Sunday, November 25, 2007

you say, "can you rock harder?" i said i could, and i explode.

the shooting blanks concert last night was amazing. my ears are ringing from the loud music, my neck is a little sore from thrashing my head around, but i don't care.

the concert was at a place called The Mutiny. i had never been there before, but i'd love to attend more shows there. the place is a grade-a dive bar. the name is painted on the window, but the only thing you can actually see from the street is an old sign with a pabst blue ribbon logo, and the words COLD BEER under it. the taxi driver drove right past the bar when he was taking me there; i just made him stop at fullerton and western, and i walked the half a block back to the bar.

the inside is just as divey as the outside. the bar is in the front, and the music area is in the back. it's dark and smoky, there's one television over the bar, and there's nothing but awful beer on tap (think old style, PBR, that kind of thing). in the music area, there's another bar--but instead of featuring bartenders and drinks, old kegs and other clutter sit forgotten behind it. the stage is just barely raised from the floor. a ramp cuts across the middle of the stage; the back door of the bar sits at the end of the ramp. above the stage, there's a huge hole in the ceiling:

in other words...i felt right at home in this bar, and i'm going to be going to this place a lot once i come back to chicago for good.

so, the bands. sad hannah played first. i listened to them, although i was in the front part of the bar and not the music room since the kansas/mizzou game was still going on. the game ended at about the same time as sad hannah's set did. the bar was small enough so that you can hear the music perfectly even by the television.

their music was forgettable. it wasn't specifically offensive, but it was boring. none of the songs stuck in my head. that was disappointing, since one of the members of sad hannah used to be in ratbag hero. ratbag hero was a chicago punk band that broke up a few years ago. their lyrics were hilarious, their music energetic. they had an energy that sad hannah lacked.

after the fight played second. the football game was over, so i was rocking out in the music room for that one. i wasn't familiar with them before last night. they're fun; i'd gladly go see them again. they played high-energy, fast punk rock. they looked like they really enjoyed being on stage, they had a lot of personality, and they interacted with the crowd well.

here's a picture of after the fight...although, it's less useful to illuminate how good they are than it is useful to show the ratty-basement vibe of the mutiny.

finally, shooting blanks played. i hadn't seen them since 2004...their music is good recorded, but it's a lot more fun live. they're goofy, they're silly, and they have a lot of energy. i didn't think i was ever going to see them again, since they broke up back in march. but, it was the lead singer's fiancee's birthday this week--and she convinced them to play a reunion show. (i should give her a cookie. she deserves it, for being instrumental in bringing the Drunk Punk back to my life, at least for one fleeting moment.)

they played all three of my favourite songs of theirs: "simple song", "ignore me", and "she loves me cuz i rock." the show had the vibe of one big party--albeit a party with much better music than most parties have. the singer and the lead guitarist were the same throughout, but there were a couple different bassists and a couple different drummers. the band was adorably self-deprecating about their performance afterwards, but they shouldn't kid themselves. the music rocked, and the crowd was loving it.

after the show, i hung around for a few minutes just to chat with people. since i've been in st. louis for so long, i've been a little out of touch with the music scene. it was so nice to be back at a chicago punk show again, and i can't wait until i live here and can go regularly again. i always have such a good time at these things...i get so energetic and happy during and after a great show.

finally, just in case you didn't notice it before--hoffman had the shiniest guitar ever. the shape alone is cool. the fluorescent green tape alone is cool. the whole, however, is greater than the sum of its parts. together, they create a guitar force that cannot be stopped.


Anonymous said...

Hey! - It's Hoffman from Shooting Blanks. Just wanted to say thanks again for coming out!!! Awesome pics on this blog site, and thanks for the props on my badass shit-kicking metal guitar. Hope to see you at the next "final" Shooting Blanks show!!!

lawschoolrules said...

shooting blanks headlines shows now? At grade-A dive bars? damn, I have been out of the city way too fucking long.

But those guys are great live (and excellent blog commentators too!). One of these days I will have my friend burn their CDs for me.

Next time, try to get the audio to go with the pictures

nicolle said...

Hoffman--anytime! :D the show was fabulous...and you bet i'll be at the next "final" show. (there had better be a next "final" show, or i'll be sad.)

LSR--they really are awesome, i've seen them several times myself. as for audio...i didn't catch any of the audio of the show. all their music is posted on maybe, if you're super nice and if the band lets me, i'll figure out how to use my digital camera's video capability and catch parts of their next show for you, whenever that may be. :)