Long live rock, I need it every night

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Cover Me Badd

Saturday, June, 23, 2007 - The Black Cat $10 Main Stage

Rock Club suffered another week of weak options and weaker attendance from its membership, or for this sentence's sake, its "weakership." Personally, I'm always up for a good cover band (see "As Seen at the 9:30 Club"), so a night of solid rock tunes that I might actually recognize was a decent outcome given the circumstances.

Before I tell you about the show, I have to take a step back and describe the pre-show event. Well before the doors to the Black Cat opened, Mr. and Mrs. Jumbo Slice joined me for 7 innings of beer, peanuts, chex mix, beer, and baseball at RFK Stadium. We watched the local boys play their interleague non-rivals, the Cleveland Indians. Why do I mention this excursion? Well, prior to deciding on the Run For Cover! VI show, the alternative option was to attend yet another slightly tangential RC event. This time - a baseball game.

The tie-in? Well, for starters baseball is American. So is rock. So we've got that going for it. Which is nice. Additionally, the Nats were playing the Indians, which some also consider to be Americans (Indians = Americans; Rock = American ... Indians = Rock?). But in particular, these Indians are from Cleveland, and Cleveland is home to the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame, which I've been to (twice). You follow? Lastly, Major League Baseball, for better or worse, often uses rock music when announcing players as they come up to bat. The connection between Rock and Baseball is well founded, although I must say that the idea for linking RC to the songs that are played as hitters come to bat was not my own. My softball teammate Rosie gets credit for that one, but it's not like I wouldn't have come up with it on my own anyway. As if.

Anyhow, in keeping with the RC spirit, we decided to vote on which player had the best and worst intro song. The winner: local favorite, outfielder, number 19, Ryan Church. Church comes to the plate as Ozzy Osbourne's "Crazy Train" plays over the PA. The worst song went to Cleveland's Josh Barfield (I think) who came out to "U Can't Touch This" by MC Hammer. Boo hiss. So now for the RC Challenge. Which song would you pick to play as you came to the plate? I expect some good responses here. I'm tempted to choose "Super Bon Bon" by Soul Coughing, first because I've got a man-crush for that band, second, because as discovered in Michael Jordan to the MAX, it is an awesome song to have playing when you enter or exit anywhere. (skip to the 54 second / -5:21 minute mark)

But I might actually pick "Love Buzz" from Nirvana's Bleach album. I dig a good bass line. It grabs your attention. Queen proves that to be true with "Another One Bites The Dust." Anyhow, we left the game while the Nats were up 3-1 only to learn that they lost 4-3 by game's end. As far as I was concerned, I saw them win(ning), so that's how it ended for me. On to the Black Cat. We picked up reliable RC stand-in Duh-Cut (see: Murder He Wrote) along the way, and made our way to the show.

For the sixth year in a row, a handful of DC's rock & rollers united for a night of tribute and parody. As usual, makeshift bands took the stage to play other people's tunes. This year's lineup included performances by Abbatite for Destruction, Revelation 88, Serious Moonlight, American Psychos, Don't Fear the Reefer, and more. But the truth be told, I saw only two of the bands perform at this concert. The first was the David Bowie cover band, and they were fantastic. Who cares that "David Bowie" looked more like Robert Palmer than anyone else? Or that he had the lyric sheets in plain view? He did a fantastic job - with the help of the rest of the band - of recreating the Bowie sound. They played for 5 or 6 songs, and all were hits and all sounded great (although wicked loud).

The other band that I actually witnessed was the aforementioned Abbatite for Destruction, the Abba and GnR concoction that was obviously more inventive and difficult to pull off than a straight up cover band. Rock Club's favorite Statehood bassist proved that he really will play with anyone as he donned a blonde wig and white suit to perform with yet another ensemble. He's your basic rock band whore. I heard he sells himself to bands in the Philadelphia area as well. Think twice before you ask him to perform at your wedding. God knows what he might expose you to on your special day. Abbatite for Destruction was comprised of the basic Abba line up, all dressed in Abba white, and speaking with genuine faux Swedish accents. They even assembled the Poang chair while on stage to show off their love of their homeland. The GnR ingredient came courtesy of a fat guy playing his killer axe and wearing a big black wig which loosely resembled the hairstyle of Volkswagen salesman Slash. He was later joined by an Axl Rosé performance artist who reminded me of the guy from Nytro Tokyo for some reason. Maybe because it was at this point in the night that I realized I had been drinking for some 6 hours.

So I spent the rest of the night down in the Red Room enjoying a few Red Room Ales (or as Jumbo Slice likes to call them, "Black Cats"). Meanwhile, I missed the AC/DC cover band upstairs but received the following report from Duh-Cut: " their music was great; the lead singer, however, (no fault of his) didn't sound at all like Bon Scott or Malcolm (?) Young - who both have pretty distinctive voices. I was disappointed they didn't play 'Highway to Hell'."

I also deftly avoided talking to this tall super model-esque young woman while downstairs. She conveniently made her way over and stood right behind me back to back as if to figure out which one of us was taller. Instead of saying hello, I opted to chat up the two femmes at the bar whom I had met the night before at a vegetarian pot luck (don't ask).

Eventually they turned the lights on in the Red Room, Duh-Cut was nowhere to be found, and Jumbo Slice and I stumbled on to the street. I don't think we stopped for any pizza even. And while my memory is fuzzy, I know for a fact that Jumbo Slice hopped into a cab and made his way to NoVa; so keep your insinuations to yourself.

Can you believe these guys have a greatest hits album?


Jimbromski said...

My at-bat music: R. Kelly, Trapped In The Closet, parts 1-12. Might take a while but it would be worth it.

Jumbo Slice said...

That's a hell of a review. While my reviews get shorter and lamer, Potsy continues doing yeoman's work. A few points I'll add:

1. I had a great time both at the game and at the show.

2. My at bat song is "We Built This City" by Starship*.

3. That's a cool video of MJ w/ a perfect soundtrack.

4. I like the Talking Heads band, even though we only caught the end. The Bowie band was definitely the best. "Let's Dance" and "Fame" were awesome, "Hereos" not so much.

5. We drank A LOT. Those Black Cats are tasty.

6. I was a little disappointed w/ ABBAtite for Destruction. It was more mash-up than straight covers. While it's harder to mix songs, I'd prefer they didn't.

7. The chair assembly was outstanding.

* Just kidding. It'd be Romantic Rights by Death From Above 1979. That song rocks.

Potsy said...

I enjoyed your comments, JS. All 7 bullet points, but especially point #2. Also, I forgot about the Talking Heads band. You're right. They were good too. They reminded me of that old SNL where Rich Hall imitates David Byrne and says: "You may ask yourself... 'why such a big suit?' And you may say to yourself, 'couldn't this suit be taken in a little?'"

HA! said...

OK, I have been guilted into leaving a belated comment. First, it is not as cool to have the best at-bat song when you are the one who created the game just to show off but I will not let that get in the way of my awesomeness. Second, I am technologically challenged and cannot link to the song in my comment. However, Zuton Fever, by The Zutons is the at-bat song for me. It's rockin' bass intro plays just long enough for me to approach the plate, amidst thousand of fans brought to their feet by the epic sound. Epic may be a slight overstatement, but my fantasy world has no room for the understated.
If anyone cares enough to hear the song they will have to illegally download it themselves. Do it, it's worth it.