Tuesday, December 28, 2004

"Lesson Number 1: If the band doesn't destroy their equipment, you don't get to, either."

Rachel Nagy, lead singer of the Detroit Cobras, offered this advice to audience at their show at Cleveland's Beachland Ballroom on Sunday night. Here's another piece of advice. There are some standard questions you can ask yourself to determine if you are an alcoholic, but I've got one more for the list: Have you ever been a one-person mosh pit?  It's never pretty. I've seen it at least twice where is was clearly substance-induced. The woman at the Cobras show was slugging down airline bottles of liquor. A guy at a Chills show in Philly twelve years ago attacked an innocent bystander and knocked out some of his teeth.

Then there was a fixture at Pearl Street in Northampton. He was regularly a one-man mosh pit but appeared to be just oddly enthusiastic and was never dangerous to those around him.

But if you can answer "yes" to "Have you ever been a one-person mosh pit?" then please get help. If not for your own sake, then at least for the sake of your fellow concert-goers and the bands themselves.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

I recently attended my 20 year high school reunion. The event included a DJ with the promise of period-specific music. Some of it was dead-on for the era, such as Duran Duran and Culture Club. But there were some glaring errors, or at least errors that were glaring to me. Frankie Goes to Hollywood's "Relax" and Animotion's "Obsession" may have been released in 1984, the year we graduated, but the songs came out after graduation. "Relax" hit in late summer, "Obsession" the following winter, so I clearly associate them with college, not high school. But I'm probably more of a music geek than everyone else in my class, so no one else may have noticed, not even  when she played the Spring, 1985 Tears for Fears track.

Since no one was dancing anyway, it would have been fun to have a more well-rounded early '80s soundtrack. I love new wave as much as anyone who once sported an asymmetric haircut (although that wasn't until 1985), but Rush, Genesis and Yes were the music of choice for one set of friends. At least she played Crosby, Still, Nash & Young's "Our House" which I strongly associate with high school because one of my classic rock-loving friends took offense at Madness for having the temerity to write a song with the same name.