we were on. She smiled and said "You can be next honey, do a good job". They had no idea what was about to happen. Me, Mite, Gail and E.Y.E. all grabbed microphones and set into the song. Gail and I pogoed and E.Y.E. just stood behind us laughing. Once the lyrics started I tried (and failed misrably) to impersanate Johnny Rotten, Gail and Mite just screamed and E.Y.E. kept laughing. Halfway through the song Mite and Gail had their mics taken away so I shared mine a bit then ran around the bar getting in peoples faces and rubbing guys on the head. I knocked over a few chairs and was then trapped by a waitress who was yelling at me from behind and the blonde lady who glared at me and said to give back the damned microphone (she wasn't all smiles towards me anymore). Then the cut off the song and we decided to make a hasty exit before the turned into a lynch mob. Mite and I headed to the door to chants of "You Suck, You Suck". Once outside we noticed that Gail and E.Y.E. were still inside. I went back in and the crowd had calmed down some, but I got a few glares. Soon we all got out of there and made a promise to visit more karaoke bars together. Watch for the Screaming Mutants karaoke bar tour coming soon.

CHERRY POPPIN= DADDIES - THE PIETASTERS - SPRING HEELED JACK
10-27-98
Bogarts (Cincinnati, OH)

I=ve been looking forward to this show since it was first announced since I like all three bands and I missed Cherry Poppin= Daddies at the Warped tour because I whimped out and left early. Luckily this time the roads were clear and me and Kim made it to Cincy on time. I went to the ticket window and not only did they actually have my tickets, but I also got a back-stage pass. (Mucho Gracias Scott)

We got inside right after Spring Heeled Jack started playing. They were playing their great power ska and had almost half the crowd pogoing. I liked them a lot better live then on CD. Seeing them live captured that "something" which was missing on their record for me. I meet one member of the band later while he was selling t-shirts and he was really cool. They seem like a great bunch of guys.

When the lights came on we looked around at the crowd. It was a pretty diverse bunch: some swing-heads, some punks, some skins, some ska boys & girls, some rockers and a bunch of other people. Everybody just seemed to be having a great time and enjoying the show.

Soon the Pietasters came on and played a great set of their smooth traditional ska. I have to rate them as equals to the Specials, truely one of the best ska bands around. Quite a few people were skanking and once I finished my beer I headed off for the front. Up front almost everybody was skanking and pogoing. It was a blast and the Pietasters were just incredible. I recogized most of their songs from "Willis" but the played some new songs as well. After their set I finally made my way back to Kim. Then I tried to get back-stage but was denied. Evidently a pass at Bogarts is meaningless. However I knew the guy running the backdoor from a band years ago and he let me run out to my car to get some copies of the zine to pass out. Then I ran into the Pietasters guitarist and we talked for a bit.

Then with zines in hand I wandered through the crowd, I put some near the backdoor (for the bands) some on the T-shirt table and put the rest at the front door. By this time the Cherry Poppin' Daddies had taken the stage so I bought my last beer and joined Kim. We stood pretty far back and watched some great swing dancers nearby. I started dancing to the music and noticed that only about five of us were dancing solo while watching the two couples dance. I soon finished my beer and once again escaped up front. Up front it was great, not many couples swing dancing (no room) but most everybody was moving their bodies. The Daddies played most of the swing songs off their latest, plus they played several of their ska songs. This seemed to confuse quite a bit of the crowd who thought CPD was just a swing band. (People really should pick up their older releases where they play many styles.) Anyway, the played a great set and they sounded terrific. I know all the poeple In was near were totally into the music and moving their bodies about. Well, except for several guys who stood with their arms crossed then got pissed off when their girlfriends started dancing with me. Note: If you go to a show and don=t dance but your date does, don't be surprised if they turn their attention to someone who is dancing.

At any rate I had a blast at this show and loved all three bands, plus I meet some great people and passed out quite a few zines. So we said goodbye to Cincy and made the boring ride back to Dayton. As a bonus we got stuck in a traffic jam for almost half an hour at one in the morning.

GOO GOO DOLLS - BUFFALO TOM
11-20-98
The Newport (Columbus, OH)

This was a show I had been anticipating for weeks. Gail and I headed up since she loves the Goo Goo Dolls as much as me. We arrived late due to traffic and parking since the next day was a football game. So we only saw the last song of Buffalo Tom=s set. I really liked it, but since it was only one song I can't say much about them.

Gail and I scanned the crowd and realized (or assumed) that most of the crowd has probably only heard their three big hits: "Name", "Iris" and "Slide". If they hit Cincy on the next leg of the tour maybe we'll interview people about their knowledge of GGD. Yes, we are so cool since we=ve known about the Goo Goo Dolls for years...

