10/28/2000 - Irvine,
Featuring – X (all original members),
The Damned (Dave Vanian, Captain Sensible), Misfits, Supersuckers, Zeke,
Zen Guerilla, Throw Rag, Bleeders, Blazing Haley, The Amazing Crowns, Speedbuggy,
It was raining the morning of October 28th
but I wasn’t ready to throw in the towel regardless of whether the old
“rain or shine” policy was in effect or not for the first annual Blood
Drive Halloween Fest.
The sky cleared up and the rain stopped at about 11 o’clock that morning,
making it a bright, crisp Southern California day.
By the time we got inside the venue the
place was already packed with thousands of music fans of every type imaginable.
There were Rockers, Punks, Rockabilly, Normal, and assorted retro types
in attendance, all there to see their favorites at this very diverse show.
It was killer the way the two European style stages were set up side by
side, making the show go off like clockwork with one bands set ending on
one stage and the next band taking the stage next to it immediately afterwards.
There didn't appear to be more than five minutes between any of the bands
Our timing couldn’t have been better because
Zeke was up next, and they’re a band I’d wanted to see for a while after
being turned onto their CD “Kicked in the Teeth.” These guys were
a lot of fun to watch and they put on a loud, fast show. The whole
band looks like they’ve got that dirtbag/speedfreak thing going on, which
makes them amusing to watch as they play music that caters to the Hot Rod
Racing and Devil Worshipping crowd. Check out their CD’s “Kicked
in the Teeth” and “Dirty Sanchez.”
After Zeke finished their set Supersuckers
took the second stage and played their brand of straight ahead, high volume
Rock and Roll. These guys don’t play up to any expectations of what
they’re supposed to sound like. Looking at Eddie Spaghetti with his
trademark Stetson and Grizzly Adams beard, you’d think he was capable of
busting out some play me that mountain music Alabama song. That’s
one of the great things about Supersuckers is that their look don’t match
their sound and most of the time it leaves those who’ve never heard them
surprised as hell when they hear them break out the classic A chord, and
four on the floor classic rock drum beats. Supersuckers sound is
nothing more than simple Rock and Roll delivered by a couple of killer
guitarists who know that nothing compares to that badass Rock and Roll
sound you can only get out of a couple of vintage gold tops and Marshall
amps. They’re from Seattle, but they sure ain’t grunge, and I give
them high marks for this show because they were out there in support of
a fair trial for the West Memphis Three, and the cover of The James Gang
classic “Funk 49” they played kicked ass!
We were in the area in back of the stages
about 15 minutes before Supersuckers set ended setting things up for an
interview with The MISFITS.
There’s some changes going on in The MISFITS camp that can’t be confirmed
as being temporary or permanent right now. The band is at the liberty
to speak, but chooses not to out of respect for everyone involved.
The band is a tight knit unit along with their management and crew, and
we should show them as much love and respect as they show us fans in the
trying times they’re going through. Don’t forget it for a second;
The MISFITS are the band that just won’t die! The band took the stage
and pounded into their set with as much intensity as any MISFITS show I’ve
ever seen. When Iron Maiden wrote that song “The Trooper” they must
have been writing it about Zoli Teglas who’s filling in on vocals.
At this time Zoli has been recruited to
do some stateside tour dates with the MISFITS that don’t interfere with
his IGNITE tour schedule, and after that he’ll be doing the MISFITS tour
in Japan, and the South American tour dates also. Nothing’s official
as far as Zoli’s permanent membership until the MISFITS and Zoli say it’s
official. Zoli along with drummer Kenny Schalk (from speed-metallers
Candiria) did an incredible job filling in the vacant vocal and drum slots,
especially after learning all the songs in the span of four days.
The band played all the songs the crowd wanted to hear, and Jerry made
sure everyone knew that’s what The MISFITS were there for. We heard
“Skulls”, “Hybrid Moments”, stuff from “Famous Monsters” and almost all
of “Walk Among Us.” With the exception of one idiot in the crowd
everyone was mesmerized by the high
energy the MISFITS always put out, and of Zoli and how well his own voice
suits the MISFITS songs. Some people in the crowd were making the
inevitable comparisons and saying that Zoli’s voice sounded somewhere between
that of Danzig and Graves, whereas I’ve seen Zoli with his band IGNITE
opening for the MISFITS, and concluded that his voice is incredibly powerful
and versatile yet all his own. The MISFITS demolished the crowd
throughout their hour-long set, and closed with a crushing encore of “Helena.”
