Sunday, January 20, 2008

ominous seapods reunion / tp & my bday show, 1/12/08, revolution hall, troy, ny

"i'm not quite sure what happened last night, but i'm wearing a price chopper wrist band."

a few months ago i got a text message from the old tp: i'm planning something for our birthday (1/12). after some detailed phone conversations i was given the low-down. the only problem was that i couldn't tell anyone. so you can imagine how excited i was when the information finally went public- it was a fervor equally if not more explosive than bastille day. the ominous seapods were playing a reunion show and people were PSYCHED!

a little story about the old tp... on 4/4/97 the seapods opened up for moe. at irving plaza- well, it was an awesome show no doubt, but i think the most magical moments might have happened after the music stopped. the giddiness traveled from backstage all the way to downstairs and out the back door during load out. in tp's one hand was a bottle of whiskey. whiskey-tom had had enough to drink, but he wouldn't let go of the bottle (had he stolen this from rob? i can't recall, it all happened so fast.). in his other hand was a plastic container of humus that had somehow or another gotten a crack in the top. for some reason i ended up as the person who wrestled the bottle out of teep's grasp and presented it to rob derhak [1) rob can always use some more whiskey, and 2) now he would love me forever, right?]. i'm not sure if it was because of this treasonous behavior that tp became even more belligerent, but it seemed as if the layers of the entire night's events had made him more philosophical in a split-second. because an angry tp started waving his arms around in disgust and as he did this, with every exaggerated movement, humus went flying everywhere, splattering new york city- on the sidewalk, the walls of the building, the box truck, the gear, the vans. and then in an instant the stormy ocean became calm- and tom told me, "guppy... if this humus were a cookie... and that cookie were life... you'd have only eaten 1/3 of that cookie." wow, it's all so clear now. glad i got the whiskey out of his hands, eh? he was then herded into the van and driven off into the sunrise. well, not quite- shortly thereafter at a stoplight in union sq., tom jumped out of the van's front passenger seat, started screaming "FUCK YOU!!!! FUCK YOU!!!!" at the surprised couple in the adjacent car and i believe it was ted who jumped out of the back of the van, grabbed teep by his shirt, and THREW him into the backseat.

so long ago, professor tom spoke his wisdom, and yet it seems like only yesterday. how fast the years, the humus, the cookie pass/get devoured. and yet our friendship remains. i want to thank tp once again for organizing this concert- it was the best fucking birthday party ever, and i'm so glad we were able to celebrate together, all the bands that played, and all the mutants who crawled out of the woodwork for it. i especially want to thank teddy marotta- because i would have "coped" without him, but i'm really glad and deeply appreciative that he picked up some drumsticks and went to town on some old tunes. he said he couldn't stay away. well, ted- to that i have to say: fuck yeah, motherfucker.

about 10 of us arrived in troy at the same time (bach was already there, but: kat, jack, sara, gullo, hern, lisa, dana), so we congregated in the hotel and by the time we got to brown's brewing company, there was a 1 1/2 hour wait for a table. so we said hello to some folks who were eating there (bourbon, mojo mark, gabe, g3, drew price!) and went next door to the mexican/irish fusion place called "jose malone's" and by the luck of the irish i had a couple of frozen margaritas to start the party off right! dinner was pretty good- empanadas and enough food to create a reasonable base for the drinking ahead of me (i would definitely eat/drink there again- see: pre-show frozen margaritas). it was here we ran into lo (again), eggar, dana (again) and --- HOLY SHIT, TED!!!!! omg, what an amazing surprise- originally he had decided not to perform. i asked him if he was there to play and he said he couldn't stay away- well, that just about made me the happiest girl in the world. oh, and lowell showed up! woooo!!!! when we finished we found ourselves standing on line at rev hall in the cold. the excitement (and alcohol) warmed us up. immediately i ran into caroline from vermont which is nuts cuz i haven't seen her in forever. after i passed through the line i remembered i had to buy a ticket for lento who was driving from ithaca- so i had to go outside and wait online a 2nd time, which initially i was pissed about but the moment i stepped outside i saw deb, maria, and BIG MAMA SEAPOD!!!! SWEET! left tommy's name at the door, walked in and jake waddy is standing in front of me with some plattsburgh peeps! and reg & kathi, jonnycat... and MAX!!!!!!!! holy shit--- it's finally happening! it wasn't just any old concert, this was a reunion show- and people had traveled from all over the country to be there- random people no one has seen since the seapods had disbanded. everywhere you looked you saw someone you knew and everyone was smiling. i was a little sad cuz i missed the pre-show gathering tp had cuz we were eating dinner- but he served humus and cookies (you think i was ever gonna let him forget that?).

