The Misfits, Guttermouth, Strung Out, The Vandals, Celebrity Theatre, 11/9/12
http://grayhood.com/2011/01/horror-business/ I didn't get a photo pass, so you're stuck with this and some crappy iPhone pictures.
6 Rounds of Punk with The Misfits, The Vandals, Strung Out, and Guttermouth @ Celebrity Theatre| 11/9/12
6 Rounds of Punk is a dream come true for fans of good ol' punk rock. Okay, so maybe not in 2012, but it would have been a dream lineup a decade or two ago. When tours like this happen, it's often questionable why these bands bother hitting the road. The common assumption is that it's for the money, which would explain the steep $35 ticket price, though we cling to the hope that it's for the love of music.
Regardless of motives, 6 Rounds of Punk featured four very well established punk bands that have made their way in to Arizona many, many times over the course of the past 20 to 35 years. Through numerous lineup changes, drug use and abuse, getting thrown off, err...voluntarily leaving Warped Tour, these bands somehow continue to persist.
To be frank, I had low expectations of last night's show. In 2007, I saw the Jerry Only-fronted Misfits at Venue Scottsdale and hated it. I reluctantly purchased a $40 ticket so I could see Agent Orange, though I ended up leaving part way through Misfits' set because the performance was sloppy and the pacing was screwed up.
I also photographed the abomination known as Dead Kennedys a few months ago, so this whole classic punk bands performing with a different singer thing left a pretty bad taste in my mouth. But hey, I was head over heels in love with every band on the lineup at one time or another, so why not? I was pretty much guaranteed to hear "Where Eagles Dare," "I've Got An Ape Drape," "Bring Out Your Dead," and "Lipstick" last night, so I figured I didn't have much to lose. After all, lowered expectations usually mean fewer disappointments.
First up was Guttermouth, a.k.a. "I can't believe my parents let me listen to this shit when I was in junior high." True to its namesake, Guttermouth is pretty vulgar (see: "Lucky the Donkey" which is about a, umm...lucky donkey and a not so lucky woman). I vaguely remember frontman Mark Adkins shooting his mouth off at the band's show with Nerf Herder at Club Rio way back in the day. Nothing in particular stuck out, but it didn't seem too atrocious.
Melissa Fossum Guttermouth
Last night, Adkins gave booze to a 19-year-old, called a girl dancing on stage a "stupid bitch," and asked an 8-year-old kid to fetch him a beer. It was all an appropriate lead in to the song "Asshole," which somehow showed a Adkins' good side. A father struggled to keep his kid in the crowd as the singer pulled him on stage.
"Do you know anything about our music?" Adkins asked Dustin, the boy decked out in Misfits patches. "No, I play drums," he replied as he was led to the drum kit. According to Guttermouth, the band's usual drummer had a mix up at customs, so they had a fill in last night. This kid played a fairly standard fast punk rock beat and held it down really well. The rest of the band joined in for a song, and Adkins said he should replace their missing Australian drummer with Dustin.
Next was Strung Out, which apparently lived up to its name. After performing "Lubricating the Revolution," frontman Jason Cruz seemed a little freaked out by the rotating stage.
Melissa Fossum Strung Out
"I took a hit of acid before we took the stage, I'm sorry. I'm starting to see shit," he said. Regardless of whether this was true, he still did a great job singing. The band played a good mix of material, including cuts from the underrated Exile in Oblivion and An American Paradox.
Cruz probably was in fact strung out, since he spent the time during "Bring Out Your Dead"'s guitar solo writhing on the ground. It was weird to see, but at least he promptly got up and remembered the rest of the lyrics. Whatever gets you through the set works, I guess.
Cruz said that "Mind of My Own" was going to be the band's last song, and dedicated it "The fucking Misfits!" but proceeded to play three more songs, including "Matchbook." So much for Jason Cruz deciding to "bury" that song.
I don't think I've missed a Strung Out show since about 2004 or so. You'd think it would get repetitive, but they always mix up their sets. I'm pretty sure they always play a few key songs from Twisted by Design, but there are always a few songs that take me by surprise. Tonight it was "Analog," "Firecracker," and a great performance of "Velvet Alley."