Posts Tagged ‘Room 101’

Dead Kennedys: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 11-04-84

August 28th, 2010 4 comments

Even though it arrived a few years late in terms of my obsession meter (I kinda lost interest in anything after Plastic Surgery Disasters), this was a big deal for me. In my Grade School-to-Jr. High transition from what I thought of as “New Wave” (Devo! B-52’s!) and “Punk Rock” (Sex Pistols! Ramones!), the Dead Kennedys clearly represented the next step into my emerging sense of “Hardcore”.

Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Dead Kennedys 11-04-84

On a summer trip up to New Jersey in 1982 my cousin Bobby had made me a series of punk comp tapes filled with the heavy hitters of the day: Flipper, Fear, Black Flag, D.O.A., and so on. There wasn’t a loser in the bunch really, but the band I initially found myself returning to (mostly on the strength of Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables) was the DKs.

Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair

Everything about them fell into place for where I was at: their melodies were catchy, their lyrics were intelligent & witty, the art was cool (check halfway down on this page for Winston’s Smith’s very kind response to a gushing fan letter I wrote him when I was 13), their politics jived with my already established views — the whole package just worked for me.

Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair

In June of 1983 I had been living in Oklahoma when they had played the Kansas City VFW, but since everyone I had ever talked to raved about that show my already-bound-to-be-high expectations were now jacked all the way up. Part of a memorable week, the Saturday night show was sandwiched between my first viewing of Eraserhead (Friday at SUA with my pal Doug Redding) and the grim likelihood of Ronald Reagan’s second administration (Tuesday nation-wide and mostly a foregone conclusion). The gig was obviously also pretty high on to-do lists all around the Midwest, and the Lawrence Opera House was super packed with curious first timers as well as the faithful.

Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair

After opening performances from the Micronotz and the Crucifucks (N.O.T.A. didn’t make it), the Kennedys’ set found them working through a number of tunes that would eventually turn up on their Frankenchrist LP. Sadly (as you’ll hear), though the energy was pretty high all night there were rampant microphone and mix issues throughout much of the show. With a set clocking in at about an hour and twenty minutes the band certainly delivered the goods however, and as you can tell from these killer pics snapped by Greg Blair the crowd ate it up.

Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair Dead Kennedys 11-04-84 Photo ©2010 Greg Blair

I have a lot of scattered memories here, so I’ll just run over a few of them and then get to the good stuff:

• Finally getting all of the “Jello acts like a mime” references I’d read in live reviews of the band.

• Getting so excited during “A Child and His Lawnmower” that I would be able to lay claim to “first stage dive of the night” (shoe-loss averted thanks to this also being the “first night I ever wore Converse high tops”)

• Seeing more people hanging out on the sides & back of the stage than ever before (just like those photos of big LA shows from Flipside!)

• Leaving my tape recorder in the hands of my friend Gil Bavel (I was up front for the whole set) and being aghast that he decided to sully the purity of my recording by asking various people “what they thought of the show” (in retrospect: kinda funny. You’ll hear it.)

• The mic totally dropping out and Jello trying to get the crowd to sing along to Holiday in Cambodia (the results were better in the room than what you might be able to glean here.)

• Interviewing the very patient Mr. Biafra & Mr. Flouride after the gig with my chum Pete Haney (who asked the better questions by far). Unlike every other interview I’d done so far this was in a room full of people I had never seen before hanging on his every word. I guess I’d never really seen that kind of “holding court” before.

Okay! On with the show!

Room 101 #7 - Jello InterviewRoom 101 #7 - Jello InterviewRoom 101 #7 - Jello Interview

Room 101 #7 - Jello InterviewRoom 101 #7 - Jello Interview Room 101 #7 - Jello Interview

Photos ©2010 Greg Blair

Dead Kennedys: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 11-04-84 (192 kbps)

01 Intro (1:18)
02 Take This Job And Shove It (David Allan Coe) (1:25)
03 Hop With The Jet Set (2:09)
04 Dear Abby (1:21)
05 Terminal Preppy (1:30)
06 When Ya Get Drafted (2:08)
07 Soup Is Good Food (4:10)
08 This Could Be Anywhere, This Could Be Everywhere (5:49)
09 Chemical Warfare (3:34)
10 Mtv Get Off The Air (3:46)
11 A Child And His Lawnmower (1:00)
12 Jock-O-Rama (6:23)
13 Kill The Poor (3:17)
14 Macho Insecurity (2:06)
15 Police Truck (2:41)
16 We’ve Got A Bigger Problem Now (8:01)
17 Forward To Death (1:11)
18 Bleed For Me (8:10)
19 Nazi Punks Fuck Off (0:59)
20 Let’s Lynch The Landlord (4:22)
21 Pipeline (Chantays) (2:36)
22 Holiday In Cambodia (6:36)
23 I Fought The Law And I Won (Bobby Fuller Four) (2:25)
24 Moon Over Marin (4:45)