the lineup: raisinhead, attack theater, lo faber band, ominous seapods. we came in while raisinhead was playing and the place was already packed. i'll be honest with you, i didn't really get to pay a lot of attention to raisinhead, but i could tell you they sounded awesome as usual. i saw some more plattsburgh people, kim, happy lopez, pat, live music beth (!), some more people, i don't remember who else. oh yeah, lento showed up! i went to the bar and got vodka. when in doubt... attack theater played and were awesome, people were digging it and they didn't even have the balance beam or slide set up, which would have taken up way too much room, btw. again, i don't remember many details from this time frame other than people i was running into. oh holy fuck, and YEAH--- SIDESHOW BOB KELLY!!!!! he stopped by the restaurant earlier, but wow was it awesome to see him! it's been at least 10 years? i have memories of him with long hair dancing on stage and spanking his own ass while max and dana ran around in masks at club toast in burlington- oh so long ago- and now-- he looks like a fine upstanding citizen! except that he was wearing his old ominous seapods 'tour manager' jacket, so scratch that upstanding citizen line. but sideshow bob!!!! awesome!

the lo faber band hit the stage (w/ kirk juhas on keyboards- another awesome addition- and made me think, "damn, i miss freebeerandchicken") so i moved up front and ran right into steve bond and nick sullivan--- another wtf? and lo and friends rocked a ton of god street wine songs including hellfire, nightingale, goodnight gretchen, get on the train, epiphany, some others i don't remember (didn't keep a setlist and can't seem to find one online- maybe borderline too?) and a neil young cover- "after the gold rush". what's important is the crowd went WILD for it- the band was on fire, everyone was enjoying themselves, dancing and singing along! it was insanity! and it was brilliant! and i could have used another set!!! lo needs to finish his PhD and get back to playing music. enough of this princeton hoo-ha.

so we enjoyed our 10 minute setbreak and actually, i needed to pee, so i missed greg bell's introduction of the seapods and the start of jump 4 joy, but it was a great soundtrack for the bathroom. big mama was talking to some girls in the bathroom line and as she ran out the door she says, "tell them who i am, lynnguppy." so i smiled and said, "that's big mama seapod." it was cute. aww. anyways, i made my way out of the bathroom and eventually back to the stage- the floor was PACKED- but our running crew had secured space up front, awesome... and well, we rocked the fuck out for 3 hours. mike wren and some others were videotaping the show for teep and possibly a future dvd- there were 4 cameras, i volunteered to shoot for a little while but my services came with the "i'm drunk, i wanna dance, and don't want lose my space up front" disclaimer. i think i did ok... HAHAHA. ooh. bourbon was yelling at me for doing work on my birthday... i was happy when wren took the camera back.

