Tag: New York City

Nita Strauss and Kore Rozzik

Almost everyone in the rock n roll community and beyond has heard the name Alice Cooper at some point. He’s a legend in metal and rock n roll history having played thousands of shows and released many well known albums and singles. However a lesser known name up until recently in Nita Strauss. Nita is the current guitarist for Alice Cooper and is rapidly rising as one of the most talented metal and rock guitarist in music today. I came across Nita through a close friend and fellow guitarist who also admired her amazing skills. However, playing with Alice Cooper is not the only performing the Nita Strauss does. She also writes her own music with her own self titled solo project and has just wrapped up her tour with the New York City band Kore Rozzik. I was lucky enough to get the chance to shoot one of the stops of this tour when they made their way through Baton Rouge, LA. They played a small theater called the Varsity Theater, which is within only steps from the campus of LSU.

The Varsity Theater in Baton Rouge, LA is one of the few small town venues left in the area for live music. Regardless of how small it is they always seem to draw big name acts such as The Black Dahlia Murder, Cannibal Corpse, Gwar, and Black Label Society. Being a concert photographer and fellow metal head I’m always looking for great acts, local and big name alike, to shoot. The Varsity Theater is one of the few good venues left that not only book amazing acts but also allow cameras without a press or photo pass. However, like many small venues, the lighting at most shows is less than ideal for photographers. Never the less, Nita Strauss and Kore Rozzik tore the house down.

Supporting Nita on this tour was a New York City band named Kore Rozzik. Fronted by a singer known by the same name, Kore Rozzik took the New York City music scene by storm and rapidly rose among artist in the area. Also known as “The Bastard Child of New York”, he and his fellow band mates have created their imagery and stage presence based off of influences from such idols as Alice Cooper, Marilyn Manson, Rob Zombie and Megadeth. This band, however, was unknown to me before this show and I was skeptical upon first glance. With the face paint, props and outfits I was unsure about them until they began to play. All members of this band are very talented and showcased their talents from the start to the finish of their set making all of my questions vanish. This band is most definitely worth checking out for anyone who likes this type of metal.

If any of my fellow metalheads reading this article are looking for a new act to catch live or some new music to listen to I highly recommend checking out Nita Strauss and Kore Rozzik.

 

 

 

 

Kasabian @ Terminal 5 – New York City 09/27/14

Kasabian – 09/27/2014

Terminal 5 -New York City

Words/Photos/Videos – Jay Porks

Kasabian

On this seasonably warm Saturday evening New York City is lucky enough to be graced with the presence of Kasabian tonight in the Hell’s Kitchen section of Manhattan. Back in March 2012 the band was here in this very venue and the night was almost as magical as Derek Jeter’s final home game. Tonight we’re hoping for some of the same, as we’ll be 3,000 deep in the sold out Terminal 5. Bo Ningen is the opening act and the doors are set to open at 7PM.

Bo Ningen

When Bo Ningen walked out on stage there was some snickering and confusion around the area I was seated on the third floor, especially when the lead singer told the New York City crowd that the band (all of Asian decent) was from London and originally from Japan. Once this band broke into their first song nothing at all was funny anymore. They ROCKED. Songs were long and jam filled. Who knows if the lyrics were even in English let alone if I knew what the set list contained. I understood two things; First off,  they were really gracious and kept thanking us for coming out early. Two: The intensity of the rock that they played (which I look up later to be known as ‘acid rock. Which makes sense) made me get into it. And yes them not being your traditional  Bud Light American band of the month didn’t hurt at all. They rocked it til 8:30. Who the heck knew? Bo freakin’ Ningen.

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At 9:05 this place was about to burst awaiting the Kasabian to hit the stage. It’s odd because I’ve spent the better part of two years mentioning this band to everyone who asks me about music I’m currently listening to (you can only go to the 90s well a certain amount of times before people stop talking to you) and I’ve found maybe a handful of folks who’ve heard of them. Yet here tonight in Hell’s Kitchen of all places at a venue where I’ve heard several concert goers in the past complain about sound and sightlines we’ve got a full house of adoring fans of a band that barely comes to this country. Is there an after party? The band hit the stage before 9:10, kicking the night off with a track off the new record 48:13 . The song is called ‘Bumblebee’.

There are times where you go see a favorite band who’ve recently put out a new record and they shove it down your throat the next time you see them live. Filling you with that “new car smell’ as I say. Tonight this was not the case as Kasabian seemed to hit every person in the building g-spot at some point during the evening. I keep turning towards the crowd because those kids are going bananas. They’re having so much fun and really, is that the point of all this?

Tom Kasabian 2

It’s hard to call a 16 song set ‘career-spanning’, but band followed Bumblebee with Shoot The Runner and Underdog before hitting us with another new one Stevie, which rocked way harder than it did for me when I sat down and listened to the record recently. Sometimes it’s just better live.  Days Are Forgotten preceded another track off 48:13 Eez-Uh,

followed by an oldie: Processed Beats. These guys are kicking my ass. I wanted to tweet some stuff during the set but I was firmly set with one goal in mind: Record This Entire Fucking Set. So when The Doberman went right into Take Aim right into Club Foot-I shot that.

When possibly my favorite track from this band Re-Wired got played before Treat and Empire-I shot that. And when the crazyiness of Fire ensued-well, you get the point. Jeez it was so hectic up in there when the band ducked off at 10:15. How does this band not headline festivals in THIS side of the pond? (Not counting once at Coachella)

Serge Kasabian

If anything is obvious here tonight it’s the on stage bromance that Serge and Tom have going on is nothing short of BFF status. After more than a few songs Tom walks over and slaps Serge, who sports a raccoon’s tail hanging from his ass a five. Mailing it in is something this band isn’t about. Maybe that’s why the one cool Beatle left digs them. Serge and (if Wiki has it right) Tim are having a little guitar noise circus over here far left side of the stage, or right below from my point of view. The encore consisted of Switchblade Smiles, Vlad The Impaler and L.S.F. (Lost Souls Forever). Before L.S.F., we got into a few minutes of a cover of Fatboy Slim’s Praise You.

That was a fun thing to throw in.

Tom Kasabian

There was a keyboard/noise box thing near Serge and he’d go over and jam out on it on occasion and dance mid stage. At the end of L.S.F. Tom sings the chorus to

All You Nee Is Love and just like that in a blink of a eye Kasabian had once again conquered Terminal 5.. and it was over.

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If you needed anymore proof that Americans are stupid it’s the fact that this band hasn’t “hit it big” here like they have back home. Now all 3,000+ of us in that building tonight are sitting asking the same question we asked two years ago: Will they ever come back? Even if the answer to that ends up being ‘No’, it’s good to know that I’ve been able to rock with them twice. If you’re viewing this and there’s only two videos up congrats, you showed up early. Every song from the evening is being uploading as I type and as you read and will be added as they publish. Until next time folks, thanks for having me.

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Late.

Local H Say Good-Bye to Brian In New York City – 10/5/13 – Santos Party House

Local H Santos

I know I’ve only written a few reviews and one of them was a Local H review, but I just have to do another one after catching them in New York. This was a big trip for me for three reasons. One, I had never been to New York and it was on my bucket list of things to do before I turn 40 (which is funny because I’m only 3-4 hours away). Two, this was one of the last shows that Brian would be playing with Local H. They weren’t coming to the Maryland area which is why I had to go New York to catch them. Three, I got to meet a fellow concert confessions writer in person – Jay!

So, I put out an invite to all my friends and two of them bit: Dana and Bob. Dana had her Local H cherry popped a year ago when I took her to her first Local H show, but Bob had never seen them before. He’s a big music nerd like the rest of us so I was really excited for him to FINALLY be able to see Local H. I’ve been trying for years to get him to come to one of their shows and have always failed in my attempts.