Descendents: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85

March 3rd, 2009 6 comments

The three years after Milo Goes to College was released seemed like an eternity in my life, so in 1985 it was hard to believe that the Descendents had actually gotten back together and that I was going to see them. Unable to find anyone else driving up from Lawrence to catch the show (it was a Monday night, most everyone I knew was 16 and car-less, etc), I somehow managed to cajole my friend Andre into coming down from KC to both pick me up and take me back home that night. It was worth it.

This was the Milo Aukerman, Bill Stevenson, Ray Cooper and Doug Carrion lineup (listen for Doug doing his “Scoobies” right before the band plays a larval version of “Enjoy”) and though it was their first tour they were obviously already “road tight”. While seen from the vantage of 2009 there are a couple of surprises here and there (“Mr. Bass”, “Shattered Milo”, the screamy vocals on “Enjoy”) mostly the set was about what you’d expect it to be: a killer display comprised of favorites off of the “Fat” E.P., Milo Goes to College and the just-released I Don’t Want To Grow Up album.

That said, despite the high energy level of the night (the Micronotz set included — check it out here) the crowd was really pretty reserved throughout. In fact aside from a couple dudes who slammed their way through “Kabuki Girl” and a few other songs, Andre and I were the only people anywhere near the stage for a good 95% of the Descendents’ set (which is why Milo thrust the mic our way during “Hope” and you can hear Andre warbling “You’ll be the only onnnne”). Weird huh? It’s kind of hard for me to reconcile this with my memories of the next three or four times I would see them in Lawrence at the Outhouse (always super-packed shows), but in 1985 the speed of Punk Rock was moving pretty fast — maybe people just needed to be reminded.

In fact for added and somewhat embarrassing context, here’s the review I printed in my fanzine “Room 101”:

Descendents show review from Room 101 #8
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Still, what a cool night. The bands were great, the ride there and back was a blast, and the songs were fantastic. I played this tape all Fall and Winter long, and though I almost feel foolish admitting how much these tunes (and others) helped get me through my teens, the truth is that they did. At 16 I was a little punk kid in search of some pop-smarts and lusty-but-achingly-heart-on-sleeve lyrics; clearly no one in 1985 could have delivered better on that than the Descendents. Thanks guys!

Descendents: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85 Set List
Set List: Click To Enlarge
(Note: though listed here, they actually never played “Rock Star”,“I Wanna Be A Bear” or “I’m Not a Loser”.)

Descendents: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 08-26-85 (192 kbps)
01 Theme (1:18)
02 Descendents (1:39)
03 I Don’t Wanna Grow Up (1:24)
04 Kabuki Girl (1:12)
05 GCF (2:00)
06 Pervert (1:48)
07 My Dad Sucks (1:19)
08 Weinerschnitzel (0:12)
09 Mr Bass (2:16)
10 Silly Girl (2:17)
11 Christmas Vacation (2:39)
12 Hope (2:27)
13 Bikeage (2:07)
14 Wendy (Beach Boys) (2:04)
15 Myage (2:22)
16 Marriage (1:45)
17 Suburban Home (1:51)
18 I’m Not A Punk (3:52)
19 Enjoy (1:38)
20 Shattered Milo (3:00)
21 Catalina (4:42)

Oh and hey! At the end of the show be sure to listen as Keith Patterson reads the lineup of gigs set to go down over the next week in KC:

Touring: Die Kruezen, The Offenders, Killdozer, Sonic Youth, Flaming Lips.

Locals: Orange Doe-Nuts, Slabs, Lard & Vegex.

We really had it pretty fucking good.

Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85

January 27th, 2009 14 comments

I first picked up the Battalion of Saints Fighting Boys EP back in 1983 at the great Starship Records in Tulsa, Oklahoma after being turned on to them by some Bartlesville friends of mine. Being overly enthusiastic 14 year olds, when together we would sometimes call the phone number the band had listed (for booking purposes) on their lyric sheet just so that we could, you know, chat and tell them how swell we all thought they were. Amazingly they didn’t tell us to fuck off, and later on I’d run information gleaned from these phone calls as “Updates on Battalion of Saints” in my fanzine Room 101 (the one here dates from issue #2, early 1984). Battalion were one of the few “metallic tinged” Punk bands that got the mix exactly right for my tastes and over the years I would continue to slavishly pick up any and all releases of theirs I could find, spinning them for hours on end.

Flash forward to summer 1985: by this time the Bats had released their first full LP Second Coming (containing several slightly slicker re-recordings of tunes from the demo tapes, singles & comp tracks already out there) and were booked for a show at the Foolkiller in KC on my 16th birthday. For some reason this and a few other gigs around mid ’85 got held in the basement of the building and though the sound was a bit dodger (George’s vocals suffered the most) I personally liked the “cave vibe” as well as the fact that it didn’t take as many people to fill up.

After sets by the Slabs and the Orange Doe-Nuts, Battalion of Saints finally got up and were ready to crank out what I’d been waiting forever to hear live. There was some more flash around the edges (check out those “Van Halen style” licks on Fighting Boys) and the set was cut a bit short thanks to several strings breaking, but I had no complaints — they were just a great fucking band and as cool in person as they’d been over the phone.

You’ll find a couple of unreleased tunes here; “Number One” (vocals sadly buried but helpfully introduced with “This is a new one, uh it’s called ‘Number One‘, thank you!”), whatever Track 13 is actually entitled (could be a cover for all I know, but a hot song either way), and the last thing which is a quick message that (now deceased) guitarist Chris Smith recorded for me to give to Oklahoma chum Brendan and his sister “Astri or Austry or whatever the fuck her name is.” A great night, a great band and a great birthday present.

Note: Swell guy and fellow KC punk (not to mention letterpress whizz) Bryan Hutcheson thinks he still has pictures from this show — stay tuned in case they materialize.

Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85
Click To Enlarge

Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85 (note wrong date)
Click To Enlarge (Note incorrect date on flyer)

Battalion of Saints: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 06-18-85 (192 kbps)
01 Club Noise/Warming Up (0:12)
02 Second Coming (2:33)
03 Right Or Wrong (1:33)
04 Fighting Boys (1:47)
05 No More Lies (2:26)
06 No Time (2:13)
07 My Mind’s Diseased (2:42)
08 Beefmasters (1:58)
09 Cops Are Out (2:14)
10 Number One (1:58)
11 Animal In Man (1:32)
12 Holy Vision (2:28)
13 Track 13 (2:26)
14 Fair Warning (1:30)
15 (I’m Gonna) Make You Scream (2:14)
16 Message To Brendan (0:33)

Marginal Man: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 07-03-85

January 11th, 2009 4 comments

You know, Marginal Man always kinda reminded me of the original Alice Cooper group. Something about the nighttime vibe a lot of their music had going on, and even some of Steve Polcari’s vocals — there was just a certain variety of cool happening in their sound that you didn’t hear much of at the time, and straight away I liked it.

All that had been released when they played this show was the Dischord 12″ “Identity” (well, and the Artificial Peace song “Someone Cares” which they do here), but as you’ll hear from the between song banter their follow up LP “Double Image” was ready to go, and surprisingly enough there are even a couple of tunes that would later turn up on their self titled Giant Records release from 1988. Still for me the big shocker was their closing cover (enigmatically introduced as “another band’s song”) of “Black Magic” off of the 1984 Joe Wood-era TSOL LP “Change Today?”! At the time I scarcely knew anyone else besides me who liked that album (this being the start of the “without Jack it’s crap” backlash), so it was a complete surprise when they pulled it out of their hat.

Aside from the vocals getting lost here and there (you could say that the guitar dominates), the sound is pretty good on this recording, so if you’re a fan you should enjoy this one.

