Archive for October 2014
I love seeing GWAR live. I’ve seen them several times since the 80s and I think they peaked at the Scumdogs album. Nevertheless, I do try to go and see them still. They still crack me up. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Dave Brockie died earlier this year. He was the voice and personality behind the Oderus Urungus, Dave was a funny guy and cool the few times that I met him. I have an interview I did with GWAR in 1999 that I need to get uploaded. It’s hilarious.
The band is now using multiple members as singers and it works with their new storyline of having an epic battle to see who will become the new leader of the band. Included in that mix was my buddy, Brent, who replaced Corey Smoot on lead guitar after his untimely death a few years ago. He’s Pustulus Maximus. I’ve known him for about 10 years from other bands he played with back in Virginia. Awesome dude and it’s always great to see him.
The band hit the stage during the second annual Housecore Horror Film Festival and there was a video message on the “magic mirror” from Oderus. It was all strange, but it worked. He disappears into another dimension or something and all of the new singers bash it out. The show was enjoyable and Brent’s guitar playing was awesome. He sang a song or two as well. Way to go, Pustulus!
It’s always fun watching people get soaked in the pit at their shows. This past Saturday night, I got hit with a blood cannon. Totally unintentional but it made me laugh nonetheless. Good fun all the way around, especially their cover of West End Girls. I also ran into a guy I knew from Virginia that I hadn’t seen since about 2000. He was touring with a guitar company that he works for. I also ran into the VoiVod guys who remembered me from a SxSW show a few years back when I got my head cut open by a stage diver.
This show marked the 6th in a row since Monday night. I was absolutely exhausted by the time it was over.
Throughout the 70s, the Eagles were everywhere. You couldn’t get away from them at all. They were played on the country and rock stations. They made millions. Snorted and drank away millions as well. To say I was a huge fan back then would be a big exaggeration. I’d easily say I like them more now than I did back then. My oldest brother, Mark, was more into country and southern rock than the heavier stuff that Robert and I were in to. In 79 or 80, I remember him bringing home The Long Run LP. Something about that album caught me. It’s easily my favorite by the band and I spun Mark’s copy dozens of times over the years. I Can’t Tell You Why is my favorite Eagles song of all time with King of Hollywood, In The City and Take It To The Limit rounding out the top list. I knew In The City from The Warriors movie which I saw in a drive in theater a year or so prior to this album coming out.
I never saw them live before and when they toured in 94-96 for Hell Freezes Over, I was pretty much disinterested in seeing anything non-metal related.
Then The History Of The Eagles documentary started airing on Showtime. I watched it a good 10 times. I love band documentaries and this is one of the best I’d ever seen. It rekindled my interested in the band and I went back through and started listening to the back catalog again, pre-Long Run as that one is always in rotation with me.
When they announced the “History” tour, I missed getting tickets to the Dallas show and was a bit disappointed until the second leg of the tour got announced and they scheduled a date at the AT&T Center in San Antonio. Sweet! I got tickets a little later in the day that they went on sale and didn’t get good seats at all, but I didn’t care that much; I just wanted to be there. So I got 4 tickets for my friend Gordon, his wife and whatever friend I decided to take. For this show it was Margarita. She’s a good concert companion and lives on the way to the venue.
We get to the venue around 7:15 but it took us almost 40 minutes to just get into the parking lot. It was a pain in the ass but we got in the venue, hit the bathrooms, grabbed a beer and went up to our seats, side stage damn near the top of the venue. I’m not afraid of heights, but these seat locations were a bit up there. One wrong move standing up and losing balance and you could easily roll down some rows over people. I wonder how often it happens during Spurs games there. The seats up there weren’t comfortable in the least. We were right on top of each other with zero leg room. I’ve sat in lower sections there and it’s much better. Lesson learned.
Then the lights go down and there’s Glen Frey on stage with an acoustic guitar. He goes right in Saturday from the first album. Bernie Leadon comes out and sings Train Leave Here Tomorrow Morning and little by little the other remaining members come out…Don Henley, Timothy B Schmidt and Joe Walsh.
They played 12 songs to start with ending that set with Take It To The Limit with Frey on vocals as Randy Meisner is obviously not in the band now. The entire band sounded 100x better than I expected a bunch 65+ year old guys to sound. I was utterly blown away by that. Guitar playing was spot on as well. During the break I decided to grab a tshirt. They had 2 designs that I liked so I bought them both. Expensive but whatever, I love black concert shirts with tour dates on the back. BUT WAIT. Where’s San Antonio on this list? I got back in line to get a refund as SA was not on there. The lady looked through all of the other shirts and couldn’t believe SA wasn’t listed. Then she refunded my cash. Unfortunately during that time, they played I Can’t Tell You Why. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Khaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan! Schmidt sounded incredible; I just wish I had seen it. *sigh* My buddy was working one of the other merch booths and apparently some of the shirts did have SA listed. I think he grabbed one for me.
Best as I could tell, the band didn’t sound tuned down at all to help with the vocals. Even if they were a half step down, it was still impressive. Timothy, Don and Joe all sounded like they hadn’t lost anything. Glen’s voice was a little hoarse when they started and he even mentioned it at the beginning, but he still sounded fine. If there was a high note he knew he couldn’t hit, he just didn’t try. Respectable. But the other guys were nailing the high harmonies.
I never realized how big Joe Walsh’s hands were. I swear they looked like gorilla hands and they just swallowed the guitars he was playing. He’s listed online as 5’10” but looks a lot bigger. They played Pretty Maids All In A Row, In The City, Life’s Been Good and Funk 49 in the 2nd set and it was impressive. First encore was Hotel California and we took the decision that in the 2nd encore (after looking at the setlist online) to leave. They started Take It Easy and we bailed. We missed Rocky Mountain Way (blech!) and Desperado (the reprise was played earlier, so we got a taste of it). It was a good decision. We got out and onto the highway home fast.
Side note: walking in, security staff said no pictures or video allowed and it was announced a few times before the show started. It was nice not staring into everyone’s cellphones all night.
Another great show with great friends.