It’s a beautiful Saturday afternoon, a little after 11:00 and we all meet up at Dana’s house and I was the volunteer driver so we hopped in my car and took off. The three hour drive seemed to just fly by and it was close to 3:00 by the time we drove through the Lincoln Tunnel. After crossing through to the other side, I was immediately met with traffic, pedestrians, and car horns blowing every single second. We found our hotel (right in the heart of the city) with no problems but parking was a pain as we drove around, trying to figure out where to park. During our 20 minute parking excursion, I’m sure I heard 1 million car horns blowing and came close to hitting at least 300 pedestrians….soooo this is what NYC is like? Got it! I decided to give my car horn a try for no reason at all!

We finally found a spot to park my car. It was street parking and we didn’t have to pay and it was right around the corner from our hotel! Score! My car stayed in that spot until we left the following evening. After checking in our little crappy hotel that cost an arm and leg, we got out and checked out Time Square. The only thing I can say is: Wow! There were so many people, so much to see, and walking was the best way to do it because you really got to take it all in. Around 5:00 or so, we stopped in Planet Hollywood to have some dinner and that’s where Jay met up with us. It was cool to meet another cool person that I had only known online. I was hoping he was going to hit up the Local H show so maybe we could have done a duel review but he had a special invite to go see Soul Asylum and you can check out his review on our page! After we finished our chatting, we all left together and parted ways at the subway; and Jay was a big help in making sure we were going in the right direction and hooking us up with a subway card!

When we arrived at Santo’s Party House, there were two lines outside the club and we quickly learned that Eye Empire was playing at the same place. There are two stages in this building which I had no idea. The line for Local H was about 50-75 people deep already and we found our spot at the end of the line. The doors were supposed to open at 6:30 but it was after 7:00 by the time they opened up. I was anxious for this show for a couple of reasons. I wanted to see what it was like to see Local H in a totally different state than what I usually do, I was curious to find out if the crowd would be the same or not, and I couldn’t wait to see if they played “California songs” because of the “…and fuck New York too” line.

When we entered the club, it wasn’t much different than the clubs here in Maryland. It had two bars, wasn’t too big, and had a big disco ball on the ceiling. It was a nice little club. It didn’t take long for the opening band to start. They were a band from Chicago named “Monkey Paw.” I had never heard of them but they were pretty good and did a good job warming me up for Local H. They were a 3 piece band that had some similar sounds to Local H but also had some jam type sounds in there too. I felt like they sounded great live but wouldn’t be all that great on a CD or listening to them on the radio. They were good though and worth checking out if ever given the chance.

Once Monkey Paw finished up, it didn’t take long for Local H to hit the stage. I was surprised at how early they were going on and that they were done playing by 10:00. Bob found out that they do a dance party at the club so that’s why the show was so early…which worked out well for us because we got more play time in the city!

Local H opened up with “Terrible Love” and they proceeded to rip through song after song with a nice mix of both old songs as well as new. What I noticed about the crowd was that it wasn’t much different than the Maryland area crowds. You had your hard-core Local H fans in the front, singing every single lyric to every single song, you had the drunk guys in the front who were too big, old, and drunk to be up close as they invaded everyone’s personal space because it was “their world and no one else’s,” and you had the entire crowd singing along to the well- known songs. What caught me off guard was that I saw a dude there that I see at ALL the Local H shows in the DC area. I’ve spoken to him once or twice before and while I can’t remember his name, I do remember him telling me he follows Local H around a lot, taking pictures, and Scott knows him by name…or he may have just been trying to make himself look good. He’s a male groupie either way!

Brain St. Clair Local H

It was surreal seeing Local H in New York City. For some reason, to me, it seemed more “professional” or more solid than their shows are in DC. They still sounded just as great and still put on just as awesome of a show as always, but it seemed more “big-time.” However, that could have just been all on me since I had never been to NYC before and it seemed very big and busy to me. I also seemed to be the only one amused when they did play “California Songs” and they did sing “and fuck New York too.” It made me laugh, but it doesn’t take much to amuse me. No one else seemed to think anything of it…oh well! One thing I noticed was that Scott didn’t talk to the crowd in NYC as much as he usually does in DC. He did talk to the NYC crowd but he seems more laid back at the DC shows.

Scott Lucas

Towards the end of the show, Scott informed the audience that they were there for two reasons. One was to make up the show there that they had to cancel when Scott got choked in Russia and the second reason was to say good-bye to Brian. After he said that, the crowd went into a cheer for Brian that seemed like it lasted forever but it was only a few minutes. As the crowd was cheering for Brian, his back was turned as it usually is during the breaks between songs but after a minute, he actually turned around and waved at the crowd and said thank you. Scott made the comment that he’s NEVER seen Brian do that…EVER! So I guess New York gave Brian some good vibes on this night! Here is my video of that:

http://www.youtube.com/edit?ns=1&video_id=6LhS_0XRGzY

After they were done, Scott did his crowd surfing over to the merchandise table like he always does and a line quickly formed with pretty much everyone in the place so we could buy some things and chat with Scott. I was disappointed that Brian didn’t hang out; he usually doesn’t but it would have been nice if he did so we all could have said good-bye to him. I bought another Local H shirt (not that I really need anymore) and Dana bought one as well, but she was having trouble figuring out which size to buy. Scott told her, in a very feminine voice, that he understood her female troubles and proceeded to take the next few minutes and help her decide which size to get. After she picked her size, she also told him she wanted a CD in which case he yelled, “Oh Shit!” I thought he was going to say that he was all out, but no…he had said that because, he said, “he had to make himself be a man again!” I can’t make this shit up!!

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Overall the show was killer and I’m glad I took the trip up there to see Brian perform one last time with Local H. He was such a great fit with Scott and the music that is Local H that I don’t know how Scott is ever going to replace him. I’m going to miss looking over and seeing Brian whaling away on those drums, looking like “Animal” from The Muppets and not missing a beat. I have a couple of his drums sticks though!!

Going back to the drunken dudes in front of me, when Local H started playing “Fritz’s Corner” they went nuts and had their own private mosh pit. They scared Dana and Bob off to the side of the stage but I stood my ground and my short video of that song clearly shows me being shoved right before I decide to stop the video in fear of dropping the camera. Check it out:

Dana enjoyed her second Local H show and Bob, commented that they were really good! As for me, I’m crossing my fingers that Scott doesn’t take too long to get Local H back out on the road; as I’ve said before:  a life without live Local H shows is a life I NEVER want to experience. Just for the hell of it, here is a picture of me with Brian and Scott that I took back in 2008 when they were doing an acoustic performance in a music shop:

2008

One odd thing about this show was that they didn’t do “bound for the floor” and “high-fiving mother fucker.” Scott did say that Brian pretty much came up with the set list so I guess Brian was all floored and mother fuckered out!

The set list for this night was:

Terrible Love

Heaven on the Way Down

Eddie Vedder

They Saved Reagan’s Brain

The one with Kid

Fine and Good

Hands on the Bible

Cold Manor

California Songs

Half Life

Another February

Nothing Special

All-Right (Oh, Yeah)

All the Kids are Right

User

Fritz’s Corner

What Would You Have Me Do?

Wolf Like Me

Fountains of Wayne, Soul Asylum & Evan Dando – Webster Hall, New York City 10/05/13

Fountains Of Wayne, Soul Asylum and Evan Dando – 10/05/2013

Webster Hall – New York City

Words/Photos/Videos- Jay Porks

rsz_threepeat

Sometimes I write these things feeling the need to put H.G. Wells in the byline because I really have a knack for taking folks through a time machine from time to time. And that happens again tonight. What goes on people? Welcome back to another Jay Porks Experience. Big night for shows in New York City that this guy would attend, as we have Local H up a Santos Party House while Fountains of Wayne and Soul Asylum split a bill at Webster Hall with Evan Dando opening up. Tough decisions had to be made (to be discussed more in detail at the bottom), and we’re on our way to Webster Hall tonight for the triple bill. Doors opening at 6PM with a 7PM showtime, my thoughts are similar to all the other times I’ve head to Webster Hall: What time does “club night” start? This venue is notorious for hosting multiple shows on their multiple floors at simultaneous times  full of Djs, glow sticks, Molly and EDM. The only time I want to see glow sticks and Molly is at Phish, but that’s another story for another day. Tonight we head way back to a time where my life was simple. Early-mid 90’s. A young Porks, enjoying the sounds of Runaway Train, Come On Feel The Lemonheads, and a really cool Radiation Vibe video. Beats today’s world of leaving the job I hate heading directly into the city to see an awesome show followed by coming home to do a job I love before heading directly back to that same job I hate. So, let’s get started with that job I love, shall we?