everyone was rocking, but i have to tell you, for the first 10 minutes of the show--- all i could do was watch max. i haven't seen max play in forever. i missed the gathering of the vibes teaser reunion in 2005 because i couldn't get out of work. i missed max so much that i almost forgot why i missed max so much. his sound is so original, his leads are melodic, and his style of guitar playing harmonizes and mimics his singing voice in a sweet unusual way. it's smooth and flows freely creating the perfect compliment to dana's wah-wah rhythmic playing. the marriage of sounds it creates solely belong to the seapods of yesteryear. when max left the band, their music changed, and while todd was a creative force and incredible player (and he kept the seapods going) as well, it was a different style than max's- so i had really gotten used to hearing that sound as the "seapods". sure, i listen to old shows all the time, but for some reason it didn't hit me til i saw it in front of my face. being at a show with max was refreshing, surprising, familiar. marty and bob were up front with me groovin' out for a while and marty said, "THIS is the show we've all been waiting for." and it was. i felt 18 again.

the band had 2 drum kits set up and a percussion set, ted stayed on his set all night except for when sam came on for "that's how they got along" (never been one of my favorite songs, but this time i didn't mind it so much)- the guests rotated around the other kits. chad ploss, sam brewton, and vinnie amico were guest drummers, chad and todd left the stage for a while so it was just the oldskool seapods rockin' out for a bit, then he came back on, dave eggar joined the fun for a while on cello, lo came on for the tp medley...

meanwhile, tp, the man of the night, played ALL frickin night, and was going strong through the seapods set with a giant smile on his face. the dark horse layed down the scifi grooves. tigerbeat was totally awesome. :) and dana effin' monteith--- monty roberts himself- was absolutely nuts! i'm so used to dana doing truckstop music--- and it was so awesome to see him jumping around as his rockstar self singing donnie osmond!!! fucking awesome!!!

i'm trying to think of highlights, but they pretty much all were highlights. hearing max sing on j4j made me emotional, i thought i might cry out of joy... somedays (i remember when that was called "new max"), monopole really hit me, k.i.m. one of my favorites. dana was fucking awesome on guide to roadside ecology and da bomb. ADIRONDACK BLUE!!!! holy crap that sounded so good in my ears!!! bong hits with eggar, old gp--- i think bob got super excited when he heard that, and anything's possible!!!!! teep on FIRE! "LET TOM SING!!!" i screamed!!!! blackberry brandy!!!! it felt so good!!!! branch's house with lo, jet smooth ride and donnie osmond- dana laying that shit down! and they closed the show with blister in the sun, which i thought was kind of a meh move-- i would have rather seen mr. blood- but i can dig it. i won't hold it against them. especially if they do this again next year (or 5 years... just sometime.).

the crowd was singing along and dancing to all the songs--- for realz. there were just smiles and happiness ALL around. it was a good old mutated love fest!!! after the show people stuck around and were just talking, smiling, laughing. fuck, it was sooo awesome! we ended up trekking back to the hotel and there was a jam session in our room- bach, bourbon, and mojo mark played a combo of guitars, banjo, and mandolin. hopefully the neighbors didn't mind so much. i ate a newfangled oreo trying to be a whoopie-pie (wasn't bad). and we crashed a little after 5am.

7 of us (it's an impressive number and we got a table almost immediately) had brunch sunday at the cafe madison. i had intentions of getting the spiced oatmeal raspberry pancakes, but once again the specials page got the best of me, and i had the cinnamon bread french toast stuffed with cranberry orange cream stuff. IT WAS SO FUCKING GOOD. the g3's got basic b'fasts i think, but gabe got his with irish soda bread- that ain't so basic! i can't remember what anyone else got except for lento who got the special that we've officially renamed d-mighty's newborn son after, "curry benedict babitz". it's got a nice ring to it, don't you think?

do i even need to say it? ominous seapods reunion / lo faber band / attack theater / raisinhead, 1/12/08, revolution hall--- tp's (and my) bday bash: 10 fucking HUZZAHS! i'm pretty sure this was the best birthday EVER!!!!! thank you so much tom--- stellar job. you're my hero. i also want to thank all my friends and fellow mutants who traveled the distance to party the fuck out and make the night so special, it was uplifting to say the least. what a great time!

and here's the photo album slideshow and gallery link where you can download hi-res versions.

