Gateway Drugs - Wow, three of the four members here are children of a member of the Knack! 'My Sharona' was drilled into our heads for about a six month period, where it seemed easier to escape life itself than that dramatic power pop hit. The kids stretch out the pop hooks here and create a stronger post punk psyche rock vibe that works quite well tonight with this large crowd. I particularly like the trade-off lead vocals between male and female voices. When they harmonize, they remind me a bit of the Raveonettes singing with a tad of Bunnymen in the music. This is quite good and a pleasure to listen to. But then they cap it off with even more fun, as they reach back before their birth to their California forebears, the Count Five, an do a great cover of 'Psychotic Reaction'. They left to a great ovation and can likely pull a lot of this crowd back again.
Swervedriver - It looks like these guys are back to stick around a while after their reunion tour. I had not kept up recently, but they are touring a new album with the band that has been around a few years featuring Adam Franklin, guitarist Jimmy Hartridge, long time bassist Steve George, and prolific American drummer Mikey Jones (who worked with Franklin's solo band). It is a tight powerful unit that delivers the volume and intricate moves you expect and they had it working well tonight. It did not seem quite as intense, perhaps due to the newer material or maybe even more so, the fact that I was in the back of the club as opposed to right up front last time they were here. They still have a great take on the hard rocking shoe gaze style with Adam Franklin's fine work, although tonight I found some of his vocals less interesting than on his solo albums or earlier Swervedriver material. But I will always try to be on hand for a Swervedriver show, as their brand of power is a great boost to life, that not every band can achieve merely by turning up their amplifiers.
Plug of the Night: I am highly looking forward to this, as the Damned are an interesting subject for a film, a brilliant band with a flawed career who I can listen to and talk about the whole night long. And Lemmy gets it right, the Damned were a true punk band.