The Harrison Four - This area trio plays fairly typical modern punk. They of course have the requisite energy and occasionally establish a decent hook, but it is all the sort of thing you've heard before. I was first thinking mid-80s, but it's probably even more modern sounding than that. There was the ska song. I was glad to see the guitarist wince at the beginning of his first solo run, as I was also wincing. He got it together, but the power chords were the place this was going to work. Some of the bass runs were good. There was a good crowd of over 50 who enjoyed this well enough as most of them were far too young to hear the bands I have heard in this genre. The three guys seemed quite nice and on the basis of their sometimes awkward banter (and occasional insight) and they appear to be fairly bright. I fear I would need to hear something beyond all of this if I were to return.
The Wild - The Pogues are the mightiest of oaks with acorns that have spread into a forest worth of trees that span the globe. This Atlanta quintet is one of the stronger trees that has picked up on the style and attitude, yet they are firmly rooted in the south. Just as the Street Dogs take this to their Boston extremes with their brand of gutsy punk music, the Wild does the same here in this 32-minute set. They sound like a hootenanny gone mad with plenty of rustic rootsy flourishes played with punk speed and power. The lead guitarist is deft enough to do many cool things within the upscale tempos, which really impressed me (and most everyone else in the now 60+ crowd). They even have both singers blast some harmonica which blends in well and does not head into overkill as there is so much volume elsewhere--even a bit too much as stage volume nearly gets out of hand early, but feedback was ultimately controlled. This was excellent material delivered with great energy and skill. I always make time for a band like this.
The Taxpayers - From Portland, Oregon comes this intriguing combination of guitars, bass, drums, trumpet, and accordion. They also play punk music with a touch of rootsy sounds, but it is more in a crazed power pop manner with all kinds of interesting sounds grabbing sonic space. Their banner said it all with a simple statement of "Goof Punx". Hmm... this is perhaps the first time I have seen a band define its genre in its backdrop. No matter, as the crazy fun continued and they were able to match the energy levels established previously. They really got the crowd going as well, and instructed all of us on how to do a bobsledding race dance or something like that. "You in the back, you'll lose the race." Yeah, ok, that is my cross to bear I suppose. Then they had a do-se-do song. Sorry, I gave that up after 8th Grad gym class where the two non-integrated (sexually as it was pre Title IX) gym classes combined for square dance lessons which was clearly an attempt to indoctrinate adolescents into the concept of dating the opposite sex. Oh the chills of those days. But the real point here is that this band was very good at their approach and very successful with the young crowd. And I am quite happy to a great crowd enjoying this unique performance.
Quote of the Night: From the Taxpayers talking about visiting the Smithsonian... "Does anyone know who George Reeves is?"
Apparently me and one other guy did (wonder if he knew he was in Gone with the Wind).
"That's right he was the original Superman whose outfit was in the Smithsonian"
Well, actually Kirk Alyn preceded him in a serial version a few years earlier. My Mom met him and I have an autograph picture around here somewhere. Also George Reeves committed suicide, or did he?