Revolution Hall
Troy, NY

Max Verna (guitar/voclals)
Dana Monteith (guitar/vocals)
Tom Pirozzi (bass/vocals)
Brian Mangini (keyboards)
Ted Marotta (drums)
Todd Pasternack (guitar/vocals)
Chad Ploss (drums)

Jump For Joy
Leaving the Monopole* >
The Guide to Roadside Ecology* >
Michael Murphy 3*
That's How They Got Along**
Keep In Mind***
Waiting 4 Da Bomb 2 Drop**** >
The Pull From Adirondack Blue****
Money To Burn^
The Old G.P.
Bong Hits and Porn^^
Anything Is Possible >
Ship^^^ >
Anything Is Possible
Blackberry Brandy

Branch's House^^^^
Jet Smooth Ride
Hey Donnie Osmond >
Blister In the Sun

*without Todd or Chad
**with Sam Brewton, without Ted,Todd or Chad
***Max and Ted only at beginning, before full band joins in
****with Vinnie Amico (from moe.) on drums, without Chad
^without Max
^^with Vinnie Amico on congas and Dave Eggar (cello)
^^^Tom on guitar and lead vocals, Dana on bass
^^^^with Lo Faber on guitar, Dana on acoustic
with Dave Majecka on congas

the show doesn't seem to be up on yet, but there were definitely people taping- i'll keep looking and post it when it goes up.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

the new hampshire primary was brought to you by the letter 'E'.

on tuesday night new hampshire lived free and voted for the 3 e's: experience, estrogen, and evolution. while polls leading up to the primary election led pundits to believe (or at least report in the media) obama would walk away with another victory following his success in iowa, the clinton campaign pulled off a shocker (no, not that kind).

at the debate on saturday, hillary clinton got riled up! first after obama and edwards (who quickly alligned himself with obama, buddy-buddy) started talking about "change" she spanked 'em with "change" and how she's "not running on a promise of change, she's running on 35 years of change". then she responded to a blunt question of "what can you say to the new hampshire voters who seem to like barack obama more than you?" now, with actual hu-man emotions-- this crap couldn't have been scripted- she said genuinely, "well, that hurts my feelings" *DING DING DING DING DING* oooh, omg, TOTALLY more likable-- and the women went wild! well, the next day she went for it! ol' hill-dog got emotional and teary and discussed the pressures of the campaign trail and wanting to do good for her country--- this campaign is personal! she has to eat pizza and can't exercise because she's too busy! wow, hill, are you saying you're just like every working woman out there in america? HOLY CRAP-- YOU ARE GOOOOD!!!! BALLS OUT-BLAZE OF GLORY!!!!

and-- it WORKED! against all polls, election results came in on tuesday night and hillary actually beat barack obama! i have never in my life cried to get out of a traffic violation and/or speeding ticket--- and hillary cried and WON NEW HAMPSHIRE!!! i don't know whether to feel pissed or amazed... you know what? i think i'm amazed... ASTOUNDED even. i might have even learned something today... wow. just, wow, hill. of course then barack came out and made a fucking amazing concession speech which included a jab at republicans using 9/11 to scare up some votes for themselves. damn, he's an amazing speaker! and hillary came out and made an okay speech (i'm quickly becoming aware that no one can follow obama with a speech without it feeling anticlimactic-- maybe bill clinton?) where she declared over the past couple of days she had "found her voice" (aka "oh, that's what you want?"). and reporters on every tv station sat there with jaws dropped open at what had just happened and how their polls were all wrong. women voters chose hillary clinton over barack obama and had won her the new hampshire primary! GIRL POWER! damn, i bet they're sorry they gave us the right to vote now (note to self- keep eyes on george w. bush to make sure he doesn't take away women's right to vote)! on a side note, right before her victory speech msnbc's hillary correspondant declared, "people want talk, not action" twice before correcting himself, "that is action-- people want action, not talk." freudian slip maybe? hmm.

