The show tonight started off with a hearse rally. What’s a hearse rally you ask? It was a gathering of the Coffin Cruisers club of Portland and despite the rain they brought out about 13 hearses of varying age and styles. I didn’t see it until a few had dispersed but pretty cool to see darkening up the otherwise hippie-ish part of town. The show was cool. Missed the first band but Hot Rod Carl was pretty damn good. Antiworld was up third and I thought they sounded a little more rocking than normal. They are quite possibly some of the nicest people we know and we don’t get to play with them enough. Our set was uneventful and that’s a good thing. Pretty solid, no major mistakes, all good as the kids used to say. Sado-Nation was last and really caught all of us off guard. They started in 1982 and completely and totally rock. Seriously the guitar player was amazing and despite being several years older than us (and we’re old) I think they had just as much energy as we did on stage, quite possibly more. Very impressive and I’d like to see them again for sure. Thanks to all who attended and to Mt Tabor and Antiworld get getting us on the show!
Ok, now that was a pretty fun show. I would even dare say it reminded me of the “good old days” of Longview shows. Lots of kids just there to see some decent live music which was a welcome change from the dwindling attendance over the past few years. I guess if you have Broadway Calls in your hometown why would you bother seeing anyone else? I wouldn’t. Anyway, solid lineup, solid crowd, solid show. Bowels? Not so much. One way mule was not what I expected. They had a very diverse sound and lots or refreshingly original guitar parts and sounds that went from radio friendly rock to metal to punk. Pretty cool stuff. It was great to finally see Dead Fucking Serious play featuring Sam and Chris from EPD/This Day’s End. The song were definitely abrasive enough to be worthy of containing the f-bomb in their band name. It was an awful lot of hostility from a frontman short one testicle. Maybe that explains it? Our set was fun. Justin went through broken strings on both guitars and couldn’t work his strap for at least one whole song but what else is new? All in all we had a very fun time playing. Jackmove was up last and killed it like always. I always forget how incredibly bad ass they are until I see them again. They are kind of like Zeke but a little catchier. Very cool night so thanks to the usual suspects who always show us a good time in Longview.
Shows in Salem are always pretty fun and tonight was one of the best ones yet. Unfortunately The Crawlers cancelled which was a bummer since everyone has been saying they are great. Rather than starting later the venue had everyone start early which was a bit odd. Speaking of the venue, the Ike Box is awesome. It was hard to put a finger on what was unique about it but it turns out the building used to be a funeral home. The upstairs décor is pretty creepy looking and the owner said the original equipment is still down in the basement. Next time we’ll have to get a tour. Anyway, we got there at 7:15, loaded in and Accidental Gun Death had started by 7:30. I know I’m getting old because I now get excited by shows that end early. Anyway, AGD was awesome as usual and have always been one of the most entertaining and rocking bands I’ve ever seen. We played second and it was pretty good. People moved and we were left a bag of Swedish Fish on stage so I can’t complain. Nothing too memorable other than Dave announced ‘Lost At Sea’ was about pirates and sea men. Say it fast and you’ll see why it was just a little wrong. The Casketeers were last and it was probably the best I’ve seen them play yet. They have a pretty good following and Salem and it’s cool to see them get the props they deserve. Thanks for all who helped put on the show and those who attended.
We had heard tonight’s venue was off the beaten path and that was no lie. Only Roseburg and possibly McMinnville comes close for the prize of “least accessible Grange Hall”. As usual we arrived late and unfortunately managed to miss the two opening bands. For those in the opening bands, we apologize for missing your sets. We did catch one GGTS song performed by 2/3 of the band which is a plus, because whenever we think about Olympia we think about those guys. Although we were late, our trip up did have one mentionable moment. Actually two. Somewhere around Centralia we got flashed by girls in a passing car. To quote the great poet Sir Mix-A-Lot, “38 D’s will make a man skid”. I can now confirm that statement is in fact true. Sure it took a little prompting from Justin (who offered the subtle suggestion of raising his shirt) but in the end it was well worth the effort. Speaking of huge boobs, we did catch the entire set of The Royal Tees who did a damn fine job of rocking the small crowd. We were up last and highlights included a request and delivery of Pimp Ray, Dave calling things “gay” into the microphone, the crack in the stage that could have swallowed our singer’s leg and someone’s rancid body odor that 3/4 of our band assumed was Dave. Thanks to Kevin for setting up the show the Tees for just being the Tees.