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Made my way inside Webster Hall slightly before 7PM. Grabbed the photo pass I scored and headed upstairs to the VIP section. Grabbed a table, ordered a drink, took a seat. Evan Dando walks out 7 sharp with his Telecaster and began to play his solo set. I think it was a telecaster anyway, I’m no guitar tech I just like them. When Dando was announced opening solo it was assumed (by this guy anyway) that he’s be acoustic, or have a no name band behind him. Not the case, Dando and a lyric sheet on a stand.

Played tuned down versions of a lot of fan favorites. Confetti, Into Your Arms, My Drug Buddy and All My Life drew the biggest cheers throughout the half hour. And no messiness ensued. Not like the It’s A Shame About Ray tour from two years ago. This was solid, this was beautiful. And with Dando alone on stage and me upstairs, the acoustics in the room sounded great. Even on the videos, the sound sounds a lot better before Dando went off at 7:30 and I made my way downstairs to get a tee shirt.

Why waste the VIP section? Might as well head downstairs and grab a tee shirt before the end of the night when it’s a madhouse down there. And I don’t have clothes that fit me anymore, so now at every show I have to be sure to grab a medium  because my wardrobe consists of band tee shirts (not exactly a shopper). So I grabbed myself a blue Fountains Of Wayne shirt for 20 bucks because it had a boombox on it and I thought it was cool. Can’t argue with 20 bucks. Heading back upstairs and I’m met by security. “Photo pass not upstairs only VIP”. That’s some real deal fuckery right there. You have an upstairs level THAT I WAS JUST ON containing a maximum of 15 people up there, 7 of them being model type woman that I’m sure are all Evan Dando +1’s. I’m one person. There’s not even a pit here if memory recalls. I was upstairs for Toadies/Helmet/Ume with a photo pass. I was upstairs at the Melvins with a regular ticket. Webster Hall: You make it extremely hard to enjoy a concert experience.

Dave Pirner

Soul Asylum is poised for a 7:45 start time according to a sheet of paper taped on a wall. So making my way down front, I do notice about a foot or two of space between the stage and the barricade. So like the annoying guy I am, I slide through some folks and make it in there. I notice two girls are there, so I join them and try and take some of those cool shots from down low like all my cool “professional” photographer friends do, working with the light show and stuff. Not exactly Mick Rock, but I actually got some decent shots. Pirner and the boys kicked things off with an energetic “Stand Up And Be Strong”.

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Was in the pit for “Misery”, so recording wasn’t an option 3rd song in. With each line, each chord  of the song my appreciation becomes deeper it was cool to snap pictures while screaming the lyrics out. Not only am I having a blast but there’s a room full of people behind the barricade wondering what the hell this hack is doing sitting at the cool kids table.

Funny thing about Soul Asylum, they have all these songs about tons of different topics, some of them darker than others. Yet, these dudes look like they’re having the time of their lives. Pirner is jumping around the stage with the hair blocking his face making you swear this was 1993 all over again.

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Their drummer looks like King Mabel from old school WWF. That’s not a “because he’s black” joke or a “because he’s a bigger dude” joke. That’s a “This guy looks like if the kit doesn’t sound perfect he’s gonna stare it down until it does Chuck Norris style”. It was pretty flawless. Whole band was tight. “Black Gold” and “Leave This Town” were intense. Dave Pirner states before they jump into “Can’t Even Tell”: “This song is dedicated to… Jay and Silent Bob”. Hell yeah. Of course you know by sets end we got our “Runaway Train” and “Somebody To Shove”, which were awesome to experience live but at the same time the sound downstairs in the front is low on the vocals. Several of us looking at each other pointing to our ears. After the set I reached for the set list, and some dude behind me wanted it, I could tell in his voice he needed that set list. I figured since it wasn’t handwritten or anything, then all I needed of it was a picture. I gave it to dude. He’s like “Thanks man you rock! I gotta go I’m off to another show!”

Me: Local H at Santos?

 

Him: Yeah!!

 

Me: Tell Scott I said Hi and tell Brian I love the shit out of him.

Fountains Of Wayne / Chris Collingwood

Life’s funny isn’t it? Between sets, I notice the girl hanging in the photo pit, so I go over to find out whose payroll she’s on. She with Brooklyn Vegan? Spin? Maybe Pitchfork, I’d so badly love to make fun of one of those people in real life. But no, she’s homegrown. Doing her own thing for a few different things (which links will be provided for shortly), Jay Porks style. I like that. So we may or may not have had a moment which mimicked the Sonic Youth ‘Dirty Boots’ music video in the photo pit. Maybe. Some of us have class and would never kiss and tell.

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Fountains of Wayne hit the stage at 9:15 just as a random piece of paper taped on the wall indicated earlier. “I’ve Got A Flair”, “Dip In The Ocean” and “Joe Rey”. These dudes have power. They’re like if Weezer took LSD. Feedback flying everywhere, jammy portions at times then dance-y sections at times. This whole bill is like, the REAL Summerland. I turn to my new buddy and mention how miserable they look. She agrees. I mean, here we just had Soul Asylum up there entertaining the shit out of themselves. Chris Collingwood has this dead stare on, this being the first time I’m ever seeing this band, maybe that’s how dude is. Didn’t effect their performance or anything, I just like when people are happy. Moods heightened increasingly throughout the set.

Only thing wrong with anything that went down on stage tonight is due to low vocals down in the front area. If the reply to that inquisition is “Well you’re too close to the speakers” then that barricade needs to be moved further back so people don’t end up hating the place they attend shows. And Webster Hall, if you would have allowed me reentry to the upstairs section you’d avoid getting abused in this review, and in depth on episode five of my weekly podcast.


Anyway, in the pit snapping shots. Not sure how many songs we’re allowed in here but we’re up to song four and no one has booted us. Time to sin. I’m taking video in the photo pit. Yes folks, I did it. I violated the holy grail of the photo pass. It was “Mexican Wine”, I HAD to do it. But I kept the camera low, and tapped the top pretending to snap shots until right after that song security came and booted me from somewhere for the 2nd time tonight. Another crowd favorite, ‘Red Dragon Tattoo‘ followed by a more recent offering ‘Summer Place” put everyone in the building right where they needed to be mentally.

Fountains Of Wayne

A few songs later, it’s “Hey Julie” time. The bass player tells us this is where participants from the crowd come up on stage to assist, playing cymbals and rattles along to the song. A bunch of hot girls hit the stage and started a freaking party. So much love for that song already, but now it’s just even more fun. Set up the rest of theevenings proceedings featuring “I-95” into “It Must Be Summer” followed by another Porks favorite: “Someone To Love”. Great place to squeeze in “Traffic and Weather” here, but unfortunately they didn’t bust it out. Sad face emoticon. “No Better Place” preceded  a really heady “Sink To The Bottom”.. which was epic before they ended with some spine tingly feedback bursts. They ducked off stage before coming out for the song that is the reason America (outside of the people in this venue) knows who this band is, “Stacy’s Mom”.

I’ll say it, and believe me or not I don’t care. I’m a “Radiation Vibe” Fountains of Wayne fan. I go back to the beginning. I loved that song, visited the store they named the band after as a child. When “Stacy’s Mom” came out, to me it was just “Awesome, they have themselves another hit. This band rocks”. Being in the building for it was just so freaking cool, and then to jump right into the aforementioned “Radiation Vibe” to close down the show was the only way that show could have ended, and it did. 10:33 and we’re done here.

