Saturday, May 31, 2014

2014 Punk Rock Bowling Compilation

01 Dead Kennedys - Viva Las Vegas
02 Angelic Upstarts - I'm An Upstart
03 Anti-Nowhere League - We Are the League
04 Cock Sparrer - Last Orders
05 One Way System - Jerusalem
06 Peter and the Test Tube Babies - Maniac
07 The Adicts - Let's Go
08 Church of Confidence - (Whatever Happened To) West Berlin
09 SNFU - She's Not on the Menu
10 Face to Face - You've Done Nothing
11 H2O - Guilty by Association
12 NOFX - Don't Call Me White
13 The Forgotten - Nothing To Lose
14 Against Me! - Drinking with the Jocks
15 CJ Ramone - What We Gonna Do Now?
16 Devils Brigade - I'm Movin Through
17 Good Riddance - Darkest Days
18 Masked Intruder - Stick 'em Up
19 Night Birds - Born to Die in Suburbia
20 Off With Their Heads - Janie
21 The Briefs - New Shoes
22 The Generators - Summer of Unrest
23 Western Addiction - Mailer, Meet Jim
24 OFF! - Red White and Black
25 Cro-Mags - Street Justice
26 Descendents - I'm Not a Loser
27 ALL - Carnage
28 Final Conflict - What Kind of Future?
29 Freeze - Broken Bones
30 Gang Green - Let's Drink Some Beer
31 Naked Raygun - Only in America
32 Poison Idea - Lifestyles
33 Stalag 13 - The Choice Is Yours
34 The GRIM - Old Enough
35 The Meatmen - Dinosaur
36 Noi!se - The Bottom Rungs
37 Youth Brigade - Where Are All the Old Man Bars

2014 Punk Rock Bowling Wrap Up

Here is my ranking for the weekend based on the bands that I watched most or all of their set.

1 Descendents
2 Angelic Upstarts
3 Cock Sparrer
4 The Adicts
5 Peter & the Test Tube Babies
6 Naked Raygun
7 Anti-Nowhere League
8 OFF!
9 Masked Intruder
11 CJ Ramone
12 Night Birds
13 Good Riddance
14 Generators
16 Church of Confidence
17 Devils Brigade
18 Radkey

SNFU was the biggest disappointment for me of the weekend. Even more so than missing ALL, the Meatmen, and the Cock Sparrer club show because I am too fat and couldn't stand on my feet anymore.

Biggest surprise was CJ Ramone joining Naked Raygun to sing "Bonzo Goes to Bitburg."

I must admit, I purposefully did not watch the following bands during the festival.

Black Market Syndicate
Lost in Society
La Plebe
The Dwarves
Rats in the Wall
Bad Cop / Bad Cop
Cerebral Ballzy
Leftover Crack
Face to Face (only caught the last half of the set)
Against Me (only caught last 3-4 songs)

There are more pics on my Flickr album here for 2014 Punk Rock Bowling.

Videos to be posted soon.

2014-05-26 Punk Rock Bowling

Day 4 - Monday, May 26, 2014

Instead of going to the pool party to watch The Dogs and The Pool Boys (members of lots of PRB bands doing cover songs), we stopped by Claim Jumper for some lunch for the last time.  While sitting there, we noticed the guitar player from the Adicts at a table across from us.  More members of their entourage and band would show up later.  Earthdog also saw Stephen Egerton from the Descendents/ALL running down the hall with guitar in hand most likely heading to the pool party.

This would be the hottest day of the festival with temps topping 102°, but it was a dry heat.  Dry heat my ass!  If felt like when you open up the oven door when you are cooking a pizza at 450°.

Thus, we once again arrived at the outdoor venue (which was a paved parking lot this year instead of the rough gravel that it had been in previous years) around 5pm.  We only had to suffer through a few hours of the heat before the sun started to set and it cooled down slightly.  Purposefully, we missed Rats in the Wall, Clepto, Bad Cop/Bad Cop, and Cerebral Ballzy.