After a couple of pictures the Goo Goo Dolls hit the stage. They started the set with "Dizzy" and by the next song we were both about 30 feet from the stage finishing up our beer. When they played "Slide" the crowd went crazy as we expected. After slide Gail manuvered her way up from and I followed along. They played a good variety of songs from: Jed, Hold Me Up, Superstar Car Wash, A Boy Named Goo and Dizzy Up the Girl. They never did play "We are the Normal" which bummed Gail out since that is "her" GGD song. But nonetheless it was a great mix from most of their albums.

At one point I started throwing Mutant Renegade Zine buttons on the stage near Johnny. He finally picked one up and read it into the mic. Pretty cool, at least he didn't whip it into the crowd. However, he was being a "rockstar" and co-ersing girls to lift their shirts. Several threw their bras onstage, which is one thing I've never really understood. But Johnny seemed to enjoy his powertrip. They played around a bit onstage and mockingly introduced "Name" as the song they thought would end their careers. Overall the showed that they are still one of the best rock bands around. They have fun, play songs they like and don=t take themselves too seriously.

A great show that I'm glad I went to. But I still don't understand that girl who was humping my leg from behind while her boyfriends arm was around her waist...

REVEREND HORTON HEAT - THE AMAZING CROWNS - FLAT DUO JETS
12-4-98
The Newport (Columbus, OH)

I've wanted to see the Amazing Crowns ever since I first heard them this Summer. They didn't play the portain of the Warped tour I went to and I missed the Rev since I was doing interviews. Luckily Kathy (who has one of the sweetest phone voices I have ever heard) was able to get me two passes so off I headed with Superchunk Steve. We made it up to Columbus with time to spare and stepped into a fairly empty Newport.

When the Flat Duo Jets came on stage we were confused since there were three of them. We thought it had to be another band but evidently on some songs they have three members. They played some decent rockabilly but didn't really seem to be getting into it. The bass player just stood there and for the most part they were just boring. When the bass player left on two songs things picked up and I liked them better as a duo. Overall they were ok, but I think it would have been about the same if they just pumped their disc through the sound system.

So, Steve and I stood around, drank more beer, looked at all the rockabilly freaks and got ready for the Amazing Crowns. They used to be called the Amazing Royal Crowns until Warner Brothers sued Velvel (Amazing Crowns label) since they said the name was too similar to the Royal Crown Review. Soon the Amazing Crowns hit the stage and took over. They were blasting full of rockabilly energy. They sound a lot like the Cramps except the singer has more of a rockabilly style than Lux. After about four songs we finished our beer and hit the floor. Some people started a rockabilly pit, so I took this as a que to sneak way up front. The Crowns were full of energy and played about everything off their Velvel debut. The singer made mention of the lawsuit and said that just for the record "We ain't no swing band, this is rock and roll baby". Then they left the crowd tired, sweaty but wanting more.

Finally after watching four roadies try to look busy for half an hour the Rev took the stage to deliver his sermon. As soon as they launched into their first song he had the crowd captured until the very end. The Rev and Jimbo both pulled, plucked and made the rockabilly sermon come alive. Just about everybody in the crowd was jumping around to the nonstop rockabilly sounds. The Rev was all over the place: standing on Jimbos bass, leering at the girls in tight shirts at the front of the stage, making love to his guitar and just covering the stage. He told a great story during "Psychobilly Freakout" and had great introductions for each member of the band. Also, Jimbo is the only stand up bass player I've ever seen who can throw his bass up in the air and catch it, very impressive. Even stranger is that I read he used to be in an industrial band that I love called Sister Machine Gun, from Chicago.

It was a great night for rockabilly and I think just about everybody loved the show. It made me want a stand up bass even more...

BUCK-O-NINE - VOO DOO GLOW SKULLS - LINK 80
12-13-98
Bogarts (Cincinnati, OH)

I knew I was in for trouble when I walked in the door. They checked my ID and said "Wow we have a drinker!". I went in and noticed that I was one of the few people inside old enough to drink. I had never heard of the first band so I hung way back on the floor. About halfway through their set I made my way up front and pogoed around to their great ska-core sound. They played really good energenic ska, but nothing that really stood out above and beyond the fourth wave. I liked them and they seemed to be having a blast. After their set I meet their guitarist and he gave me a CD to review.

I wondered around for a bit and handed out MRZ buttons. Then Buck-o-nine came on and I headed right to the front and got caught in the front reaches of the skank-pit. Soon I noticed the guy from Link 80 up front with me. I've only heard two songs by Buck-O-Nine and they played both. However, I liked their other songs even better. They were one of the best ska-core bands I have ever seen. They went crazy on stage and just tore the place apart with sound and energy. "My town" is their best known song, but it seemed like most of the auidiance know almost all their songs. Some songs just totally raged into all out hardcore fury. Great.

Finally it was time for the almighty VGS. This tour marks thier 10 year anniverary and you can tell by how tight they are. The played their unique brand of Mexican flavored ska-core, and sang occassionally in Espanol. VGS was one of the first ska-core band I ever heard and has remained one of my favorites throughout the years. Once again I was on the front fringes of the pit. I spent my time pogoing, slaming and skanking through their great set. They played around a lot and seemed to play songs from most of their releases. Members from other bands joined them onstage to skank and it just turned into a big party.

