Happy HalloWEEN!! The greatest night to walk around in New York City-people in costumes everywhere; Lions and tigers and bears oh my. And most importantly, the female version of every Halloween costume-something straight out of the Victoria’s Secret catalog. Wasn’t a hard decision at all to make the 58th edition of the Jay Porks Never Ending concert series “An Evening with Ween” at Manhattan Center’s Hammerstein Ballroom. The “An Evening” billing means there are no openers for me to offend, so it’s straight up doors at 6:30- show at 8 o clock. Pumped would be an understatement.
The line to get in already had stragglers on it at 5:30 when I got off the train. With a Quiznos across the street, I grabbed a sandwich (which was terrible-but this isn’t Fast Food Confessions) and headed over towards the line. Figured I’d chat with my fellow Ween fans while we wait for doors to open since I’m not usually around people who know what bands I’m talking about. Everyone’s got a different song they want to hear, or a different story about a past epic experience(like last year a Central Park). We share the common bond of acting like giddy little girls waiting to get in. One girl (who’s was in a ‘Where’s Waldo costume NOT Harry Potter like every passer by thought she was) said she’s had a boner for this show for weeks. Me too. . At about 6:45 they let us in, and I made my way to Section 103: Row D, Seat 5 and surveyed my view. There’s pillars at the end of each row blocking the view of event staff, and the seats elevate every two rows so if I keep my camera close to my chest, I shouldn’t have any incidents like at the Beacon.
Shortly after 8 here comes Ween, walking out on stage in skimpy sailor outfits. It took me a couple of songs to get settled in, but “Homo Rainbow” was 2nd or 3rd- and it took me right back to Chef-Aid from South Park. I say “took time to settle in” because section 103 is being taken over by the crowd like a prison riot. The seats were like, individual(as oppose to movie theater style), so the first few minutes of the set we all were stacking up the chairs in each row creating a standing room only mezzanine section boarded off by towers of chairs. It was insane-the ushers have disappeared. It was like school with no teacher, like work when your boss is away, like inmates in a prison with no Warden.The scent of pot is everywhere, and I’m looking around for where it’s coming from. The couple next to me pretended it wasn’t there’s , although I watched them lighting bowls. It’s cool, welcome to the “Jay Porks Hates You” club-you’ve joined a large group.The place was crazy. Everyone jiving to the likes of “Mr Richard Smoker”, “Transdermal Celebration” A bunch of us including me screaming for ‘Put that Coke on My Dick’, as I hear one guy telling his friend “That’s my mom’s favorite Ween song! It’s gross” .Then after “Fat Lenny”, just when I thought this place couldn’t get any more rowdy, it was time for the roof to come off: “Touch My Tooter”. Hell freaking yes!
I swear they must has ran through almost every song I knew the name of before 10 o clock. I couldn’t even believe how on fire I was with taking video for a while there. Dean sang us “Piss up a Rope”.. And “Buckingham Green” with the green lights bouncing off smoke surrounding the Deaner-man am I glad that went down. they played “Bananas and Blow”, which was good for the group 5 people with a costume theme: 4 bananas and one guy as a big bag of Cocaine-Halloween brilliance right there.
“With My Own Bare Hands” preceded “Spinal Meningitis” then “Your Party”. I’ve got to say, Ween throws some awesome parties-especially when I get to hear them cover Bowie’s “Let’s Dance”.
Then caught by surprise with “Voodoo Lady” following, glad I still had my camera up and ready. Is it always a 10+ minute version of the song? Because my camera has it clocked at 12 minutes 8 seconds. Mind you that it’s like, not even 10 o clock at this point.
Wait a second-ENCORE?! Hell freaking yes. Central Park last year they didn’t encore due to park regulations-but non such elements here at Hammerstein. And besides, I honestly believe chairs would’ve been thrown off the mezzanine if they didn’t come back on. These were some intense folk-the prison riot analogy was half kidding, but after a night of ‘Ween and Other Drugs’ (you love my puns), sh!t could’ve gotten dangerous up in Section 103. I believe it was a 3 song encore, the one I was really into and remembered was “She Fucks Me”. At 11:07 they bowed and officially said goodnight.On Halloween 2011, Ween came to town and played a three hour set. It’s 4:30AM as I write this sentence, and I’m still putting the pieces of my face back together that were melted off during the duration of this show. I got plenty of videos, and they’ll be uploading to my YouTube page tonight and tomorrow. The audio is good. Check up for that.Now we turn the page to November folks, and if I wasn’t already moist you’ll never believe what’s on deck for the weekend. The legends, the one and only, THE MEAT PUPPETS! This Friday at Le Poisson Rouge 158 Bleecker St in the city and then I check them again Sunday with my friend Pam in Teaneck, NJ at a place called Mexicali Live. I will have more content from that weekend than I can even envision right now, but what I really envision is a nap before I have to head to work at Noon tomorrow. This was fun-check you soon. LATE