Sunday, April 10, 2005

Code Blue/Gentleification Now!

TSOL @ CBGB's and The Smittens @ The Delancey 4/1/05
Well the night started off at The Delancey where my friend Colin Clary's indie-pop band The Smittens were doing their thing. I'd only seen them one previous time, back in November 2003 at Luna Lounge, and they've improved tremendously and gotten a lot tighter since then. They're working on a new album that'll be out in June. As for what they sound like, if cutesy, Beat Happening-influenced early '90s indie-rock is your thing, then The Smittens are definitely for you. Think Small Factory, Eggs (they cover one of their songs) or hell, anything from the Simple Machines or Sarah Records rosters and you're pretty much there.

Now, luckily, The Smittens played rather early, giving me an opportunity to catch legendary gothic punk band TSOL, who were playing a rare NYC show (the last time they played here was back in September 2001). Although I almost didn't wanna go because CB's sucks and what not, I reasoned that TSOL doesn't come around too often and since I'd never seen them, I wanted to rectify that situation. TSOL, despite playing a stellar set mostly consisting of material from their 1st ep and their great debut Lp, 1981's Dance with Me, utterly disappointed me by only doing 1 song from the great 2nd Lp, 1982's Beneath the Shadows, and by generally playing their songs faster than they needed to be and concentrating on their faster, thrashier material (as opposed to the moodier, gothic stuff on Beneath the Shadows and its unjustly overlooked follow-up, 1984's Change Today), thus appeasing the small-minded, mostly young hardcore punk kids in the audience who can only appreciate one part of this great band's legacy. A highlight, however, was when they played The Damned's "Politics" and dedicated it to my friend Jack Rabid, who was in the audience. After the show, I briefly got to meet Jack Grisham (TSOL's singer) and heard him tell a funny story about running for California governor in the recall election of 2003 that Arnold Schwarzenegger (sigh) ended up winning.


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