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Posts Tagged ‘SST’

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
Click to enlarge

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.

Blind Idiot God: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84

January 10th, 2009 5 comments

Gabe Katz (Blind Idiot God): This one’s for all the pussies down in the bar that won’t come up and hear us. (shouting) You know we drove 250 miles to do this!

Unimpressed gentleman in the audience: That ain’t shit.

Recorded the same night as the ill-fated Dr. Know set which I posted earlier, this was the first time I was able to hear Blind Idot God. At the time all I knew about them was that their demo tape had been mentioned in MRR#14/given a “top twenty” listing by Pushead, and that there was some strong local chatter concerning them in KC. Still I guess I had no real idea what to expect.

MRR #14 St. Louis Scene Report
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MRR #14 Pushead's Top 20
Click to enlarge

People who know what they became 3 or 4 years later and have heard their SST and Zorn related output might be a bit surprised at the more single minded hardcore/metal/punk/noise type blasts that dominate this recording, but if you listen closely to the many “Title Unknown” tracks here you’ll be able to find snippets of riffs and ideas that would later get stitched into much longer pieces. This being 1984 there’s nary a hint of Dub to be found, but the “Avant” underpinnings are still very much in evidence — it’s really too bad their set got cut short. Then again I guess the “pussies down in the bar” (and there were more than a few) probably felt differently about that, eh?

Blind Idiot God Live at the VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84
Click to enlarge


Blind Idiot God: Live At The VFW#18 in KC, MO 10-23-84 (192 kbps)
01 Track 01 – Title Unknown (2:43)
02 Track 02 – Title Unknown (1:16)
03 Track 03 – Title Unknown (2:14)
04 Blasting Off (1:38)
05 Track 05 – Title Unknown (1:19)
06 Track 06 – Title Unknown (3:01)
07 Sawtooth (2:25)
08 Track 08 – Title Unknown (1:29)
09 Shifting Sand (3:49)
10 Track 10 – Title Unknown (2:03)
11 Track 11 – Title Unknown (2:19)
12 Track 12 – Title Unknown (2:51)
13 Easing Back (2:11)
14 Track 14 – Title Unknown (0:24)
15 The Police Are Outside/Club Noise (1:23)

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'
Click To Enlarge

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
Click To Enlarge

Black Flag, Saccharine Trust, Tom Troccoli's Dog Flyer
Click To Enlarge


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.

Hüsker Dü: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 05-12-84

December 20th, 2008 6 comments

Before we get started, I’d like to thank KJHK for making this all possible. Now the band that you’ve been waiting for! Please give a warm, Opera House welcome for, SST recording artists, Hüsker Dü!

May 12th, 1984 was the first time that I ever saw Hüsker Dü. Since I’d dutifully purchased and absorbed all of their albums (being particularly blown away by Metal Circus, easily my most played record the Fall and Winter of 1983) I thought I knew what I was in for. I knew dick.

Not only had I never experienced a band that had so mastered the art of inserting those unrelenting song blocks into their set, but an amazing 13 of the 19 songs they play here (and there were more that my tape recorder missed) were unreleased by them at the time. As a result I spent the next two months playing and replaying this tape in an unwitting prep session not just for their MegaHugeAwesomeDouble LP Zen Arcade (from which they played 7 songs), but also for their HowManyFuckingGreatTunesCanTheyWrite? followup New Day Rising (5 songs here) which was released only 6 months later.

The Lawrence Opera House (now known as Liberty Hall with a great adjacent video store — ask for Doug!) was a big boomy venue with a cool balcony and decrepit charm to spare. As a result the sound here is kind of echoey, but the mix is solid and the Hüskers are tight as hell. If you’re put off at all by the audio don’t fret; I trucked up to Kansas City for their gig the next night as well and, while the set was largely the same, I managed to capture about 6 more songs with a fuller overall sound. That recording will be coming along soon enough so, you know, watch this space for links.