on the other side of the barbed wire high voltage security fence (STAY ON YOUR SIDE!)- new hampshire's republicans (and many independents) chose john mccain with his experience, war medals, and belief in science as the republican winner of the primary. was he the least of all evils? is it a coincidence that the man with the most experience and one that believes in evolution happened to beat southern wunderkind mike huckabee? did huckabee, a believer in creationism really expect to show up in new england (THAT IS NORTH AND EAST for you U.S. american schooled kids in our nation without maps and such) and win votes? not so fast, huckabee. up here in the northeast, we love monkeys! they're adorable, funny, and the reason they remind us of little humans is because--- well, we're related to them. so, don't you go insulting our monkey-brothers on the northeast's watch. or maybe god just didn't want you to win. ever think about THAT? or does it BURN too much, huckabee? in new hampshire you finished behind a mormon (but still ahead of rudy giuliani).

cool interactive map of the results

hill-dog gets riled:

hill-dog gets genuine:

hill-dog pulls out the tears and then she finds her voice!

obama jabs the republicans:

mccain believes in evolution (afterwards he adds that after hiking the grand canyon he has no doubt that the hand of god is also at work-- careful not to insult the religious right he's been pandering to for the past few years):

Monday, January 7, 2008

moe., 12/30/07, irving plaza, nyc, ny

dudes, was i fucking psyched for this show. i saw last year's 12/30 show as well and it was spectacular and so much fun and intimate and had an old skool vibe that i really really appreciated---- so i was sooooo fucking psyched for this show. i don't hit nye shows anymore after the flyers skate zone debacle, but the night before is all i need. it was icing and generally shitty outside but i met up with mr. scrappy macjew on the line and HE happened to get in line right next to jlo, so that was pretty awesome. after we got inside we had to wait in the coat check line for like 20 minutes but it's okay cuz there was a 1/2 barrel of free apples for people to enjoy... ? ... we saw one brave (stupid?) girl eating an apple and decided if she was okay in 2 hours then the apples were fine. we didn't see her again. jlo saw something shiny and ran off and tommy and i went to wait on the line to get our drinking bracelets.

when we finally made it up the stairs there was possibly the smallest security chick on staff wrestling a drunk and sweaty wookie who was screaming and flailing wildly before he threw his stinky knit hat up in the air and it flew directly into the garbage can and the wook ran yelling towards the packed floor. the security girl ran after him not willing to relent and tommy and i looked at each other and laughed as we heard the crowd erupt at the spectacle. we went upstairs to try and find a good view. about 3 seconds before i edged my way into an open spot at the balcony, some big drunk guy got there- so we moved on. we ended up on the floor in the back on the right, it wasn't great... once moe. got on some asshole literally pushed in and stood right in front of us and we both said out loud, "oh hey, wow, you're an asshole, look at that." so we decided to move. that was the best thing that could have happened to us (thanks, asshole!), cuz we ended up moving around and finding an awesome spot chuck side on the floor right in the front, maybe 15 feet from the stage? perfect view and a somewhat chill crowd around us, which was nice.

the band was pretty fun, they haven't been on tour steadily for about two months and i'm not quite sure how many rehearsals they had for this, or if this was the rehearsal for nye, because all night long they were fucking up. not just lyrics. not just chuck and lyrics. not just rob mumbling lyrics he couldn't remember. even al forgot stuff. ! but the band was actually missing cues, forgetting where verses go, where pauses in the music go, etc. etc. it was hysterically messy. it added to the old skool intimate vibe of the show which was absolutely brilliant. memories of being in an empty bar and screaming at the band that they suck and you want your money back kind of fun. of course we still do it, but it's times like these we remember why we started doing it in the first place.

somp was great, sensory deprivation was a nice touch- rob TOTALLY mumbling his way through this, to the point of laughter, timmy was awesome-- great crowd sing along. timmy ended and since i was right near the stairs i BOLTED for the bathroom and got inside and the last empty stall before a line formed. AWESOME. when i got back out of there there was a huge line and a security person letting people in as people left. GOOD TIMING!