I was a little nervous about this show. We loved everything about Sabala’s and were a little skeptical when we heard they got bought by someone else and changed the name. Needless to say we were very relieved to open the doors and find the place was largely unchanged keeping the same décor, sound system and overall dirty rock bar vibe. Plus, they still have the coolest wall paintings and decorations of any bar in town and that goes a long way for me. Sadly, The Independents had cancelled so we pushed back the start time and kept it a three band bill. The Casketeers were up first and sounded pretty darn good. I’d actually go so far as to say that was the best I’ve heard them play. Very cool stuff and I find the stand up bass with spider webs hypnotic to watch. Eat Your Heart Out was second and in keeping with the theme they sounded pretty amazing too. I’ve always liked them but they really seemed to up the rock factor tonight and sounded really, really good. They played so well in fact that I was a little scared to follow them. Thankfully, our set went well. No real problems to report and everything fell nicely into place which was a welcome change from the previous night’s struggles. Funniest part for us was Dave’s special set list he made up for Justin which included a person’s face (presumably Justin’s) with the words “bla bla bla” and a big circle with a slash through it. This was a well needed reminder for Justin to focus on playing and avoid his well meaning but often indecipherable rambling into the microphone. Anyway, thanks for the Caketeers, EYHO, Dawning and the Mt Tabor as those who stayed up late to support some local bands.
Usually we like Friday the 13th shows. After this one, I’m not so sure. First are foremost we found out that The Independents cancelled due to a family emergency. Total bummer as that’s the reason we wanted to play the show and we were looking forward to a weekend of shows with them. The trip up was also riddled with headaches and bad luck. We knew we’d be getting a late start out of town but we didn’t know the brake rotor on the van would be stuck to the wheel rendering it completely and totally unable to move. With five hours to show time, we scrambled around and wound up cramming all our gear into Justin’s car and Angela’s car which are both Honda Elements. If you aren’t familiar them they are part SUV and part little rolling boxes. At one point Dave wondered aloud if the two vehicles would assemble into a large Voltron like creature? Sadly, it did not. These cars are handy for carrying things, but are not so handy for feeling like a band on a trip as we had to split up into pairs. We hauled ass up to Richland stopping at what turned out to be the dirtiest Wendy’s on Earth. Trash on the tables, squirted condiments on the counters, mashed fries on the floor, oh man it was bad. The bathroom was even worse as the toilet had still fresh vomit and dried feces on it with a puddle of urine in the front. Wow, talk about losing your appetite. We moved on and quickly as we good only taking our drinks and a case of hepatitis with us. Shows at Ray’s start at 10 and we arrived at 9:55. We parked as far away as we could from the door to minimize our visibility with our two yuppie rides. This led for a long walk with the gear but it was worth it. The Elements were shameful to unload from. Better Off Naked was first and sounded good. We only got to see a few songs, but they seemed solid. They played a short set and before we could catch our breath we were on stage by 10:30. Our set was affected by the curse of Friday the 13th too. Although it was passable, I gotta be honest it wasn’t our best effort. Kids moved and sang and that’s always appreciated. I did think for a while the tides would turn on us though when Justin started to ask if anyone saw the Cubs game. Someone yells “fuck sports” and he continues on with “no, really did anyone get the score.” Wow. Amazingly this display of microphone rambling was actually surpassed during our last song when he thanked the opening band, the staff and all the people who showed up. I attempted to gesture the words “thank the other band.” Somehow this was misinterpreted as “Eric needs a rubber band” which he mentioned out loud. Soon people in the crowd start to try and locate a rubber band. He never did thank Schoolyard Heroes and I never got my rubber band either. Sadly, the unprofessionalism didn’t stop there. Dave announced this was our last song only to have Dustin interrupt us all and start insisting we play a few more. My man had absolutely no idea another band was playing after us. Granted they were standing by the stage with all their equipment and had brought in most of the crowd and he was none the wiser. Again I blame the 13th. Anyway, our set was passable … but barely. Schoolyard Heroes played last and they were very, very good. The guitar player was damn near amazing and it further solidified our amateur hour performance. We took off around 1:00 and of course had to split up again thanks to driving two cars. At the first turn out of town we got split up at a red light. I’m not sure exactly what happened to them but Dustin and Justin wound up getting lost and turned around so many times they wound up about 30 miles behind us. Needless to say both of them were quite irritated because nothing sucks as bad as leaving for a 3.5 hour drive and turning it into a 4 hour one. The drive home really did suck. Lots of really hard rain, plenty of puddles, and people driving with their high beams on. We eventually got home and I slept like I’ve never slept before. I’m not sure if Friday the 13th was to blame but it sure is a good explanation.
