7/19/09 Cleveland, OH @ Now That’s Class
I have only been to this venue and bar twice before. Once for a great hardcore punk band from St. Louis called Civic Progress. The second time was a drive up from Columbus to see a very drunken Bananas set. Pretty worth it. We couldn’t miss a Cali band that rarely tours or comes to the heart of it all. The crowd was wasted though and annoying, yelling ignorant shit. One fight. There was an opening band that tried to injure the crowd. Kinda like how I imagine Cleveland. Late in the night on my digi cam, I videoed Scott Banana singing a song to a girl. He played with his legs dangling down from the stage on unplugged electric guitar in a giant sombrero that she was holding onto like bike handle bars. She was steering his head around. She had missed their set and her favorite song. He gave a new version of it just for her, protected in their world of beer, not noticing a few extra people watching. Really, I doubt either of them cared or would be embarrassed.
I went to this show with Jesse and Monkee. We got guest list treatment by our friends in Thousandaires. I went even though I had just been at Berea fest helping run two days of music. It’s never too much. Actually, it just is something easy to do. Something almost natural, like showering for some people.
Thousandaires for one have a good band name. Hundredaires could be their street punk alter-ego. Is there a band called that? If you are enamored with any Hot Water Music albums or any punk that sweats emotional sweat beads and ruins voices, then this Brooklyn based band is for you.
Shellshag are Brooklyn based by way of the bay area, CA. They are just a two piece. Distorted guitar through a crummy amp and a standing drummer with a tail feather of bells. Male/Female vocals. It is poppy, sometimes grungy, sometimes noisy. It slips in and out of sloppiness to yield music that is catchy and brilliant but also falling apart and possibly on drugs. Their energy and chemistry comes through live. They ended their set by making a drum set tower, topped with the guitar. It fell, as those types of things should in rocknroll.
Vietnam Werewolf was playing their last show. These are guys I’ve known for awhile from Cleveland shows. They are good people and I hope they keep playing in bands. Andy (drums) asked me to video tape their set with a very nice hand held camera. I did so, standing on an unused speaker cab for a professional aerial view. I am happy I got to do it because now I know I never want to get very into video documenting things. My arms got so fucking tired and I felt like I wasn’t really there. Life through the lens or screen is less potent for me. I just wanna see it and then keep a dumb blog about it full of watered down words.