Walking out of Webster Hall in a great mood, what a night. Like to thank Wes Kidd and the people at Red Light Management who were involved with helping to hook me up with the photo pass. That was awesome to be on the other side of the barricade for once. Also, before the show we had a little meeting of Concert Confessions family members as I got to meet our friend SluggerA in Times Square during her first trip to New York City in for the night to see Local H. Funny how everyone I’ve met on the internet are cool as hell and most of the people I run into in real life are complete douchenozzles. Good times!

 

Meat Puppets Brooklyn Bowl October 12th… do I even need to mention where to find that review on the the morning of the 13th? Catch you then!

Late

Dinosaur Jr & Friends – Terminal 5 New York City 12/01/12

Dinosaur Jr + Special Guests – 12/01/2012

Terminal 5 – New York City

Words/Photos/Videos – Jay Porks

In two weeks, Dinosaur Jr‘s second studio record “You’re Living All Over Me” will turn 25 years old-why wait til then to start the celebration? Tonight, in the 81st Edition of the Jay Porks Never Ending Concert Series we return to Terminal 5 in New York City (610 West 56th Street) for what is billed as “Dinosaur Jr’s 25th anniversary of “You’re Living All Over Me” with Very Special Friends Sitting In and Special Guest Kurt Vile” Well, it’s well known that if the ticket says Dinosaur Jr and I can get there via Bus, Train and/or Boat-chances are I’m getting myself in the building. Kurt Vile and The Violators supporting, if nothing else, peaks my interest for an opening band. And Vile’s a bitchin’ guitar player so sitting in should be fun as well. But friends? Who? Weeks after I bought tickets a few names sprinkled out. Johnny Marr will be here. Dale Crover will be here. Al Cisneros will be here. Frank Black will be here and Kim Gordon will be here. If that’s not enough, there’s going to be two Dinosaur Jr sets, first playing the record and the second being a collection of hits ranging the band’s whole catalog. There’s still the extreme likely possibility that more guests will appear tonight on stage. Anything can happen. Let’s hope “anything” means “everything that you can think of in the world” tonight.

In my first trip into Manhattan in a post- Sandy world, I found myself outside on line to get into Terminal 5 at 6:30 with doors set to open at 7. Had to take a cab from the ferry because the (1) train line is totally fucked.  Got dropped off a two blocks up, I need the workout anyway . Felt like forever standing out there on line-not because it was cold. It was my anxiety, my prayers to several gods to be able to obtain my awesome third floor spot. I was about 100 deep in the line and another 100 people (at least) were behind me by the time doors opened. We got in and I ran up two flights of stairs to find exactly what I was looking: an empty third floor with plenty of chairs and ottomans to keep me comfortable until showtime. After I grabbed myself a Pepsi, it was already 7:30.

At 8 o clock Kurt Vile and the Violators hit the stage. They impressed everyone by the end of their set. Each songs having a different feel, kept thanking us for being a “beautiful audience”. They seem like a band that should have been around when bands like Dinosaur Jr and Sonic Youth were getting big in the late 80’s. They have that psychedelic thing going, but the sweet melodies are what, well, keep making me want to compare them to Dinosaur Jr. Was that an 18 string acoustic I saw Kurt Vile bust out on a song called “Freeway” or am I wrong? He changed guitars every single song. I like guitars, so this is a plus in my book. And we share a haircut. His voice is very punky, the tone is perfect for this kind of show. You know-effects pedals everywhere and extended noise jams. I recorded their song “Monkey”. Awesome job by them. It was 8:40 when they went off.

Truth be told, I haven’t listened to “You’re Living All Over Me” front to back in a few years. So I had to go back this past week leading up to the show and re-brush myself up on the masterpiece that is that album. After kicking off the night with “Thumb”(with a chick on stage playing the flute.. or a clarinet) , our first guest of the evening hit the stage next and was our first surprise guest of the evening: Lee Ranaldo(of Sonic Youth fame).

He provided some vocals on the record’s first track, “Little Fury Things”. So here we are, for the next 46 or so minutes watching Dinosaur Jr just kill it. I mean it’s not like I haven’t seen this band kill it before, this is my forth time. But they’re getting better. J Mascis takes a cerebral attack towards his playing, making his guitar his total bitch. This is beyond distortion, this is beautiful madness at it’s finest. At one point his guitar sounded like a flock of doves-I’m serious. And I’m up here, sitting on a chair, (Low to the ground like an ottoman, yet it has a back like a chair. Very comfortable) 3rd floor Terminal 5- not taping. I’m taking this whole album in right now strictly like a normal fan, we do have two sets after all. I’m under an influence alright-the heavy drug known as awesome music. I’m checking out the crowd, they’re going nuts, slamming into each other and crowd surfing like crazy. I mean, it’s a very tiny part of me, but part of me wanted to be down there smashing myself into strangers. But the sea of people doesn’t end as I keep turning my head-this place is packed to the gills (and my “private” section has turned into a full house) One note, I know here in NYC we have some less than desirable fans in the crowd who throw stuff on stage. Usually empty beer cups- I know I’ve been hit with several beers in the pit at past shows. But tonight, it was hoodies exclusively being thrown. I hate to break the news to these people that although it’s hot in the pit it’s still cold outside. Keep glancing over to the rhythm section to see Murph is the only person in shorts, beating the kit with everything he had on ever song he drummed on. I could tell, he worked up quite a sweat. And Lou. Every time I looked in that direction his head was down, bass hanging real low and he was just creating earthquakes over there with his heavy bass licks.

At 10:01 Murph and J dart off stage and the lights dim, revealing Lou Barlow alone, holding a Ukelele ready to play “Poledo” solo, adding that this is an “awkward end to an amazing record” before cranking out the oddity but goody.

This was advertised as two sets, and the bill fit the length of what you’d get out of two sets. But props to the band for not making us wait like 15 minutes in between. Frank Black (or is it Black Francis these days? I get them mixed up) former Pixies frontman was on stage by 10:06. He’s here to “help out on one of the songs off the new record “I Bet on Sky” according to J. After they played the tune, Mr Black hands the gigantic hand drawn lyric sheet he had in front of him to a lucky member of the crowd, re-tunes his guitar and next thing you know you’re hearing the lyric “hips like Cinderella” and we’re jumping into “Tame”.

Dinosaur Jr and Frank Black doing “Tame”. Are you freaking serious?!?! Pass me a tissue, I just wet myself. it was so perfect, so right for this evening. So many joyous screams.

A great old tracked popped up “Alone”, a great new track from the new record popped up, “Watch The Corners” and here comes Johnny Marr at around 1045. Besides that crappy band with Morrissey, I loved Johnny Marr’s stuff with Modest Mouse and he is a highly regarded guitar player. He’s actually releasing his debut solo record later this year. He lended a hand on “The Wagon”. Then they brought out a lyric sheet on a stand for J as they got into a song I didn’t know.

Thankfully we live in the 21st century and Twitter was buzzing within seconds chiming in with the song title: “The Boy with The Thorn in his Side“, a Smiths cover. There was another guest vocalist up there(thanks to fellow fans comments, it was pointed out to me that it was  Kevin Drew from Broken Social Scene) .At least it wasn’t Morrissey. Dale Crover(of the Melvins) was out there drumming on the Smiths cover with them. Al Cisneros (known for his work in Sleep and OM) was on and off stage throughout the evening as well as Kurt Vile. Don Fleming(used to be in a band called Gumball) came on stage to cover a song by the band Iron Cross called “Crucified For Your Sins”. Your a typical hard rocking DC punk rock anthem to perk up the pit as some start to sober up. It was intense.