Despite being a Tuesday and having one of the bands cancel this wound up being a pretty fun little show. Obviously not a ton of people were there but everyone seemed to be into and even moved around a little. Even if everyone secretly hated us, they at least put out the vibe they were enjoying it and that makes us play better. Speaking of which, I thought we played pretty damn well. Sixteen hours in the studio the prior weekend probably helped out. I must admit it was strangely liberating playing first at a show again. We get stuck headlining so often that you forget how nice it is to play early and then just sit back and watch. Usually we’re watching the clock wondering what’s taking everyone so long or whatever other problems or drama will unfold. The Quintessentials were up second and did admirably. I guess it was their first show as a Portland band so that was pretty cool. Zombeast was the reason we took this show and I gotta admit they were pretty cool. It’s hard to avoid Misfits/Samhain/Danzig comparisons but if you can accept it they are a pretty good band. Sounds like it was their first tour which was hard to imagine since the recorded songs I heard were so good. Anyway, all in all a fun show. Thanks to Jeff and the Satyricon and all who attended early on a Tuesday night!
In all of years playing Longview, this was actually the first time we’ve ever played a bar there. Unfortunately it was also the first time we booked a show where there was another show in town happening as well. If you aren’t familiar with the area, the pool of people in Longview that goes to shows is pretty small. Take out the all ages group and you’ve cut out about half the crowd. Then split it in half again for the two shows and you get what we got which was about 20-30 people actually paying attention and wanting to see music. Don’t get the wrong, there were quite a few people in the bar, but most were there to drink, eat Chinese food or watch the UFC night. I’m definitely not complaining though as everyone who stood up front seriously made it a blast. Rick, Cory, Brady, Joel, most of Lung Invasion and a few others we didn’t recognize … I could have gladly played for that small group and been stoked. They were noisy and singing along and made the Chinese Gardens feel like Madison Square Gardens. We even saw Brady’s zombie dance (acts 1 and 2) which is always a plus. We had a totally fun time. Lung Invasion played last and seemed right at home with the increasingly intoxicated crowd. Lights, guitar solos and metal … what more could you ask for? Thanks so much to Nick and Lung Invasion for the show hook up!
It’s not often we get to play in the daylight hours. It’s much warmer and you can actually drive to and from the show in daylight which is a plus. Unfortunately you can also clearly see when people are not impressed with your band which was the case today. The show was a memorial for our friend Hopper who passed away two years ago. A little sad reason for a show, but still a good vibe for everyone. We were late as hell as usual, no thanks to the daylight savings change which apparently was not advertised in the greater Longview metropolitan area as Dustin managed to not get that memo. We loaded in and went for some pizza which took about 30 minutes to find. We would up missed two of the bands we wanted to see which sucked. We did see one band whose name is escaping me and then we setup and tore through and 8 songs as fast as we could. I think we played well but when you want to see Grounds For Assault a band like us doesn’t impress like it should. Speaking of which, those guys totally ruled the school (literally) and were totally entertaining as well. They definitely ended the show on a high note. Thanks to everyone who made it happen. No thanks to Justin and his two hours of garlic calzone belching.
I think this was the smallest Bend show I’ve ever been too. It was still fun but it’s been interesting to see how the turnout there has ebbed and flowed over the years. From 50 people with Thrust all the way up to 400 with Dead Even to the huge Misfits show and now down to 50 again. I’m fairly certain the Domino Room’s price gouging has something to do with this. Last I heard it $650 to rent the room for the night. Nice people and a nice club, but it’s no wonder local promoters have to charge an arm and a leg for local bands. Good news is the show was a blast … for what we saw of it. We missed all the openers including Aces Over Kings whom we’ve played with before. We did catch The Roe and they were entertaining to watch. Not often you see an arena sized show in a tiny club. Our set was highlight free but overall pretty fun. I sort of felt like we sucked at the last few Bend shows and this felt like redemption. Of course on the way out I heard two groups of people say this was the worst show they had seen in a long time. Hope they were talking about the show as a whole and not us. (Of course since they stuck it out we couldn’t have been that bad.) Also on the way out some girl wanted to buy a CD and her male friend dragged her away from the merch table explaining that she shouldn’t ever buy CD’s because it’s “the biggest scam there is”. According to him, buying CD’s is “a rip-off”, musicians make “a ton of money” and you should “download your music for free” to fight the system. I don’t necessarily oppose downloading of music, but holy shit, that was the dumbest fucking thing I’ve ever heard. I bit my tongue but was about one comment away from explaining that we pack up our van that we bought on our own, drove 4 hours over the mountain with our own money, setup our gear, played our balls off, and are about to unload it and drive 4 more hours back home … for nothing. Nada. Zero. Zip. That $3 compilation you refuse to let your girlfriend buy (that we paid $2 for) is the only money we’ll be making this evening. Jesus, what a douchebag. Next time in that situation I will stop to ask myself “what would Dave do?” The answer of course would be put him in a submission hold and throw him out the door head first. Note to self, play less Guitar Hero and more Fight Night. You know, just in case. Ok, I’m rambling. Thanks so much to everyone to stayed late as well as thanks to Dan and Bleeding Through productions for a very smoothly run show.