We made it in time to see Good Riddance who I have never seen play live nor have I spent much time listening to their recorded catalog.  Russ Rankin, their singer, also sings in Only Crime a band I am more familiar with due to their drummer being Bill Stevenson of Descendents/ALL.  I enjoyed the set, and I am glad we got their in time to see it.

OFF! were next.  They had too much time on the schedule so Keith Morris, their singer, spent a fair amount of time chatting between songs.  They were great as expected.  We ran into Keith checking out of the Golden Nugget the following morning.  He mentioned it was their last show of their USA tour and their next tour would be in Japan.  Here is the setlist based on a pic I took that was taped to the side of the speakers on stage.

It was now time to get some food so it was off for another buffalo burger while we skipped the noise that was Leftover Crack.  I also stayed behind at the tent for most of the Against Me! set too as I was not too fond of their studio recordings.  I did meander toward the stage to catch the last 5-6 songs of the set and was pleasantly surprised.  I do recall hearing “Drinking with the Jocks.”

NOFX would close out the festival.  As always, Fat Mike and El Hefe trade barbs and jokes with each other and the crowd throughout their set.  They were very entertaining.  They did have a few impromptu tunes that appeared they made up on stage to add to their list of too many reggae influenced songs on the setlist.  Maybe one day they will play “Liza & Louise” when I am at one of their shows.  I do recall them playing the following songs in no particular order.

Seeing Double at the Triple Rock
Stickin in My Eye
Ronnie and Mags
72 Hookers
We March to the Beat of an Indifferent Drum
Who Will O’d 1st at PRB?
Bottles to the Ground
It’s My Job to Keep Punk Rock Elite
Don’t Call Me White
Murder the Government
Kill All the White Man
War on Errorism
The Shortest Pier

So there you have it, the end of the weekend.  We had tickets to go see The Last, but decided to skip it to get some sleep.  Our expectation was that they would play until around 2am like the other club shows.  Much to our dismay when we found out Tuesday morning that The Last had a 6-7 song setlist that went for about 25-30 minutes and ended before midnight.  In hindsight, maybe we would have toughed it out and watched them before heading back to the Golden Nugget.

Many thanks to Earthdog for traveling out from the Boston area for the weekend, for splitting the cost of the hotel room, and for going on line to buy most of the club show tix that sold out almost immediately.  Thanks again to Ben for being a gracious host while we were in his hometown of Las Vegas.

Here is Earthdog's wrap up.

DAY 4: GUITARS FOR BREAKFAST? Last day of the show and as we sat down to eat at the restaurant inside the Golden Nugget, we noticed that The Adicts guitarists were right behind us. Their roadie brought one of their guitars down, as they were playing a pool party. We actually bagged this since we didn’t want to get shut out like the Peter and the Test Tube Babies event. But it was funny seeing them whip out a guitar as they were downing their OJ! Side of grapefruit with that boys? Anyway, first band we saw on the last day of the festival was Good Riddance. Had never seen this band either. I thought they put on a rocking set. I just think the crowd was still struggling with the heat for the most part. Next was OFF! They were on fire and played stuff from all 3 of their records. Lewdd would chat with Keith Morris the next morning in the hotel check-out line. But today it was all about the rawk! I checked out Against Me!’s set. Drummer Atom Willard was impressive. Laura Jane Grace’s bra was cute. That is all. NOFX closed out the night. Although the guys should have played half the amount of reggae tunes they did, it was still totally entertaining. The music and the wisecracks in between songs both made me happy. Fat Mike said he had been awake for 4 days-he may have looked it, but the band still came up with the goods. Stick it in my eye! Well, that pretty much wraps it up my friends. I won’t bore you with additional mundane facts like we didn’t catch The Last, even though we had tickets. Or that my return flight was delayed and it took me fucking forever to get home. No, I will just leave you with this-Punk Rock Bowling rules and we can all thank the Stern brothers from BYO for that. So don’t be a wallflower-make sure you go in 2015. End transmission.

Friday, May 30, 2014

2014-05-25 Punk Rock Bowling

Day 3 - Sunday, May 25, 2014

Let’s start out with my big regret of the day.  I really wish we would have woke up early and gone to see the film Filmage which was the history of the Descendents (and I think a ALL but not sure here).  That was probably something I will regret if this never makes it out on DVD.