And at 11:09 Kim Gordon hops on stage. The sexist 59 year old chick I’ve ever seen, since her recent divorce with Thurston Moore (in turn, putting all things Sonic Youth on indefinite hiatus) Kim spends these days playing in an experimental noise rock duo with Bill Nace called Body/Head. Surprised Kim’s lungs didn’t come flying out of her chest during “Don’t”.

That one that requires screaming multiplied by a million. I hated when the band played this song last year(Review of that show here) because they let some fan sing the vocal and he kept slamming the microphone down and had an annoying scream. Kim was awesome, I just wish there was some better lighting in there for me to grab a better picture of her. Well, the lighting was good, but the shine from the drum set was messing with my camera. Everybody ducked off stage at 11:19

They came back out not long after. You know, there was one kid I saw outside wearing a Replacements tee shirt. At the time I saw it I said to myself “Sweet..the Replacements”. That must’ve been my spider senses tingling, because out for the encore on bass is none other than Tommy Stinson from the Replacements! Tommy also plays in the fake Guns N’ Roses band that Axl Rose tours with these days. And there’s my buddy John Petkovic (see Mike Watt & Friends 05/02/12) on vocals-and they’re playing The Stooges! “TV Eye”. The pit was chaos once again.

I had read reviews claiming Fred Arminsen was on stage at one point and I had to look back at my pictures a day later and notice that he is in fact drumming on “TV Eye”.  I was  having such a good time I missed the Portlandia star. “Start Choppin” followed and then our night ended with “Freak Scene”. The house music came on slightly after 11:30.

Dinosaur Jr never disappoints, but that my friends was something for the ages. I’ve placed a picture of the set list below.  Enjoy the videos as they upload! Late.

NYCTaper has a great capture of this show available for download. You can click this link here to check out all the audio goodies

The Darkness – Terminal 5 New York City 10/21/12

The Darkness (w/ The Dirty Pearls & Sweatheart) – 10/21/2012

Terminal 5 – New York City

Words/Photos/Video – Jay Porks

Well, today was another case of me being on my way to a bitchin’ rock show while one of my professional sports teams loses in heartbreaking fashion. Thursday was the Yankees, and before tonight’s show kicked off the Jets had lost in overtime. Speaking of the show- Hello everyone, and welcome to the 80th edition of the Jay Porks Never Ending Concert Series (I’m told there’s a watch waiting for me at # 100) which takes us to Terminal 5 (610 West 56th Street) in the Hell’s Kitchen area of New York City to see The Darkness play one of their two shows on this side of the pond in support of their new album ‘Hot Cakes’, which you should go buy if you haven’t. Now, the only bad news is that Foxy Shazam is not in the building (they opened up for the band at Irving Plaza in February) but we’ve got two other openers to make a case for themselves here tonight as we have ‘Sweatheart’ and ‘The Dirty Pearls’ due up before everyone’s favorite cock-rockers hit the stage. Doors are at 7, with showtime at 7:30. Let’s roll.

 

After a pretty intense walk from the train station, I made it to the entrance at 6:47 where they were already bringing people in and having them wait on the roof top smoke deck not to crowd the streets of Manhattan. Did I mention I’m wearing a suit? Well, last night my friend Janine (who was at The Offspring with Pam and I) got married and the ceremony was so awesome I figured why not let the good times roll on into Sunday night. I mean, it’s the Darkness we’re talking about here-must keep it classy. So they let us in at 7 and I’m dashing to my usual spot on the 3rd floor when I’m stopped by event staff. First he’s asking me for my VIP sticker (because I’m wearing a suit I guess) and when I tell him I’m a regular fan he informs me that the 3rd floor is not open this evening. I said “What’s that, due to lack of ticket sales or something?” he nodded. I cannot believe the Darkness are underselling this place? It holds 3,000- They sold out both nights at Irving Plaza in February, granted it’s a third of the size I figured this show would be sold out for months. Bummer. So my new spot is right behind the sound board and the guy controlling the lights, I’m looking down at all the action, hey there’s the Darkness set list right there on the table-let me just copy all these songs down and scout out when I’m going to tape. This spot I grabbed is on the 2nd floor, straight in the back. Finally get to see the stage background thing that bands always hang but I never see because I prefer a side view.

 At 7:31 Philadelphia’s own “Sweatheart” hit the stage. No, I’m not misspelling the word Sweetheart-it’s actually Sweatheart. They have a mannequin siting at the key board , several members wearing black hoods, (Halloween is around the corner after all). Once she removes the black hooded thing, this lead singer has a this skin tight bodysuit hot enough to keep my attention, and that girl’s name is Amanda Blank. For a half hour, they dropped their weirdness on us, filled with plenty of innuendo and crotch grabbing to explain why they were indeed opening for the Darkness. Justin Hawkins says this band did the animation for their music video “Nothin’s Gonna Stop Us”. As I watched I kept trying to pin what sub-genre they fall under. They were like Bubblegum-Heavy, but when I came home, I read that they’re “performance rock”, and the band’s website says: “Approachable Stadium Pop, Man Jams (with Women) or Community College Rock. No wait, 80’s Screwball Comedy Soundtrack Rock”. Well whatever it was it sounded good to me, I like bands with a sense of humor (and a hot lead singer who openly discusses ejaculating on breasts). I did not see a bass player. They went off at 8:02

Things are moving quick on stage, as it only took til 8:13, for The Dirty Pearls to come on and rock this joint out-and they did. This band was more straight ahead Rock N’ Roll. Here we have a hometown band with a lead singer wearing sunglasses indoors and two guitar players playing nothing but gnarly fucking riffs man. Fuck Eddie Van Halen. I’m starting to get packed into this little spot here as people are catching on to this awesome view. Only one slow jam from them: “You Got Me Where You Want Me” to counter act the hard hitting songs like “Bruises” and the track that ended their set, “New York City Is A Drug”. They just released their debut full length record “Whether You Like It Or Not” which you can download at the bands website. Good times. They went off at 8:47

At 912 when “The Boys are Back in town ” started blasting through the PA, you knew that the boys were in fact back in town as the Darkness hit the stage. The band has a new record out called “Hot Cakes” and it’s spectacular. They have two U.S. Dates supporting this effort-that;s right TWO. Us NYC folk get them, as well as the City of Angels in a few days. Not surprising they’d began the evening with the first song on the new effort, “Every Inch Of You”.

Dan Hawkins in a Thin Lizzy tee shirt while Justin is in his usual Freddie Mercury style shiny white jump suit. “Black Shuck” followed with “Growing On Me” really had this place (well, the two floors of the place) rocking.

I mean, I know about a handful of people who are as into this band as I am-not everyone is smart enough to get these guys. But the ones who do were here tonight, as hands were waving, people in the back on the first floor were dancing (good idea for the playlist if I ever get married-The Darkness), just good vibes all around this place. “She’s Just A Girl Eddie” was our next Hot Cakes track to appear, and people already knew the words to it! This isn’t even one of their singles.

“One Way Ticket” came next and it featured a pause in the middle of the song as Justin was kicking guitar picks with his heel until finally the bass player caught one on like the seventh try to a resounding ovation.

Then before they played “Nothin’s Gonna Stop Us” we were informed about how Sweatheart did the music video for them, and they were very grateful. Towards the end of “Get Your Hands Off My Woman” Justin had pointed to some fan in the crowd, who raced up through the sea of people to the front, where he was dragged on stage to help out on the “mother fucker” audience participation part of the song. That guy was funny. He took off his shirt and threw it at Dan, before walking over and taking a sip of Justin’s water. All of a sudden this guy’s a rockstar now. Awesome. Justin told him “end it with a leap!” and he did, he leaped right into Justin’s arms before grabbing his shirt and diving into the crowd to be surfed to the back of the room. Priceless.

I find it funny that the band has two songs on the set list that start with the word love and they choose to put them back to back. That’s the case next when the band busted out “Love Is Not The Answer” followed by my personal highlight of this evening: “Love Is Only A Feeling”.