For added context, here’s a rather enthusiastic review my pal Doug wrote about the show (for my fanzine “Room 101”):

Marginal Man show review from Room 101 #8
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…and hey, check it out. I even bought a shirt:

Jason (in Marginal Man shirt) and his Grandma (not in Marginal Man shirt). July, 1985
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Marginal Man Live at the Foolkiller in KC, MO 07-03-85
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Marginal Man: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 07-03-85 (192 kbps)
01 Turn The Tables (3:53)
02 Identity (1:53)
03 Mental Picture (2:03)
04 Tell Me (2:57)
05 I Had a Feeling (5:21)
06 Emotional Scars (1:14)
07 Linger In The Past (3:34)
07 Under a Shadow (2:32)
08 Strange Feeling (2:24)
10 Someone Cares (1:38)
11 Friend (1:40)
12 Marginal Man (2:34)
13 Missing Rungs (2:12)
14 Torn Apart (2:50)
15 Mainstream (5:42)
16 Double Image (4:46)
17 Chocolate Pudding (4:30)
18 Shades of Reason (3:21)
19 Pandora’s Box (2:08)
20 Fallen Pieces (2:48)
21 Black Magic (TSOL) (3:04)

Black Flag, Saccharine Trust, Tom Troccoli’s Dog: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 09-29-84

January 1st, 2009 8 comments

This was a big one for me. Black Flag were easily one of my favorite bands at the time and their live shows always carried a heavy rep. Since my older brother had caught a 1982 gig from the Henry/Greg/Dez/Chuck/Emil lineup at Off the Wall Hall in Lawrence (and seemed both impressed and unnerved by the experience), and since I’d missed their KC gig on the “My War” tour only 5 months earlier (a show which was cut short by the cops and the cause of some minor local rancor, click below to see the previous attention I’d given this, you know, burning issue in my fanzine), there was no way I was going to blow it here.

Room 101 #5 'Our War'
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Erik Adams, one of my earliest “Punk Rock Friends” and the guy who had inspired me to start doing a fanzine in the first place, had taken a Greyhound bus all the way up from Bartelsville, OK specifically for the show, so this was clearly a genuine event. “Slip It In” had only been released a few weeks earlier and once Erik arrived we spent the whole day bouncing around my room playing the record over and over, psyching ourselves up and acting like the hyperactive 15 year olds we were. Come evening we arrived absurdly early and got to talk to a sleepy Kira who was wandering around the hall and promised to “kick ass” for us. In an effort to hold on to everything even longer I had stocked up on blank tapes so as to document every second of audio, and Erik had borrowed a hotshit camera from his Dad that we figured would help spice up the layout of the interview I was gonna try to get (sadly if you check out the interview PDF you’ll note that those grand layout plans didn’t quite pan out. On the recording you can hear Erik shouting about some of the great pictures he was taking but by the end of the show his camera had been stolen. Later when it came time to transcribe the thing I discovered that my typewriter was busted so I crudely hand-wrote everything out instead; that interview layout looked pretty terrible).

By the time Tom Troccoli’s Dog walked on to the stage the Lawrence Opera House was pretty packed and the atmosphere felt very charged to me. A confusing choice as an opener to many I’m sure, they eased everyone into the night with a highly casual and jammy set that came complete with bongos and Grateful Dead covers. Still the Lawrence crowd was positive and receptive to all of this and after an 11 minute version of “Patience” Mr. Troccoli remarked that “If nothing else your endurance is certainly worth noting and thank you very much again for not booing me off of the stage.”

Saccharine Trust quickly set up and then launched into a killer performance composed mostly of tracks off of “Surviving You Always” (which I hadn’t heard) and subtle re-workings of a few “Pagan Icons” numbers (which I knew and loved). At turns Jazzy, noisy and Beat-style-poetic, even at the time I could tell that this stuff was expanding my tiny head. I honestly felt a little dizzy trying to follow what the guitar was doing (I still kinda do), and as a result I returned to this tape often.

Finally Black Flag were ready, and out of what eventually became a half dozen times I would see them, this was probably my favorite set. Spinning out a good mix of hits both old and new (along with a few then-unreleased instrumental numbers — man I really wish there had been more instrumental Flag albums), this was their last truly great lineup in my opinion. Kira and Bill were totally rock solid, Greg was aggressive, atonal and all over the fretboard, and Henry seemed simultaneously wrapped up in layers/totally exposed (with steam clearly rising up off of him the entire show). They all also seemed to be having a genuinely great time, and while the whole “Black Flag Work Ethic” was very much on display, the vibe felt far less serious to me than it would in the years to come. Corroborating my sense of this is Henry’s diary entry from Omaha, NE the next day (later published in Get In The Van):

I was reading Henry Miller’s Tropic of Cancer today while sitting on the ground in Lawrence, Kansas. Miller talked about how good everything looks when the sun’s out. Even the look in people’s eyes. When I was sitting there in Lawrence, the sun was out and everything looked good. All of a sudden it was the most beautiful place I had ever seen. I couldn’t remember what any other place in the world looked like. I felt like I had been there for a long time. I felt a need to articulate. I couldn’t do it with a photograph. It would have to be with words.