No flyer, but here’s a review of the show from issue #5 of Lisa “Zero” Kelley’s local ‘zine National Priorities:

Hüsker Dü Show Review from National Priorities #5
Click to enlarge


Hüsker Dü: Live At The Lawrence Opera House in Lawrence, KS 05-12-84 (192 kbps)
01 Something I Learned Today (2:06)
02 It’s Not Funny Anymore (1:47)
03 From The Gut (1:21)
04 Wheels (1:46)
05 Everything Falls Apart (1:47)
06 The Girl Who Lives On Heaven Hill (3:16)
07 I Apologize (3:29)
08 Books About UFOs (2:40)
09 Folklore (1:31)
10 If I Told You (2:07)
11 What’s Going On (3:19)
12 Somewhere (2:28)
13 Pink Turns To Blue (2:20)
14 Newest Industry (2:48)
15 Broken Home, Broken Heart (1:56)
16 Diane (3:53)
17 Masochism World (2:32)
18 Eight Miles High (Byrds) (5:03)
19 Statues (Incomplete) (1:59)

Minutemen: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO 07-10-84

December 18th, 2008 3 comments

As a lot of folks seem to enjoy pointing out these days, 1984 was a really amazing year for music. If you lived through it you know that while mainstream America was mostly focused on the likes of Prince, Madonna, Michael Jackson & Bruce Springsteen, the outpouring of great stuff via the whole punk rock/underground/whateveryouwannacallit had really hit some kind of fever pitch.

Justifiably perennial on any “Hooray for 1984” list is the Minutemen‘s “Double Nickles On The Dime” LP, and though “What Makes A Man Start Fires” was the first Minutemen release I really fell in love with (and remains my favorite), I certainly concur. Somehow my crummy zine had magically worked itself onto the SST promo list around June, and the day when I came home to discover both “Zen Arcade” & “Double Nickles” waiting on my front porch was an amazing one for sure. Needless to say, after hours and hours of cramming the sounds (it arrived only days before this show) I was very, very excited to finally see the real deal. As you’ll hear they didn’t disappoint.

Despite the sweltering July weather the Foolkiller was packed extra tight with fans, and for my money it was the perfect sized club to catch them in. Subsequent Minutemen shows that I was able to see were at increasingly large venues & the band-to-audience energy understandably lost a lot of punch, but man what a unique & cool bunch of guys. Sure wish they’d been able to stick around longer. Sure wish I’d taken pictures. Sure wish I still had that double sided 1984 tour t-shirt featuring Uncle Sam’s exposed cock.

Flyer
Click to enlarge

Flyer
Click to enlarge


Minutemen: Live At The Foolkiller in KC, MO July 10, 1984 (192 kbps)
01 Toadies (1:36)
02 Retreat (1:49)
03 Anxious Mo-Fo (1:13)
04 Maybe Partying Will Help (1:47)
05 Joe McCarthy’s Ghost (0:53)
06 The Roar Of The Masses Could Be Farts (1:21)
07 Please Don’t Be Gentle With Me (0:45)
08 God Bows To Math (1:19)
09 Viet Nam (1:32)
10 Love Dance (4:14)
11 Mutiny In Jonestown (1:10)
12 Fake Contest (1:00)
13 The Only Minority (0:56)
14 The Tin Roof (1:39)
15 Mr. Robot’s Holy Orders (2:19)
16 No Exchange (1:36)
17 Static (0:44)
18 Search (0:53)
19 The Punch Line (0:39)
20 Definitions (1:09)
21 Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love (Van Halen) (0:39)
22 The Anchor (2:41)
23 Cut (2:04)
24 There Ain’t Shit On T.V. Tonight (1:29)
25 Don’t Look Now (1:50)
26 Do You Want New Wave Or Do You Want the Truth? (1:47)
27 Nothing Indeed (1:19)
28 Self-Referenced (1:08)
29 Dream Told By Moto (1:33)
30 The Product (2:34)
31 Corona (Incomplete) (1:27)
32 Plight (Incomplete) (0:58)
33 I Felt Like A Gringo (1:49)
34 Jesus And Tequila (2:52)
35 Bob Dylan Wrote Propaganda Songs (2:05)


By the way, a pretty good recording of their (even longer) set from the next night in Columbia MO at the Blue Note is out there too, here’s the flyer:

Flyer
Click to enlarge

and the link to the audio:

http://www.archive.org/details/minutemen1984-05-12.flacf