This is a song where Dan gets some time to shine with his gee-tar..See, back at Irving Plaza when I saw this band, event staff made me put my camera away before I was able to tape this epic ballard. So I was thrilled to be rolling when they jammed out on that one before Justin ran back stage to change jump suits. Tattoos much? Jeez I thought that said “Thug Life” across the stomach for a second. This guy’s bad ass. In the black and silver jumper, an older tune “Friday Night” was followed by two new tracks “Concrete” and “Everybody Have A Good Time”.

This is the part where I say “The Darkness Covered Radiohead!!”

but it’s not a rare thing as they do “Street Spirit (Fade Out)” live almost every set, so much so that they recorded a version of it for Hot Cakes. I have to be honest here, I’m not a fan of this song much as a Radiohead song, but The Darkness knock that shit out of the park. The band was in rare form tonight, and I hate myself for living in the only borough you need to take a boat to get to and having to leave right after that because of the Ferry’s Sunday scheduling. Justin was introducing “Givin’ Up” on my way out, as I heard him saying “Hey, you want to hear me and my brother sing a song about Heroin?”. What a great freaking band.

I had copied down the set list before the show started from the sound board, you can find that below this little photo gallery. So pissed at myself for having to duck out of there, but as with life, stuff happens. Once the videos upload, they’ll all be posted right here. The Darkness covering Radiohead is first up of course. And oh yeah, check out my awesome photos. Seriously, I’m getting pretty good at this.

Set List:

 

Every Inch of You
Black Shuck
Growing on Me
She’s Just A Girl Eddie
One Way Ticket
Nothin’s gonna stop us
Get Your Hands Off My Woman
Love Is Not The Answer
Love Is Only A Feeling
Friday Night
Concrete
Everybody Have A Good Time
Street Spirit (Fade Out) [Radiohead Cover]
Givin’ Up
Stuck In A Rut
I Believe In A Thing Called Love

—-Encore—-

With a Woman
Hazel Eyes
Love On The Rocks With Ice

 


Phish Announces New Year’s Run In New York City

Phish Announces New Year’s Run In New York City

This December, Phish returns to Madison Square Garden in New York, New York for a four-show Holiday/NYE Run to close out 2012. The band has played 23 shows to date at MSG. For the first time ever, the floor at these four Madison Square Garden shows will be general admission.

An online ticket request period is currently underway at tickets.phish.com/ and will end Monday, October 15 at Noon EST.

Tickets will go on sale to the general public beginning Saturday, October 20, at Noon ET at ticketmaster.com or can be charged by phone at 866.858.0008.

If tickets are still available, they may be purchased at the venue box office beginning Monday, October 22. Box office hours are Monday-Saturday, 9 AM – 6 PM. Tickets may also be purchased at select TicketMaster outlets.

Ghostwolf (Featuring SA from 311) Announces US Shows

Ghostwolf (Featuring SA from 311) Announces US Shows

Ghostwolf is the side project of SA from 311. We are not sure if you can call three shows a tour, but that won’t stop us from sharing with you where and when you can see the group this fall. The gigs will take place in Los Angeles, Omaha and New York City, but you could probably already tell that from the above banner. The band will be joined for these shows by Exes of Evil, which of course you can also tell from the banner above.

Ghostwolf September 2012 US Tour Dates:

09/20/12 – Molly Malone’s/Los Angeles, CA

09/22/12 – Slowdown/Omaha, NE

09/29/12 – Grammercy Theatre/New York, NY

To keep up with all things Ghostwolf, check out their official Facebook page by clicking here.

 

 

Watch Garbage’s Entire Webster Hall Show

Watch Garbage’s Entire Webster Hall Show (New York City May 22nd 2012)

I’m getting old.

In previous years, a guy like myself would have made his way into the city earlier this evening to catch Garbage destroy Webster Hall.  But that wasn’t the case as this writer not only wasn’t in the building, but was admittedly asleep for the entire duration of the Webcast courtesy of MTV HIVE.

Fate is a funny thing. You ever fall asleep early and wake up like 3Am with absolutely nothing to do, and you’re saying to yourself “What the F#%K man?!”. Well, that happened to me, then I found this Garbage webcast seems to be still up available to watch. And I didn’t even have high hopes I’ll be honest, I just turned it on hoping they’d lead off with “I’m Only Happy When It Rains” (which they didn’t). But I gotta tell you I’m like six songs into this right now and  Garbage is freakin’ killin’ it! Shirley Manson may have a inverted Princess Leia hairstyle going on, but I would still do all sorts of things to her that would have me fired if mentioned by the Concert Confessions Human Resources Department..

And here come’s “Stupid Girl”! Okay, sorry people, I’m done writing this thing I gotta focus on watching this stream. This video down below was courtesy of MTV HIVE but they took it offline.  We have since found the performance on YouTube, but as always know that this could vanish faster than Viacom can scream Third Party Copyright Claim. 

Mike Watt & Friends 05/02/12: Le Poisson Rouge, NYC

Mike Watt & Friends 05/02/2012

Le Poisson Rouge -New York City

Words/Photos By Jay Porks

Tonight is going to be a treat to say the least. “Tonight ‘Three Rooms Press’ presents: May Day 2: Mike Watt + Friends w/ Mike Watt + J Mascis + Murph , Appomattox , Dead Trend and the NYC Launch of Mike Watt: On and Off Bass + very special guests”. How could I not go to this?? Especially since I got the Flu (which I’m still laboring from) at the Melvins/Unsane gig and with no medical insurance took the safe route and made the sacrilegious decision to leave the show midway through-Didn’t even see the Melvins. So All Apologies on my end, that’s something that will not happen again. That’s what made me get these tickets, because I felt I needed to make up for missing the Melvins. What better way then Watt From Pedro? And Le Poisson Rouge no less? At 158 Bleecker Street this is where I saw The Meat Puppets back in November tear the roof off this place. Small venue, and I arrived first on line as usual, about 6 with Doors at 7, Show at 8. Spotted J Mascis outside around 6:30. This night could get interesting..So let’s kick off the 68th Episode of the Jay Porks Never Ending Concert Series, I promise you this is a good one!

Once I nabbed my spot up front I was ready to rock and roll. Last time I was here there was a “Dance Party” scheduled for after the show. I’m not sure what the case is tonight, but they moved quick in setting up and being ready to roll by 8PM. Three Rooms Press put this gig together so there is this woman introducing the bands and hyping up the aforementioned publisher. She thanks us for coming repeated, etc. Anyway, she introduces a band called Dead Tread and 8PM. I would their sound as “kinda punky” if you times what’s in quotations by 11. I saw a 12 song set list and I was pissed. I thought we were in for some 40 minute set. Get this, these dudes may not have even had a song that clocked in at over a minute. The took their shirts off, this dude screamed at us. Songs called “Lunch lady” if my vision serves me right. They played from 8 to 8:17. Twelve songs in 17 minutes then the guitar player who has already broken two strings takes his guitar and slams it on stage. Freaking awesome! Someone screamed “You guys suck!” after the set, and the drummer said “Tell us something we don’t know”.

At 830, Brooklyn’s own, Appomattox hit the stage. Introduced as “Mike Watt’s favorite band from Brooklyn”.. They were a lot more towards the side of traditional rock and roll and weren’t punky at all as Dead Trend was. Their songs had hooks and stuff, and the lead singer was switching off between keyboards and guitar. They played about 25 minutes and the last song they played, “Radiator”, is available to listen to on the web( so they say) they went off at 8:55..

 

There was an interview with Mike Watt before he went on “with friends”..I filmed it, so I figure why write about it when I can show you. There’s some hilarious stuff in this. It’s worth the check out.