Now hours later, I can only remember the feeling. I can’t even remember what Lawrence looks like.

After the show was all over it was time to try for the interview. Maybe it was my youth (and in retrospect I realize that I looked even younger than I was) or maybe it was that whole “good vibe” thing I mentioned earlier, but contrary to other ’84 tour experiences I’ve seen & heard about, Mr. Rollins was clearly in a gregarious and open state of mind. I found him to be funny, friendly as hell and very accommodating to my dorky opener around the whole “so-the-Kansas-City-show-was-kinda-short” thing. He talked about the the ’82 Lawrence gig my brother had seen as well as the Bad Brains, SOA, Teen Idles, his plans to start publishing, a proposed SST side label called “Nixon Records” (intended to serve a similar role for SST that Zapple Records was supposed to serve for Apple), and to top it all off he very graciously tried to set me straight when I mentioned something I’d heard about Nick Cave’s June performance in Kansas City being “self indulgent”. Hats off to Henry!

A side note on the recordings: this being an all-ages Lawrence show there were a higher percentage of people I knew from school in attendance. This was cool because in contrast to a KC gig where I’d stick the tape recorder by the soundboard and cross my fingers that it wouldn’t get stolen, I could now go up front to be near the band and leave my stuff at one of the many Opera House tables under the watchful eyes of my less excitable friends. They would safeguard everything as they drank and tried to pick each other up or whatever, and the next day I would often discover bits of unexpected teenaged chitchat between the songs. I mention all of this because Black Flag’s set has one of my favorite accidental audience snippets, which you can hear at the end of “Swinging Man”:

KL: I’m fucking drunk!
RM: Yeah?
KL: LaLaLaArragh… I never meant to be this drunk… Okay… I didn’t wanna drink this much…
RM: What?
KL: (shouting) I DRANK TOO MUCH!

Cue: Black Flag “Forever Time”

…ahhh, maybe you had to be there.

Black Flag, Saccharine Trust, Tom Troccoli's Dog Ticket Stub
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Black Flag, Saccharine Trust, Tom Troccoli's Dog Flyer
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Tom Troccoli’s Dog: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 09-29-84 (192 kbps)
01 Introduction (0:19)
02 Eyes of The World (Grateful Dead) (2:48)
03 Loser (Grateful Dead) (5:09)
04 Play With Your Poodle (3:44)
05 Camarillo (5:17)
06 Suicide (5:59)
07 Patience (11:05)

Saccharine Trust: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 09-29-84 (192 kbps)
01 Intro/Warming Up (1:22)
02 I Have (1:51)
03 The Giver Takes (2:32)
04 Craving The Center (1:14)
05 Lot’s Seed (2:08)
06 Speak (4:23)
07 Our Discovery (5:59)
08 The Cat. Cracker (5:04)
09 Success And Failure (1:17)
10 A Good Night’s Bleeding (1:53)
11 Peace Frog (Doors) (3:48)
12 YHWH On Acid (5:37)
13 A Human Certainty (7:40)

Black Flag: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 09-29-84 (192 kbps).
(Comes bundled with a PDF of the interview I did.)
01 The Process Of Weeding Out (7:16)
02 Revenge (0:59)
03 Room 13 (2:42)
04 Swinging Man (2:59)
05 Forever Time (2:20)
06 Wound Up (4:10)
07 Slip It In (5:19)
08 My Ghetto (1:34)
09 Black Coffee (4:58)
10 Beat My Head Against The Wall (2:48)
11 Your Last Affront (3:30)
12 The Bars (4:54)
13 Rats Eyes (4:50)
14 Police Story (1:36)
15 Rise Above (2:44)
16 My War (6:37)
17 Nervous Breakdown (2:02)
18 Fix Me (0:54)
19 Jealous Again (2:25)
20 I Love You (3:19)
21 Nothing Left Inside (8:03)
22 Can’t Decide (4:49)
23 Louie Louie (6:46)
24 Club Noise (0:41)

• Here’s the interview in PDF form all by itself.

Iron Cross: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 08-11-84

December 21st, 2008 No comments

Jason: What were your thoughts of the Kansas City crowd?