Thanks to Jerry and Doyle, and to MISFITS management and crew for everything.
EVIL NEVER DIES!!!
I stood in front of the stage and choked
on the fog that along with the church organs signaled to the crowd that
it could be no other than The Damned taking the stage. This show
marked the return of Original member Captain Sensible to The Damned.
We’ve got Dave Vanian and Captain Sensible from the original line-up, now
all we need is Brian James and Rat Scabies to make it a re-union show.
Nah, forget those guys. I was salivating
all over myself when I saw Patricia Morrison (ex Sisters of Mercy, Gun
Club) walking towards me on the right side of the stage dressed in a patent
leather nuns outfit with horns on the veil. Patricia Morrison is
playing bass in The Damned and they’ve never sounded better. Dave
Vanian came onstage in his sacrilegious demeanor with horns sprouting out
his forehead, and looking like a dead ringer for Lucifer himself (or a
pissed off Elvis unable to find a cheeseburger). Captain Sensible
was in classic form and hasn’t changed from the obnoxious English Punk
he’s been since the early days. The Damned has been kicking around
for 23 years and for those of you who don’t know, they put out “Damned
Damned Damned” in 1977 before the Pistols put out “Nevermind the Bollocks.”
How fitting for the Damned with their Goth, Punk, Vampire
image, and bloody defilement of Moses in their stage show to be playing
the Blood Drive. The Damned is so much better now than when I saw
them at Fenders Ballroom in Long Beach ten years ago. The set included
all the best songs including “New Rose”, “Neat Neat Neat”, “Mystery Man”,
and the encore “Smash it up.” The spastic Monty Oxy Moron on keyboards
and Pinch on drums complete the bands line-up, and this line-up is as good
as any the Damned has ever had. Now we just need a new album from
the Damned that goes back to the style of the first album.
If any band had the ability to make sure
everybody left the Blood Drive without feeling like they were ripped-off
by the high ticket price, X was definitely that band. With all original
members it was practically
guaranteed that X alone would give the people their moneys worth.
Hell, with twelve excellent bands on the bill this show could hardly be
called a rip-off. Except for John Doe’s eyeliner and flaming superhero
cape, and Exene’s black widow costume and D.J. Bonebrake’s goofy blue wig
and swimmers goggles this was a back to basics, totally stripped down show
that drew it’s strength from the virtual library of music the band has
created in it’s phenomenal career, or at least the first three or four
albums recorded with the original line-up. When X started playing
shows with the original lineup intact a couple of years ago I thought I’d
missed the second coming of X and that I’d blown my chance to see the legendary
Los Angeles Punk pioneers play live. After seeing X at the Blood
Drive I can now see why they’ve been cited by critics and their punk brethren
for such a long time to be the best Punk band to ever come out of Los Angeles.
It was stunning to watch and witness an event that will be musical history
in the memories of myself and all the other X fans in attendance.
All the same things I loved about X when I first heard John Doe sing “Los
Angeles” in that hillbilly baritone, or Exene’s tortured wail kicking in
on that same song, or D.J.’s crashing and bashing his drumset, or Billy
Zoom’s classic guitar playing that alternates between technically proficient
and “loose as a goose” rockabilly riffs, I love even more after seeing
them live. Incredible to witness is an understatement. Members
of the opening bands as well as fans, family, and friends, and assorted
VIP lined the area around the edges of the stage to see and feel the excitement
X generates live. The bands close-knit bunch of friends was as rabid
an audience as the ticketholders on the other side of the barricades.
X ruled on this night as they played all the standards we love so much,
including “White Girl”, “Motel Room in My Bed”, Johnny Hit and Run Pauline”,
“Los Angeles”, and the scorching encore of “Soul Kitchen.” Great
show! Thanks for the memories!
by Frank at PovPix.com