Right after the interview, Watt headed towards his bass to start setting up. JM and Murph come on stage and set up quickly. It seems J has found a new bag in which to keep his effects pedals because he usually packs a hefty looking case where this was able to fold up easily when they went off later. Maybe it’s the “Non-Dinosaur Jr” pedal board, he probably has tons. There’s a few things I’ve been wondering since I bought this ticket yesterday: Whose catalog are they going to be dipping into? Would it be more Minutemen stuff, or will they mess around and do some Dino stuff too? Who is singing? Few minutes before 9:30, and those questions were about to be answered.

 

When the lights dimmed and the show got started, the dude who’s gonna kick off the night on vocals was unknown to me, but thanks to comments left by awesome people reading, I now know that was Don Fleming (of Gumball).  The riff was familiar, but I couldn’t hear any lyrics because, I’ve AGAIN made the mistake of place myself an arms distance from JM and his amps, giving my eardrums a beating. This is the kind of pain I enjoy, as I realize it was “Real Cool Time”, a Stooges song! I was floored when they played “TV Eye” next (John Petrovic from Cobra Verse  sang that), because now I get it. We are gonna jam out to Stooges songs all night with Watty’s mean bass plucks and JM basically turning his 6 string into a blow torch that blew the minds of us close enough to be completely taken in by it. I love the original versions, but hearing JM’s take on it was like something you can only imagine. You don’t get these types of shows at the big venues.

Just when I thought things couldn’t get better, here comes out on to the stage none other than Thurston Moore (of Sonic Youth)! Thurston! Seriously!?! Is this “fill the venue with my favorite musicians” night or what? They played “Loose”, another Stooges cover as it was confirmed that this is Stooges tunes all night, and I’m freaking creaming my pants over here third song in.

Steve Shelley, also from Sonic Youth came on stage to drum on “Dirt” next. The vocalist was an unknown to any of us, only reference Mike Watt made to her was “J’s friend”. Come to find out that was Sharon Von Etten  In a night of uncertainty at first, rocking out throughout the evening over everything, was the man who was on Bass, and that’s Watt From Pedro (his twitter is @wattfrompedro ). The bass lines were prevalent everywhere. Every time JM took his foot off a pedal you hear that funky bass riff bouncing all over the place.

When it was time to play “Down on the Street”, Thurston Moore made another appearance. After that, I see this kid come up on stage with lyrics in his hand. It’s Kurt Vile. I’ve heard of him, but never heard his stuff. He held his own on “No Fun”, even though is that really the song you need the lyrics for? That’s barely a critique, just an observation. Did I mention I was rolling film throughout the duration of the evening? Yea, I got the whole set minus about a minute from the encore because my 16 gig Memory Card was apparently full. The encore was Thurston returning to the stage to do an epic version of “Funhouse” , and I saw myself with the rest of the crowd moving towards the exits at 10:26PM.

Set List(Mike Watt was kind enough to Tweet this over):

Real Cool Time with Don Fleming
TV Eye with John Petkovic, John Maloney on Drums
Loose with Thurston Moore, John Maloney on Drums
Dirt with Sharon Van Etten and Steve Shelley
Not Right (watt on vocals) John Maloney on Drums
Down on The Street with Thurston Moore, Murph on Drums
No Fun with Kurt Vile, Murph on Drums
1970 with Noel (former soundman from the Continental on vocals) Steve Shelley
Little Doll (Watt on vocals), Steve Shelley
Fun House with Thurston Moore and John Petkovic on Clarinet
LA Blues – with Byron Coley and John Petkovic w/ Murph & John Maloney on Drums

Jeez, that was so awesome. Like, I wish I could put it to you in a intellectual sort of way but I can’t. Mike Watt, J Mascis, Murph, Thurston Moore, Steve Shelly, Kurt Vile came into Le Poisson Rouge and jammed on Stooges songs on a Wednesday night in New York City. What more could you ask for?

 

Late.

Halloween w/ Ween in NYC!

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.

After “Stroker Ace”, I went four straight songs I either didn’t know the name of or I was just too overwhelmed (in a good way) to remember what the name of the song was. After that “Mollusk”, “Scrap the Mucas off my Brain” and “Push Th’ Little Daisy’s” brought me back to the realm of songs I can sing along too. Another song sneaked in before we got into “Roses are Free”, and they went off stage at 10:47. Wow, an Evening with Ween.. unbelievable.

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

7 Walkers Friday, Sept. 2, 2011 at the City Winery in NYC

The eponymous 7 Walkers album has been in constant rotation in my car stereo this summer (my iPod recently took a suicide dive at the gym, unfortunately for me… and my iPod).  The album has the perfect summertime down-South kind of feel.  Not only does it make me feel like I could be driving down to the bayou in Louisiana instead of the beach in New England, but I find every song to be endlessly interesting.  There’s always something more subtle to notice about a track, or a new lyric that speaks to me. Each song is distinctive enough to appreciate but each contains the same Southern sparkle.

Even in grey downtown NYC last Friday, the 7 Walkers were able to channel that Summertime sunshine.

The cool thing about the City Winery is that it’s a restaurant and bar, too.  I arrived an hour before the show and dined on crispy chicken and grilled cactus (!).

When the band came out, they began with a warmup jam, creating space and mood for their music to flow.  After a few minutes, they sidled into the classic Grateful Dead tune He’s Gone.  Papa Mali and Matt Hubbard, the keyboard/harmonica/trombone/organist, shared some sweet vocal harmonies during the choruses.

Sue from Bogalusa revved up the slower mood by injecting a youthful energy to the show.  It’s a song about lighthearted puppy love that has a distinct Southern twist.  The driving music is a blend of old time rock’n’roll (think: the Twist) and blues.  Rockin’ guitar and harmonica solos totally brought it home.

The next two songs were covers – the bass player, George Porter Jr., belted the Meters’ I Just Kissed My Baby while Papa Mali artfully copied the funkadelic guitar licks.  Despite sitting on tall, uncomfortable bar stools, we all managed to groove pretty hard to that one.  Bob Dylan’s song Positively 4th Street was especially appropriate when performed so close by to the real thing!  This cover was modeled more after Jerry Garcia’s version than the original.

For those of us who were still in our seats, an energetic I Know You Rider did the trick.  The bluesy Southern twist was played up with a slide guitar and thumping piano accompaniment.

The psychadelic rocker Let the Good Times Roll was led by George Porter Jr. again, while he belted out the soulful verses in true Hendrix style.  The song was expanded with a rhythmically complex drum solo from Billy Kreutzmann.

After we got some good old fashioned covers out of the way, the band returned to some of its own material, including King Cotton Blues.  The music ambled through the winery with its own time and its own agenda – delicate jazzy organ licks layered over Papa Mali’s seasoned voice and the bass strove on to drive the piece.  There are some songs that are way better in concert than on the album, and this is one of them.  Everything seems so much more alive.  (How ironic, then, that the song is about execution?) Matt Hubbard left the organ and pulled out a trombone, which he promptly used to blast the circusy outro, which gives a totally different type of sound from the album’s version of the song.  A treat!

During New Orleans Crawl, a soprano sax player joined the band and gave a solo, which was artfully turned into a duo with Matt Hubbard on the trombone.  It was beginning to look like a regular N’Orleans brass band!  After a few verses that showcased some nice vocal harmony, the guitar, bass, keys, and soprano sax traded solos again.  I like the taste of New Orleans jazz world that the 7 Walkers bring to their shows, especially with this song.  It’s on my bucket list to visit the Southern city one day for its jazz (and food – let’s be honest).

The Grateful Dead tune Love Light ended the set on a high, energetic note.  Bluesy harmonica solos interspersed with verses gave it the 7 Walkers touch.

A long, slow-moving and slightly-jazzy organ solo lead into the encore, 7 Walkers.  Papa Mali sang the tune with some true soul – with a little help from Robert Hunter, the lyricist.  Even after all these years, these lyrics prove that he can still spin magic.