Sab: I had a good time, apart from the two people. But there are always at least two in every crowd.

Andre: Could you explain what they were doing?

Sab: Oh, they were just Sieg-Heiling that’s all, and I don’t have any time for that so I told them off.

Jason: What did you say?

Sab: I said that if they were beaten up by three people in the N.F. (National Front) when they were sixteen, they wouldn’t be doing that.

My exposure to Iron Cross before this night was limited to their tracks on the Flex Your Head comp and a crappy tape recording of the Skinhead Glory single. Thanks to the source quality I’d scarcely spun the tape, but the Flex Your Head tracks really stood out to me due to that killer guitar tone & the overall comparative tempo restraint. Still, aside from reading an interview with Sab in Maximum RocknRoll #11, I barely knew a damn thing about the band and had little clue about the (by then 3 years old) various controversies surrounding them. My ignorance aside, even from this 38 minute set I could see the divisive impact they had on punks of the day; for example at the KC show their cover of Skrewdriver‘s 1977 tune “I Don’t Like You” was met with Sieg-Heiling, and throughout this recording you can hear people mockingly shout stuff like “More Heavy Metal!”, “Slow down!”, “It’s too fast!” and “You’re too wild!”. 1984 Hardcore in a snapshot, I suppose.

I was outside interviewing Naked Raygun (their set from this night has been posted as well, grab it here) when Iron Cross began to play, so while “I Don’t Love You Anymore” starts a bit abruptly, this is pretty much the full show. Interestingly, along with some otherwise unreleased covers by the likes of Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones (“We Love You”!), there are a handful of songs here that either never officially came out or are tunes I simply don’t know. To wit, “House of Pain”, whatever Track 07 is really called (which starts with Sab shouting “Whatcha gonna BEEE when you grow up?” & seems to have a chorus of “What is right for you?”), and the “New One” (announced with a preface of “I don’t even know the words yet and we’ll probably fuck it up but you won’t notice the difference”). In taking to Sab after the show (more on that in a second) he mentions their plans to go home and record a full album, so I can only assume these were slated to appear there. If you’re out there Sab I’d love to get the story, there are some cool songs here that (if dead) probably deserve a resurrection.

Also bundled in with the show is a PDF of an interview with Sab that I ran in issue #5 of my ‘zine Room 101. I can’t say that it’s my finest hour as I’m either clueless or silent through most of it, but my friend Andre saved the day by having a couple of actual questions to ask. Despite the ramshackle quality Sab was gracious as could be throughout, so (against all odds) you might actually be somewhat entertained. Topics touched upon include “Straight Edge” (you know, of course), SOA, Naked Raygun & “how Sab got into Punk”. Somehow I managed to avoid asking him what his favorite pizza topping was.

Click to enlarge

Iron Cross: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 08-11-84 (192 kbps)
01 I Don’t Love You Anymore (2:17)
02 House Of Pain (3:28)
03 Shadows In The Night (3:20)
04 I Don’t Like You (Skrewdriver) (2:26)
05 Wolfpack (3:02)
06 Communication Breakdown (Led Zeppelin) (2:52)
07 Track 07 (What Is Right For You) (2:35)
08 You’re A Rebel (4:41)
09 Crucified (3:51)
10 New One (4:45)
11 We Love You (Rolling Stones) [False Start] (0:35)
12 We Love You (Rolling Stones) (3:15)
13 Keith Patterson Announces Upcoming Shows (1:01)

• Here’s the interview in PDF form all by itself.

The Dicks: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO May 3, 1984

December 17th, 2008 4 comments

Here is where I present aural and visual evidence that when I was 14 years old my parents let me ride an hour and a half up to Kansas City (on a school night!) so that I could see a punk rock band called “The Dicks”.

Making their permission even less likely, I had chosen to bolster my sales pitch for the event by showing them issue #6 of Maximum RocknRoll, which depicted Dicks singer Gary Floyd in drag on the cover with the words “The Dicks: A Commie Faggot Band!??!” scrawled across the top.

 MRR 06

In the end I don’t know if my folks complied because of my persuasive skills or because it was obvious that I was absurdly determined to become entwined with all of this punk rock crap, and they simply decided to embrace that end result sooner rather than later. I strongly suspect the latter, and stronger still I think the secret deal-closer was that they were vaguely impressed with the dedication I had recently shown by slopping out two terrible issues of my very own fanzine “Room 101”, which I was busily sending out all over the globe in apparent obliviousness as to just how much it blew (and for the record, the degree to which it blew was “totally”.)