nice treat for the 2nd set, they were setting up an extra guitar but i couldn't really see what was going on cuz some tall drunk people kind of got in front of us that we were able to scoot around for the most part and get our view back. but anyways- they broke into opium and we heard some slide guitar and the lights went up and holy fuck it's dickey betts sitting in! so, dickey betts is up there playing right between chuck and rob, right in front of us, and you can tell they are trying to teach him the song and the changes as he's playing- so just watching the guys kind of school him was really cool, just REALLY cool. and you know, seeing dickey betts sit in with moe. was just really cool. and then after a couple of songs he walked off stage and even chuck said, "wow, that was really cool."... then chuck mused about how irving is supposedly the "fillmore east" now and that dickey played the original fillmore a zillion years ago and he was just kind of lost in the moment, but i can dig it, yo. and of course he came back out for mexico, which was also very cool and added a fun element to the song.

right before the encore they did their announcements and i'm getting a little sick of this crap- people announcing show numbers blah blah blah, enough already- say happy birthday to some folks and let's go! rob started making up announcements (DREAMY) and i screamed "SHUT UP AND PLAY!" and al had one more birthday- matt campbell from camp get.down- that i'll say is okay, because not only is it a bday but it's also matt and i met him this summer and he's totally cool- so happy birthday matt (sorry i didn't run into you at the show). now get to the fucking music!

encore was a lot of fun, i was hoping to hear rebubula again cuz last year it was just over the top and blew me away with the whole room singing along and i couldn't stop smiling cuz that song just warms my soul... but you can't get it all the time, and i always hear buster (right eric?) so the spaz>buster>spaz worked just fine- cuz the band rocked out til 1am, and it was fucking awesome all the way.

i tried to start a few chuck chants but no one on chuck side joined in, wtf is that about? CHUCK CHUCK CHUCK!

so, moe., 12/30/07, irving plaza- 9 HUZZAHS! fucking awesome! i'd be psyched to see some more highline shows this spring, but the palace should be fun too. i wanted to go see hot day at the zoo afterwards at the parkside lounge, but it was shitty outside and it was really late, and the parkside lounge isn't walking distance from irving, so instead i got some diner and went home and still managed to get to sleep at 4:30am. loughrey called me from the train station in hoboken to say he wasn't going to the hdatz gig (ha!). and scrappy... poor scrappy misnavigated the subway and missed the "last" train, so he had to wait til 4:20 to hop on the next one and got home at 5:50am... ooooooh. rough. MUST catch hot day at the zoo next time they are in town! i've been waiting to see them again since last march. ACK.

show for download or streaming:

Set I: Stranger Than Fiction, Runaway Overlude, Captain America> Seat Of My Pants> Sensory Deprivation Bank> Timmy Tucker
Set II: Opium*> In Memory Of Elizabeth Reed*, St. Augustine*, Where Does the Time Go?> Mexico*
Encore: Spaz Medicine> Buster> Spaz Medicine

* w/ Dickey Betts

on the road to change... tales from a political junkie fallen off the wagon. vol. 1

for the past 7 years i had to turn away as the politics became so increasingly corrupt and disgusting to me that any time george w. bush was talking bile would actually sneak up into my mouth and nausea would take over my system. now that the bush reign will finally come to an end, i find myself once again off the wagon and back on the political junkie high.

watched the debates on saturday and it went something like this:
republican half made me mad and angry and wanting to shake stupid people. i cannot express my rage right now. perhaps in time it will flow articulately. i just kept thinking, "the rich people don't GET it." most of these dicknoses are so out of touch with society it's scary.

democrat half made me desperately optimistic and sad and lonely all at once. was wondering where we'd be if al gore was president for the past 8 years. then had a friend politely remind me al gore was elected. then i cursed jeb bush and his whole family of crooked thieves and got mad and angry again in time for the last question of the night which was "what would you take back if you could take back something you've said?" hillary answered like a politician and didn't answer, richardson and edwards were funny and honest, and barack agreed with hillary.