Kasabian Set To Return To America With 9/11 Anniversary Concert

Kasabian Set To Return To America With 9/11 Anniversary Concert

On September 11th, Kasabian will perform their first concert on US soil in five years. The band who is set to release their fourth record Velociraptor later this month will perform on a rooftop in New York City to mark the 10 year Anniversary of 9/11. While details have yet to be announced, Kasabian front man Tom Meighan recently told The Sun:

“”It will be strange for us playing in the city on such a big weekend for New York people. It will be emotional.

“I was at work and remember hearing 9/11 unfold on the radio. I remember going home and being in absolute shock. My mum had it on the news. It was f***ing awful.”

 

As of this posting an exact time and location for this gig are unknown. As soon as details are posted, we will have them for you. Kasabian currently have a UK Arena tour booked for later this year and plan to return to the United States in 2012.

 

Update 09/07/11: It appears the gig will be a private show for Mulberry and it will be held on September 12th. Still no information as to how the public can attend the event.

 

PJ Harvey “LIVE @ Terminal 5!” 4/19/11 NYC

What goes on people? Sit down because this one is gonna be fun as the 44th installment takes us to Terminal 5 to see the one and only PJ Harvey.. Terminal 5 is a venue I used to hate but have come to love over the past few visits despite their overpriced tickets and booze.. It’s located 610 West 56th street in NYC.. It’s three floors, the third having video screens showing on stage proceedings, tons of bars everywhere and the “rooftop smoke deck” that I’ve enjoyed on my previous trips here…

Interesting to note that the ‘Bowery Presents’ website had no opening act listed, with doors opening at 7PM and show starting at 8:30PM.. now I don’t mind opening acts, actually they could be fun to write about when they’re good-better when they’re terrible. What I mind is when I’m titillated with the notion that we’re all going to enjoying strictly the sounds of PJ Harvey this evening only to have it snatched away upon arrival with a sheet of paper handwritten set times of several openers. Just don’t lie to us- just list openers TBA and you’ll save us all the anxiety. Now I’m headed out there early just to try and figure out what the deal is. Doors opening at 7, I’m slated to be there, to put it modestly, way before that time. Anyway, as with her music, this evening with PJ Harvey is going to be very interesting. Let’s roll…

I was through through the door right when they opened-figured I’d scope out spots and all that. Looked up and saw people lined up along the railings on the second and third floors-made my way upstairs. The second floor side railing section is VIP, but the third floor. I pulled up a chair and grabbed my self an amazing spot- can’t wait til the lights come on so I could start taking pics of this. And no event staffers in sight on this floor-let’s let the bootlegging begin! And still, no signs of an opening act, as the stage seems set up for only one band. I guess we’ll find out in about an hour and a half…

I didnt buy into the whole “no opening act” thing until about 8:49, when PJ Harvey and her band it the stage.. She’s taken the spot of the stage to the far left- which is directly below where I stand. At times if she backs up the speaker blocks my view of her, but most of the night there she is- in that long white dress looking like Sarah Silverman meets Lady Gaga( it just popped into my head while watching. She was playing this inverted harp thing on some songs, including the one we kicked the night off with: “Let England Shake”. And by the way, if I didn’t get the concept of the record off the several listens I’ve had of it since it came out, the point is driven home now-despair, apathy and hopelessness.

Healthy transition to “The Words that Maketh Murder” and “All and Everyone”, beautifully dark tunes about death-I take a look to the ground floor to see what life down there is looking like. Man it is packed down there, looks like the standing room is also flooding out to the hallway by the merch table. Wish the place was lit up more so the crowds of fans leaning over the second and third floors could be seen in the shot.

Tonight I got drawn into a lot more PJ Harvey songs then I figured I would. I mean, my camera is perched on the ledge, so it’s not very taxing. That left my mind time to drift away into the next few songs like “The Big Guns Call me Back Again” and “Written on the Forehead”. Then a snag in our proceedings, as during the next song “In the Dark Places” while attempting to zoom in on my camera I hit the stop button, thus ruining the perfect game I was pitching with the bootlegging (end up with 20 songs-the event staff over at Town Hall would go ballistic). I remember live-tweeting a pic at that moment because I had both hands free(most of the night was doing that one handed while recording mind you), and prepared for the next one.

The band is sort of in the middle of the stage not really near the front.. John Parish is playing guitar along with keys at times and other assortments, Mick Harvey is on keyboards, and Jean-Marc Butty is drumming. They’re doin’ their thing over there while the presence that Polly Jean Harvey commands on stage is some other worldly stuff (like Patti Smith without crappy poetry-no I kid, love Patti). She doesn’t demand it, doesn’t even seem to do it on purpose-but she’s there in that white dress alone away from the band…in the spotlight belting out such dark lyrics mostly. Next up another day brightener called “The Devil” and people let me tell you that this is freakin’ awesome, I mean she’s like right down there! After our buddy the Reverend Justito tweeted that he’d pay me 3 $2 bills if I was able to spit on her and get it on YouTube. I honestly did survey the angle a bit, but with the speaker overhanging I wasn’t sure if I could hock out a flem gem curve ball-so there goes journalism history tonight.

“The Sky Lit Up” is a great song, and a song called “the Glorious Land” was after that. Some more instant favorites of mine after tonight came 3 in a row, with “The Last Live Rose”, “England” and “The Pocket Knife”. Man I keep looking down,I can’t believe this show(and tomorrow nights) are sold out-I thought there’d be five of us here. It is hot as hell I here. As I sweat like a pig (no Porks pun intended) on the third floor, I wonder what must it feel like to be down there with the only thing to lean on is other sweaty men. Again, it was stuffy, but at least I was surround by girls and had a ledge and shit-blackberry sitting on the ledge live-tweeting because that’s how I roll-as we rolled into “Bitter Branches”, followed by the only PJ Harvey song I have on my iPod believe it or not, “Down By The Water”. What a great song, not to be confused with the Decemberists song by the same name. That was when the night went from awesome to epic-it was house money from there on.

The building continues to rock out to tunes going from “C’mon Billy”, “Hanging in the wire”, “On Battleship Hill” and “The Colour of the Earth” before placing their instruments down and giving bows as the lights turned on.. the place was going nuts as they walked off around 10:15 give or take a few minutes. As the lights shut off and the crowd didn’t pipe down one bit, I kept rolling tape waiting for them to come back out. I timed it at about 4 minutes they were off stage before returning to play us three more tunes: “Big Exit”, “Angelene” and “Silence” before calling it an evening around 10:30..

So many things going right in this adventure we had tonight. Besides the great music, I got myself a good seat PLUS there was no opening act. It was an evening with PJ Harvey. You may look at the set time and think that 1030 is an early time to end a show, but most of her songs aren’t 10 minute ballards, I had a few videos clocking in under three minutes. And anyway this wasn’t bad at all considering a huge part of my decision upon making this purchase was frustration that QOTSA tickets sold out on me in minutes that day-but alas, the amazing PJ Harvey to the rescue as tickets to this show were on sale same day as that QOTSA show. Pretty awesome fall back plan when you think about it.

Oh well, hope we all had ourselves a fun journey-because I sure did. And this will be done and posted way before I’m finished uploading videos to YouTube, as 20 songs takes a while when your internet connection sucks as bad as mine does. Head over to the Jay Porks YouTube Channel to see everything when it’s up

Anyway, quick turn around as this Thursday the 21st one of my favorite bands comes back to town as Local H hits the Mercury Lounge! Pumped for that already, I’ll still be humming PJ Harvey tunes(Full set list below). Well, thanks for participating everyone, and I hope I was able to make you feel like you were there. So until Thursday, I bid you farewell. LATE.

-Let England Shake

-The words that Maketh Murder

-All and Everyone

-The Big Guns call me back again

-Written on the Forehead

-In the dark places…..

-The Devil

-The Sky Lit Up

-The Glorious Land

-The Last Living Rose

-England

-The Pocket Knife

-Bitter Branches

-Down by the Water

-C’mon Billy

-Hanging in the wire

-On Battleship Hill

-The Colour of the Earth

–ENCORE–

-Big Exit

-Angelene

-Silence

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