Luckily the guy who was going to help me make that ‘zine better was also the guy who had invited me to the Dicks show in the first place; his name was Jack Boyd and we’d only recently started hanging out. He was two years my senior and in addition to being a great musician and artist he also had the best Punk Rock record collection I’d ever encountered which he wasn’t at all hesitant about loaning out. Jack would eventually do cool drawings for Room 101, help with interviews as well as record and show reviews, greatly advance the design and layout (Zip-A-Tone! Rub off lettering!) and take all of the cool pictures you see below (exciting contextual note: the peel off letters used here (for “Henry Rollins Interview”, etc) were glow-in-the-dark and came from a box of Cap’n Crunch.)

Room 101 Cover
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Sebastian, Gary, Tim
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It was also in the service of this ‘zine that my Dad offered me the icing on the cake; he would loan out his portable cassette recorder for the night, allowing me to both interview AND record the band. I couldn’t believe it — in one fell swoop this presented the technological means to nail the two biggest desires punk rock had stirred up for me; contribution and documentation. (Running neck in neck of course was urge number three: “collect”, but for that I blame comic books.)

So this was my first “big city” show, my first interview with a band, and the first time I’d ever been entrusted with something as expensive as that tape recorder — looking back I can see that so many things could have gone wrong here, but amazingly nothing did. Kismet! We pulled up and I immediately felt at home in the Foolkiller (a “Folk Cabaret” with a historically liberal performance policy), I met the show promoters Keith Patterson and Eric Schindling (“Group Productions”) and they were both amazingly cool guys who said it was no problem for me to tape the show (I asked if I could leave the recorder by the sound board; my fears of thievery loosing out to the desire to be up in front of the band) and to top it all off I couldn’t have asked for an better first interview than the Dicks.

I dunno, maybe the band felt sorry for me or something (hell, I hadn’t even gone all the way through puberty yet), but despite some really dorky questions (“Is the theme of the new album the same as the single? Peace and no war and stuff like that?”) not one of them ever treated me like the rube I clearly was. In fact you can check it out; I’ve bundled a JPG of the printed interview in with the zip file of the show. Oh and did I mention that their set sounded fucking great too? Hit after hit sounding both tight and raw. Don’t miss snippets of my pre-voice change vocals on “No Fuckin’ War” either (easily confusable with the shriek that Rachel from “Issue” fanzine emits by the end). Uh, sorry about that guys.

Like I said: so many things could have gone wrong here, but instead this evening probably put the next big chunk of my life squarely into motion. My enthusiasm stoked, I started recording and interviewing lots of other bands for my ‘zine, tapping myself into a network of great people both worldwide and right in my own home town. Clearly this good fortune is still paying off today; over a quarter century later I get to share that night with YOU.

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• So here’s the show (comes bundled with a jpg of the interview, as well as large versions of the flyer and the 3 pictures that Jack took)

The Dicks: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO May 3, 1984 (192 kbps)
01 No Nazi’s Friend (4:08)
02 Nobody Asked Me (1:47)
03 The Police (Force) (2:42)
04 Legacy Of Man (3:26)
05 Fake Bands (3:08)
06 Rich Daddy (2:42)
07 Executive Dive (4:11)
08 I Hope You Get Drafted (2:11)
09 Sidewalk Begging (5:09)
10 You’d Better Think Twice (2:13)
11 Anti-Klan (Part 1) (2:11)
12 Decent And Clean (2:48)
13 The Dicks Hate The Police (2:25)
14 No Fuckin’ War (6:24)
15 Little Rock ‘n’ Roller (Incomplete) (1:52)

• And here’s a link to the interview in JPG form all by itself.

Room 101 #4 - Dicks InterviewRoom 101 #4 - Dicks InterviewRoom 101 #4 - Dicks InterviewRoom 101 #4 - Dicks Interview

Room 101 #4 - Dicks InterviewRoom 101 #4 - Dicks InterviewRoom 101 #4 - Dicks InterviewRoom 101 #4 - Dicks Interview

(And hey! I’d still really love to get a copy of that Wrecks demo “Teenage Jive”!)

…and just for the hell of it here’s a clip (shot only one month earlier) of the Dicks performing “Fake Bands” at the Olympic Ballroom in LA