i'm particularly enjoying the new contest by the democratic candidates as to who's campaigns and policies are "most personal" to THEMSELVES.

on the road to change, indeed.

barack fascinates me and he is an amazing public speaker- he fills me with hope. he is perhaps the african-american bill clinton (without all the adultery--- so far... please please please). hillary. i wish i could believe in her. i want to think she could implement universal healthcare but she didn't the first time around. and she didn't divorce her husband after the numerous times he's boned randoms, so i really have very little respect for that (arrangement or none). i think that would have done wonders for her public image especially amongst women. she needs to let loose in a blaze of glory. networks were saying edwards did so well cuz he went for a run on saturday afternoon. i like his stance on lobbyists and sticking it to the man. i think he'll be a great running mate for barack.

oh yeah, i almost forgot-- where the fuck was dennis kucinich? oh that's right- abc EXCLUDED HIM from the debate. so- ron paul was up there for the republican round, but kucinich ended up on pbs with bill moyers. interesting.

more to come...

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

ween, 11/30/07, terminal 5, nyc, ny

this show is a great example of what happens when a band rocks the shit out of a horrible fucking venue.

terminal 5 is a new venue that just opened up in nyc. i always have high hopes for new venues in the city- especially since so many rock clubs have shut down in the past 10 years. you would think that they would take knowledge from previous venues and apply it towards their design and function. when the highline ballroom opened up i was psyched- and then i went to see some shows there and was blown away at how great the place is: you can see the stage from pretty much anywhere, the sound is great, the staff is friendly, and the bathrooms are totally clean. so i was hoping that terminal 5 would be in the same vein. so, starting off optimistic- and let's just go from there.

terminal 5 is in hell's kitchen and right around the corner from a chill bar i like called fusion- this alone got me psyched- any time i can pre-game a show with a proper cocktail (the pre-ween cocktail was a mojito) at a bar that mixes properly is pretty awesome. so, heinz and i met up for some pre-gaming, and somehow this old guy at the bar started talking to me about the dude that went into hillary clinton's NH campaign headquarters (it happened that day) and threatened to blow the place up (though, i believe he was only wearing hot-dogs strapped to his chest or something), this conversation led into a global discussion of where politics in america/the world are going and whether or not this was a sign of things to come. see? right there, mojito, political/global discussions, all good. but then we had to take off for the show, cuz it was 7:30ish and the show started at 8pm, so we did want to get there with some time to spare for waiting in line.

terminal 5 is located right next to the west side highway. do you want to know how i know it's right next to the west side highway? because 45 minutes after the doors were supposedly open, the line to get into the show stretched from in front of the venue, all the way down the block TO the west side highway, and then back to the venue. and heinz and i had the pleasure of waiting on that line for about an HOUR in the fucking cold waiting to get inside. and the security guard confiscated an advil (only 1) i had in my bag. OOOH, the DANGER! so we finally get inside in the middle of 'voodoo lady', the merch guy said we missed about 30 minutes of the show (FUCK YOU TERMINAL 5--- ALREADY) and now we had to figure out where to settle in- there are 3 floors in this place, the ceilings are massive, it has the potential to be great.

however, the floor is a clusterfuck of people (ran into steve the greek!), the bar was packed, and the sound was pretty horrible down there. up we went to the 2nd floor. it is nice to have options. we went up the stairs, popped out on the 2nd floor, and it was packed too- but there's a bar to the side we went to and got served almost immediately. while we were standing there we quickly realized that the floors were level all the way to the edge- meaning- there is no step-down/stadium kind of thing happening--- meaning- you can't fucking see the stage unless you're in the first row of people standing against the balcony. are you KIDDING me? not only that, but we're standing there at the bar and i remarked, "why don't they even have tv monitors with the show on them so we can at least see what's happening on stage while we're at the bar?" the guy next to me goes, "YEAH!!!" and turns around- and it's my buddy zach! ha! no shit! so we're all standing there kind of dumbfounded as to who designed this place and we're only on the 2nd floor.

