Friday, March 7, 2008

STILL ALIVE & WELL (THOUGH JUST BARELY...)

Posted By on Fri, Mar 7, 2008 at 1:10 PM

You know what really sucks about Blowout? Too many fucking band. That shouldn't be a problem -- but it certainly poses one when there are two and even three bands that you want to see playing at the exact same time. Oh, well, guess that's one of those problems/dilemmas that hurts so good and I suppose the only solution is to flip a coin... or perhaps pick the band you haven't seen yet.

I spent most of last night going back and forth between Small's and Paycheck's Lounge. There was a method to the madness; I was hoping to finally run into my old friend Bootsey X -- and indeed the mission was accomplished at long last. Of course, it didn't require much detective work on my part, as his band Circus Boy (cool name -- but why no Micky Dolenz tunes?; that's an in-joke between us old-timers, kiddies) had the 11 p.m. slot at Paycheck's. Can't figure out, however, why Bootsey didn't end up playing drums with the dudes until the end of their set. Fine stuff, though. They really have that MC5/Stooges age-old Detroit muti-guitar attack sound down pat. Especially dug the cover of the New York Dolls' "Bad Girl." Speaking of bad girls, I also caught some of the Ruiners ' set, since they preceeded Circus Boy onstage. Kinda dug the lead singer's Iggy Lite approach (if Iggy was a lot taller... and not doing Madonna covers these days) -- but the real focal point of the group are the two chicks in front, especially the little red head. Yes, sometimes I can be a dog.

Grayling, meanwhile, down the street at Small's, were genuinely a pleasant surprise. The trio offered a melodic, riff-driven, buzzsaw assault throughout their set...and the crowd ate it up. I left my notes at home (hey, it was struggle enough just to get myself here this morning!) but I especially dug the ominous lyrics that addressed both the Waco and Oklahoma tragedies; think it was something about losing one's soul or something like that. America -- always a great source for ominous lyrics, especially as of late. Also caught the tail end of Great Lake Myth Society's set. The band soared, even with a substitute drummer (see Eve's post below). Beautiful harmonies; great musicianship. If the Eagles had been this awesome once upon a time, the history of folk/country-rock would have been a whole lot different (and a whole lot better). And what better way to close the evening than a nightcap at the Belmont in the company of Matt Smith and his Outrageous Cherry, a band I've known and loved since Del-Fi Records sent me one of their CDs back in the late '90s. Last night I decided Detroit is similar to New Orleans when it comes to musical heritage. People here do it because they need to do it... and what better reason is there?

I'm exhausted. On to round three, though...

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