Dead Kennedys, Marquee Theatre, 9/22/12
Photos by Melissa Fossum Dead Kennedys perform at the Marquee Theatre in Tempe.
Dead Kennedys @ Marquee Theatre | Saturday, September 22, 2012
For those not fully versed in the ins and outs of punk rock history, allow me to bring you up to speed: Officially, the iconic punk band known as Dead Kennedys perished back in 1986 due to in-fighting and the drama surrounding the controversial Frankenchrist obscenity trial.
I state this fact because the abomination that crept onstage at Marquee Theatre last night was not, and will never be, the true Dead Kennedys. Period. Its members may have looked and sounded like East Bay Ray, Klaus Fluoride, and DH Peligro, but without original vocalist Jello Biafra in the mix, it ain't the same band who personified early '80s punk and influenced thousands of punkers and hardcore kids worldwide.
See also: Dead Kennedys Are Coming to Tempe (Sans Jello)
See also: Concert Review -- Jello Biafra at the Clubhouse Music Venue
See also: DK Kennedys -- The same old punks, minus Jello Biafra, plus Brandon Cruz
East Bay Ray
You can call them the DK Kennedys (the moniker used by the band after their revival in the early Aughts) or the "world's greediest karaoke band" (a title coined by Biafra), but three-quarters of the original lineup and some dummy they've recruited to sing, which is currently Ron "Skip" Greer of The Winona Ryders fame, does not the Dead Kennedys make.
And believe me, Greer seems quite the fool. Like the other would-be Biafras that East Bay and company have sewn onto the corpse of DK over the last decade (including weirdo musician Jeff Penalty and former child star Brandon Cruz), the spasmodic singer thrashed about the stage, becoming a hyperactive, bug-eyed tornado who attempted to one-up Jello's epic stage antics during the band's heyday, but was nowhere near as captivating.
Ron "Skip" Greer
Heck, an actual bowl of Jell-O would've been more enthralling than Greer's weak-ass performance. His vocals were both undermixed (and were hard to hear and times) while his clowning was over done. Greer's timing was also way off, the between song blatherings were pathetic and eye-roll-inducing, and his annoying high-pitched caterwaulings often matched Wall of Voodoo vocalist Stan Ridgway in terms of annoyance.