Again, it was over 100° outside early so we got there around 5:00pm and skipped The Objex, Lost in Society, and La Plebe.

However, we made it in time to see Masked Intruder who I will say right here will be the next NOFX if they can keep their shit together.  For those who do not know, this band likes to keep their identity unknown so much so that they each where a winter ski cap mask that covers their face.  Each band member wearing a different color mask which often times copies the color of their instrument.  I thought they were from Wisconsin, but the lead singer has a fucking accent from New York stronger than the Jerky Boys.  I still can’t believe they played their hit song (in my mind) “Stick ‘Em Up” as their first song instead of making the crowd wait for them to play it last.  They also played quite a bit of tunes from their newest CD that just dropped to shelves this week.  The funniest fucking thing was this guy dressed as a cop that initially stood on stage stoically.  As their set went on, he ended up beating people up (staged), stage diving and crowd surfing, and stripping down to his undies.  Holy shit!  Well, I have written enough about a band at the lower end of the bill for the day, but these guys will be big.  Trust me!  Here are some tunes I remember from their set.

Stick em Up
How Do I Get to You
25 to Life
Unrequited Love
Wish You Were Mine
ADT Security
I Fought the Law
The Most Beautiful Girl
Crime Spree
Hey Girl

SNFU were up next….. God Damn!  This is the same band that I heard on the Stern Brothers (yes, those guys putting this festival together for the last 15 or so years) BYO label compilation when I was in high school.  I was so excited to finally get to see them play.  Over the years, I have heard all of the stories about the lead singer, Chi Pig.  I didn’t realize how true they were.  This was far and away the most disappointing set of the entire weekend.  So much so, that I only recognized 3 songs that they played.  They were some of my favorites but just didn’t come remotely close to what I have heard thru the needle on the records.  The set started with “Womanizer”, midway thru “She’s Not on the Menu” shortly followed by “Cannibal Cafe”.  As much as I tried to pretend this was awesome, I was dismayed by the fact that they didn’t play more tunes from ….And Know One Else Wanted to Play.   Additionally, it was a bit of a sham.  End of story...they are washed up.  It really hit me when I saw all ~80lbs of Chi Pig walking thru the crowd after the show with a Snoopy pilot helmet. Some may have said that he looked like the main character in the TV show "Kung Fu" albeit maybe 100lbs lighter.

I had heard enough of The Dwarves singer say “Yeah!” at the 2000 Tons of TNT fest a few years ago so I thought it was a good time to get my feet some rest, buy a beer and a buffalo burger.  Yeah!!!!

Up next were The Adicts.  This must be the 5th time or so that I have seen these guys (well, with a gal now who is pleasant to the eye).  Outside of Cock Sparrer, this band does the best job of forcing the crowd to get involved in the show.  Love ‘em.  Great show again!  Over the last few years, I have started to watch the English Premier League soccer games.  I have migrated to Man U as my team (with the Cockney Rejects West Ham U as an underdog fave).  Well, the Adicts are Liverpool supporters (they had a good team this year).  They played “We Will Never Walk Alone” which is the Liverpool anthem.  I do find myself singing along during the show and when watching the Liverpool games on TV when those in attendance are chanting.  These guys (and now gal too) never disappoint.  Monkey has hit kit of streamers that he shoots into the crowd, rolls around the mic stand, etc.  Let’s not forget the Adicts beach balls at the end of the set.  Hell, these fuckers hot down the PRB UFO!!  Here is what I remember them playing.

Face to Face were up next.  My fat ass needed a break so I headed back to the tents.  After all, it was over 100° today.  This is a band that is an enigma for me.  Their catalog on Fat Wreck Chords could be ranked up there with some of the best early 90s punk rock.  After that, I kinda lost interest in them.  After some rest, I headed toward the stage for a listen.  The crowd loved them.  I was caught in the middle of this sounds great (for those songs I remembered) and this is mediocre (for those songs that were post Fat).  I really think they were too far up in the lineup than they should have been, but considering those bands that played today there may not have been any better before the headliner.