This was a great show and a real ska experiance. I highly recommend all three of these bands, especialy live.

JON SPENCER BLUES EXPLOSION
12-16-98
Bogarts (Cincinnati, OH)

It's 1973. You're standing in a magnificent, huge, pink velvet room in Graceland. It's a party. Iggy and Bowie are sitting off by themselves on an enormous pink couch in a corner of the room making fun of Lou Reed's boots. You've heard that John Lee Hooker is here, but he and Joey Ramone disappeared into a brass-plated bathroom with a lot of mirrors about an hour ago. A huge movie screen is showing "Plan 9 From Outer Space" on the wall behind the band.

That band is The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion.

You are actually standing in Bogarts, and it is December 16, 1998. There=s a very skinny man, clad in silver pants, a disco-ball of a shirt, and white patent leather grandpa shoes, standing atop the P.A., screaming something about his "Babayah". On the other side of the stage is a dark man, looking none to friendly, standing on top of his vintage Fender amp, doing something inhumane to his guitar. In between the two of them is an enormous shock of hair, slumped over an impossibly tiny drum kit that is doing it=s best not to shatter into a thousand tiny pieces.

Antique radio-wave synthesizers scream, as you stand helpless in the church of the Blues Explosion. If you missed it may God have mercy on your rock-n-roll soul. {superschunk sTEve}

CHAMBERLAIN
12-17-98
Canal Street Tavern (Dayton, OH)

I was supposed to review this show with Gail. However, being the nice guy I am I changed plans the day before the show and went to pick up Fen and Grant at the Columbus airport. Of course the flight was delayed and due to this I missed Chamberlain since the played first, even though they were headlining. So here is a snippet of what Gail and Johnny Death thought of the Indiana boys.

Johnny Death and I saw these Bloomington boys at Canal Street Tavern this Winter and they are an energetic and emotional band. Johnny said that the lead singer sounded like Bruce Springsteen. "The Moon My Saddle" is an introspective record of the young man growing up. The songs are very strong lyrically. There are many great lines like " I haven't smiled in a long time, but I=ve learned to look impressed, learned to lose my dreams I had when I was at my best." . {Gail}

THE WILL - THE DOPES - UNLESSSELDOMHAS - BURNT TOAST
12-19-98
Metropolis (Flint, MI)

Yes, I drove to Flint to see a show, but only because it was the Will. The Will is a band that my band used to play with until they broke up several years ago. I kept in touch with a couple of memebers but suddenly Jim emailed me and told me about the show. I knew I had to go and since Fen had just returned from LA we decided to make it a total reunion (ex husband and wife seeing ex bandmates).

I decied to rent a car knowing that my Geo just wouldn=t make the trip considering how hard of a time it has just getting to Cincy. So we set of in a nice car with pleantly of CD's and much to talk about. When we finally got to Flint, two "nice" guys offered to "watch" our car in exchange for a few dollars. (Welcome to Flint) We said we were broke and proceeded inside. I felt bad but be told the bouncers about our "car protecters" and I assume they cleared them out. Once inside we headed upstairs and meet our old friends. We soon decied the time was right to drink. We bought a beer and a mixed drink and were surprised to hear it cost less than $5. The bartender was very cool and I thought she was cute. We ended up tipping her quite a bit during the rest of the night since she deserved it.

We looked around and noticed that the place is really cool, with an alternative dance club and a few pool tables downstairs and a big place for bands to play upstairs. Burnt Toast was first up and played to about 30 people. They were a really good punk-pop band that=s been together for several years. I think if they were in any other city they would have at least 150 people at their shows. They put on a great energenic show.

Next up was either unlessseldomhas or the dopes. All I know is that I survived about two songs by each band before I headed downstairs to play pool. I noticed that within 15 minutes most of the crowd had joined me downstairs. After I was downstairs the sets were way better...they had cool music playing downstairs and I played a few games of "slop" pool. I actually made a few good shots, thanks in part to my "pool coach" (I totally forget her name, but I thought she was kinda cute).

After that horrid mess the Will took the stage without a hint of bloodshed. All four took turns singing as they burned up the stage with their unique Flint fueled punked out roots rock. Evrytime I hear them I think about: beer, Harleys, beer, fights, beer, sweat and rock. They remain one of my favorite MidWest bands who died way to soon.

Afterwards in true Flint tradition they took us out to eat, to a party at Jim of Rats of Unusual Sizes fame, then Matt (The Will=s bassist) let us crash at his and Lisa=s (his girlfriend) place. Another great trip to Flint and well worth the drive. Flint has some of the coolest people I have ever met. I love the city, but I=d never move there...

MRZ #10

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Last Updated 12/24/98.