so, heinz and i go up to floor 3 to see if there's any place to see the stage from there. and it was crowded, and people lined the entire edge of the balcony- so the answer was: NO. there was NO place to see the stage from the 3rd floor either. who the hell designed this shithole? if you're not in the first row of people against the edge of the balcony, you're staring at the back of people's heads all night. and it gets worse once you're up on the 3rd floor because it's such an extreme angle to the stage. it's an OUTRAGE!!! if you've ever been to the 930 club in washington dc, you'll know why i'm so pissed off. because that place is fucking awesome- 360' views from the balcony, which is set up with wide steps downward for sitting and standing on, so you can ALWAYS see over the person's head in front of you. why couldn't the terminal 5 people have done a little research to see what works best?

terminal 5 floorplan

terminal 5 improved

the 930 club in dc

2 last venue notes before i get to the music. the bathrooms were totally weird- they were behind the stage on each level, they were unisex stalls, each stall had it's own sink in it, and there was an "attendant" shouting "NEXT" at the line of people waiting. there was also a basket for tips. let me make this clear: if there is piss on the seat when i get into a stall, you're not getting a tip, buddy. also, there was a latino "little person" security guy busting people for smoking weed all over the place and it was fucking surreal and funny as hell. he totally had a keen nose for it because every few minutes you'd see him running in any which direction to find the source of the scent. i couldn't help but laugh because for real--- you're lighting up and fucking tattoo comes running up to you and screams at you to put it out? how is that not funny? omg it was UNREAL. that'll fuck you up.

eventually the people we were standing behind left and we got to the front edge of the 3rd floor balcony, so we had about 45 minutes of a great view and that was awesome. but struggling to get there was complete and total bullshit.

okay, terminal 5 sucks balls. it looks like a venue in some sort of neo-futuristic video game. horizontal and vertical thunderdomey weirdness.

now, the music! ween were fucking AWESOME! rehab stint now over, the boys were fully energized, tight, and seemed to have & deliver their music at full clarity. i haven't seen them since a roseland show in 2003 and i'm not sure if it was my imagination, but they seemed to have more of said clarity this time around.

they played for about 3 hours, no set break, and of course heinz and i walked in during 'voodoo lady', so we still got a pretty full show! the setlist ranged from 'mr. richard smoker' to 'even if you don't', the catchy 'ocean man' (my 9 year old cousin loves this one, it was on the spongebob squarepants soundtrack- so picture the look on his face when i played him the original rock version, he was amazed!) and what's a ween show without a pirate drinking song? so 'blarney stone' capped off the night right after an amazing sing along of 'booze me up and get me high' (take that "little person" NARC!). love ween, psyched they are back on tour, can't wait to see them again.

the band was tight, the show was awesome, ween fucking rocked. i'm gonna do a first and grade the music and the venue completely separate this time.
terminal 5: 1.5 maaaaybe 2 huz-zahs. after being there a short time the only thing i was excited about was the fact that i didn't buy cake tickets for the 'unlimited sunshine' tour that stopped through there. i hope most bands i want to see continue to play at the hammerstein instead of being smokescreened by this linear nightmare of a club. i don't look forward to having to go there again, so hopefully i won't have to.

setlist courtesy of the ween forum:
Exactly where I'm at
She wanted to leave
Golden eel
Baby bitch
Piss up rope
Voodoo lady
Your party
Light me up
Waving my dick in wind
Touch my Tooter
Even if you don't
Beacon light
Mr Richard smoker
Johnny on the spot
Stallion pt. 4
Puerto Rican Power
You fucked up
Tender situation
Pandy Fackler
Put the hammer down
Ocean man

Strap On That Jammy Pac
Booze me up & get me high
Blarney stone