Well, everything does not suck even though the Descendents decided to open with “Everything Sux”.  Hell, it was the Descendents.  How the fuck could anything suck?!?  See, way back in the 80s I had this buddy named Larry that was way ahead of the punk rock curve.  He was two years older than me.  He and I played little league football together. It also just so happened that his older sister and my older brother dated in high school.  His other older sister was also good friends with my old sister.  Low and behold later his younger sister had a crush on my younger brother.  Enuff of that.  Larry introduced me to the Descendents, Peter and the Test Tube Babies, and a band most people probably never heard of or mistake for a newer band, The Drones.  Larry ended up fronting a band named Youthquake who had a few tracks on some Mystic Records compilations.  We had another buddy named Pat who ended up playing 2nd base for the Yankees for several years.  Small town.  Legends in my eyes in different angles.  I miss both those guys!

Enuff of my sob story.  The fucking Descendents were on stage.  Most of the male population that graduated from Catasauqua High School during the 80s-90s ranked this band as their all time favorite.  Me included and at the head of the pulpit preaching their ALLness!  As much as I enjoyed seeing some bands for the very first time and thought it was a religious experience, every time I see the Descendents play live they are the Bible!!!  From the first note to the last there is never a band better than these guys.  Yes, I could bitch about they should have played this or they should have played that.  Others bitch about they play too many songs after their first 3 releases.  Who gives a fuck?!?  It is the goddamn Descendents!  No one is better. Well folks, this is what blasted out of the speakers as the best fucking sound of the weekend!

Everything Sux
Rotting Out
I Want To Be A Bear
Clean Sheets
My Dad Sucks
Suburban Home (w/ Zach Blair)
Silly Girl
I'm The One
Coffee Mug
Nothing With You
I Like Food
When I Get Old
Get The Time
I Don't Want To Grow Up
Der Weinerschnitzel
Thank You
I'm Not a Loser

Well, now the festival was over and it was time for the club shows.  Fuck my feet!  I couldn’t do it.  And, I couldn’t let anything be better than the Descendents for the night and for the weekend.  I sold my tix to my buddy Ben and he and Earthdog hit the club shows

I missed the Meatmen.  I saw them at 2000 Tons of TNT a few years ago so it was not a complete disaster.  I would have liked to have listened to them play “Dinosaur” live again - a hit track from their new release that came out this month.

I do regret missing Cock Sparrer play a club show.  In fact, my buddy Ben rated this the best event of the entire weekend.  While I may argue that the Descendents played and are ALLways better, he has a good case.  Cock Sparrer rocked at the Metro a few years ago at Riot Fest!

Here is Earthdog's story.


 This afternoon was spent chillaxing in our room. Occasionally I would check out the view

of the “shark tank” at the pool while watching re-runs of In the Heat of the Night. Soon we

would be in real heat, as it was a hot one today! I grabbed some pizza that was cooked inside an

actual fire truck. Unfortunately I think they forgot to take out all the motor oil. Oh well-it was

back to “The Rebel” later that day. First band we caught was Masked Intruder. They put on a

tight show; the fat cop was funny too. Next came SNFU. I don’t know much about these dudes,

but the singer looked like he just walked off the stage after a 70’s TV show shoot. The Adicts

were awesome. Great songs, cool stage props, and a new female violinist who had some great

“chops.” Face to Face was next. Highlight of PRB-NO CONTEST. The crowd was amped, I

knew the words to most of the songs, and the cold ones were flowing. What more could you ask

for? Descendents wrapped it up and they also were fantastic. Enjoy!

 Club shows would be a double dipper tonight. First-The Meatmen at Country Saloon. Epic!

Tesco and the boys rocked the house and they have a new album out too so what are you waiting

for? We skipped out after their set to catch the “secret” show, which ended up being Cock

Sparrer in a club setting. Very cool to see, even if the set was close to what they had played at

the festival. Still worthwhile-but another late night. Ben and I closed down the Backstage Bar;

Lewdd had to go get his beauty sleep.